“Chai School” meets the challenge of providing a meaningful Jewish education for adolescent age students (Grades 7 – 12) by allowing them to design their own program of study! Chai School meets on Tuesday nights during the school year from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM
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7th and 8th Grade
Grade 7: Hineini – Here I Am as an Emerging Jewish Adult – Using the curriculum created by Facing History and Ourselves, our seventh graders link history to ethics by engaging teachers and students in a journey from identity, through the study of particular historical case study, provoking questions that are both particular and universal. Students study traditional Jewish sources focusing on the Prophets and their responses to antisemitism and difficult historical times. Students also study B’reisheet and commentaries, focusing on a few stories of individuals who grow and learn.
Grade 8: Making Judaism Work for Me! – The 8th graders study comparative religion. Students discuss and learn about each of the world’s major religions and debate how Judaism is both similar and different from them. Comparative religion is a great way to learn about Judaism. Topics include; “what is a religion”, things to remember about Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. Students will also discuss how to respond to Christian Missionaries. Jewish Text based activities that further open students’ insight into each religion and invite active discussions will complement each session.
Coming to America – Our ninth graders, using contemporary materials and specifically designed curriculum, explore the political, social, economic, and religious history of the American Jewish community during the Eastern European migration to America. Students travel as a group to New York City and experience their curriculum “first hand” during our Jewish New York Tour. 9th graders also explore ethical and moral issues and learn how to apply Jewish principles and concepts to their everyday lives. Text study and group debate and discussion make up the core of our 9th grade program.
Tenth grade is our Confirmation year, a special time to develop a relationship with our rabbis, our Youth Educator and our Congregation. Weekly classes taught by Rabbi Gurevitz, Rabbi Eiduson and Debbi Morin are designed to bring the entirety of the students’ Jewish Education into better focus. A highlight of this year includes a four-day trip to the L’Taken Social Justice Seminar in Washington D.C. (2/9-2/12/18) sponsored by the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism. The Confirmation Service will take place at 7:00 pm, Saturday, May 19, 2018.
Judaism is a great adventure, but it’s our adventure! Everything you wanted to know about Judaism, but were afraid to ask is the theme of the Post Confirmation Year. Classroom sessions will be a forum for a wide range of topics based on student-submitted questions. Each session will take us in a different direction and students bring questions, no holds barred, and we go at it. Students travel together to Philadelphia every other year and engage in a seminar in American Jewish History! Rabbis Gurevitz and Eiduson share the teaching of our Post Confirmation program!
These teens are transformed into role models, into leaders, whose young students look up to them. Confidence, pride, meaning, and a renewed passion for learning – that’s what this program creates for our teens. Madrichim prepare lessons, lead small group discussions and tutor children in Hebrew, introduce exciting games to review classroom material, provide a safe and loving environment for every student, make it “cool” to be Jewish, and bring a sense of ruach (spirit) to the classroom, youth events, and retreats.
S.T.O.P. (Students Together Opposing Prejudice is a youth education and leadership initiative teaching teens how to confront stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination. S.T.O.P. addresses all forms of discrimination and prejudice, including prejudice based on race, gender, sexual orientation, physical appearance, class, disability, background and religion. Traditionally, sessions are held in houses of worship to give the participants an opportunity to learn about different beliefs, besides their own, but non-religious organizations are also involved.