Who: Learners in K-6
What: A program built to inspire your child’s love of learning and connection to all things Jewish!
Where: 21st St. between 9th and 10th Aves.
When: Wednesdays from 3:30-5:00 pm
$375 for Temple Emanu-El Members
$765 for non-members
8:00 - 8:30pm
Religious School Lab Info Session
FOR PARENTS OF STUDENTS IN GRADES K-5
Interested in joining the Religious School Lab mid-year? Join Mike Witman, Director of Lifelong Learning, and Yael Greene, Program Coordinator for the Religious School Lab. Learn more about this amazing Wednesday after-school experience which includes wonderful teachers, a warm community, and pick-ups from local schools.
At Temple Emanu-El’s Religious School, we are dedicated to creating a culture of אַהֲבָה-— ahava (love) and הַכָּרַת הַטּוֹב — hakarat ha’tov (gratitude) among students, teachers, parents, and community members. Fostering a sense of love and gratitude within our community not only enhances our children’s educational experience, but also strengthens relational bonds, building trust and friendship. Through these Jewish values, we create an environment that promotes kindness, empathy and an appreciation for the many blessings in our lives.
Our vision is to cultivate a vibrant and inclusive culture of lifelong learning deeply rooted in the Jewish values of learning Torah, exploring spirituality, and practicing lovingkindness. We celebrate diversity, nurture creativity and encourage curiosity, embracing every student’s unique perspectives and experiences. We delight in the joy of Judaism and foster a community suffused with love and gratitude, cultivating each family's passion for Jewish life.
Curriculum: Our interactive and inclusive curriculum is designed to help children develop a strong and positive Jewish identity. We believe in the importance of shared values that unite us all, such as "Using inner strength to make ethical choices" and "Taking accountability for our actions."
In our curriculum for grades K-2, we have carefully crafted 28 comprehensive and engaging lesson plans for each grade. These lesson plans are centered around values and are aimed at fostering a deep understanding of Jewish values and holidays. To enhance the learning experience, we incorporate STEAM activities that allow students to explore these values in a hands-on and interactive way.
For kindergarten and first grade students, we have designed lessons that engage all five senses. This multisensory approach ensures that students fully immerse themselves in each lesson, making the learning experience more meaningful and memorable. As students progress to grades 2-3, our curriculum focuses on seven core values or units, with each unit consisting of four lessons. These 28 lessons delve into Jewish text, history, tefillah, and holidays and incorporate Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) skills. By integrating SEL, we empower students to develop positive relationships, make responsible decisions, and build strong character. To provide a more comprehensive understanding of Jewish values and their relevance in daily life, our curriculum embraces a pluralistic approach. This approach encourages students to appreciate diverse perspectives and promotes inclusivity within the Jewish community. By implementing our curriculum, students develop a deep understanding of Jewish values, gain knowledge of Jewish traditions, and cultivate a strong Jewish identity. Our lessons are designed to be engaging, interactive, and relevant, ensuring that students not only learn about Jewish values but also apply them in their everyday lives.
Tefilah (Prayer): Tefilah is an integral part of the Religious School curriculum. Students begin to learn the prayers through music. Among our goals is for students to know Reform liturgy, feel comfortable praying in a variety of Jewish settings, and understand the meaning of traditional prayers. This is also an opportunity for them to connect with each other and with their own sense of spirituality through communal singing and worship.
Hebrew: In grades K-3, our younger students engage in Hebrew Through Movement, a program focusedon experiential learning. With the guidance of a trained facilitator, students learn Hebrew by listening to and following commands. For instance, when they hear "la-rutz el ha-delet," they eagerly run towards the door. By introducing this interactive method of language acquisition at an early stage, students become well-acquainted with Hebrew letters, grammar, and structure, which greatly aids their prayer studies later on.
Havdalah (Distinction): Havdalah is the brief and beautiful ceremony that helps us move from Shabbat into the beginning of the week. We will be using this ceremony at the beginning of each Religious School session to help students transition from the workday world into a sacred time and space of Jewish religion, history and culture. We welcome parents to participate in Havdalah with us, not only to take part in this centering, community ceremony, but also to grow comfortable with this ritual which families can incorporate into their home Jewish practice.
Emanu-El Makers: Tinker, create, and play while learning all about Jewish holidays and culture. Emanu-El Maker’s is an opportunity for Religious School Lab students to collaborate on projects and a space for kids not enrolled in the Religious School to get a feel for the community. All are welcome!