During our second week of staff orientation and preparation, we’ve spent a lot of time intentionally designing our JEC rooms to best facilitate exploration, growth and comfort for our children this year. With the help of parents, we are in the process of completely rearranging the environments.
One of our new environments will be a re-imagined sifriyah (library). Yesterday, we discussed the experiences and relationships that a sifriyah might foster in our children, and came up with what we thought was important to make possible: a sense that Jewish texts are accessible, a sense of belonging, and a sense of challenge and personal stakes in reading. We also valued the beit midrash (study/discussion hall) aspect of the room, and wanted to create space for children to feel comfortable having discussions. Today, our educator team experimented with furniture to create a maze-like, magical sefriyah with many corners to curl up in and read, and table space for text study.
What has been amazing about this process for me is the extent of conceptual foundation and intentionality behind how the space is designed for our kids. Before they enter the room, we are already thinking deeply about how the space and materials reflect what’s important to us.
Keep checking in to see our progress each day in setting up this year’s learning environments!