Each Temple Emek Shalom Shul School session begins as an entire school community (parents, siblings, and students) with prayer and conversation. The students then separate into learning sessions, by age group, with a break for snack and time together as a larger group. Shul School ends with a brief communal gathering of sharing and song.
Judaism offers a path to bring about more justice, healing, compassion and peace into the world. Temple Emek Shalom embodies these Jewish values and so many more in our approach to building community and in the design of our educational programs. Each of our weekly sessions are therefore grounded in one or more Jewish values, and each age group engages with these values in their own age-appropriate way.
We prepare for the major Jewish holidays in the classroom by reviewing the stories, blessings, vocabulary, songs, foods, and prayers associated with each holiday and exploring their ethical and spiritual messages.
Children engage with the core narratives of the Jewish people through multiple approaches, including art, theater, literature, and discussion.
Reading and Writing Basic Hebrew
Hebrew is interwoven into our every day with prayers, songs, games, stories, and expressions. Students learn how to read and write basic Hebrew and also enjoy “Hebrew through Movement” where they learn modern day Hebrew expressions. Our 4th-6th graders also participate in one-on-one weekly Hebrew video-tutoring. Our B’nai mitzvah students then work with a tutor weekly in their B’nai mitzvah year to become proficient in their Torah/Haftarah readings and learn the tropes to leyn/chant them.
Students learn to read, sing, and understand the basic Jewish blessings and prayers. They are encouraged to reflect on the meaning of prayer and their evolving spirituality.