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Groupings, Days of the Week, and Group Descriptions

For Ages 0 – 3 and their grown-ups: Shalom Chaverim (“Welcome, Friends!”)

Shalom Chaverim children come on Sunday mornings and attend with a grown-up. 

Description: Stories, singing, arts, playing, and more. Our youngest children explore Judaism through the textures, sounds, sights, smells, and rhythms of the Jewish year. Shalom Chaverim meets on Sundays only. Families may join in communal singing and prayer at 11:30 AM.

For Nursery 3 – Kindergarten Children: Shorashim (“Roots”) and Shteelim (“Saplings”)

Nursery children may enroll for any number of days, Sunday through Thursday. Kindergarten children must enroll for at least two days, Sunday through Thursday.

Description: Shorashim and Shteelim children explore Judaism, Jewish texts, and Hebrew language through play, creative arts, music, construction, science, stories, games, and more. Children become familiar with different modes of expressing their ideas, develop facility with various artistic materials and techniques, and practice social awareness and relationship skills for collaborative, long-term projects. While children decide how they want to play with Hebrew, using magnets, games, blocks, stamps, or other materials, Shteelim also offers a more structured introduction to Hebrew language and writing for children who are ready. Shorashim and Shteelim children use the toilet with minimal assistance and attend class without their grown-ups.

For First and Second Grade Children: Nitzanim (“Buds”)

Nitzanim children have two options for enrollment:

Schedule A: Sunday mornings, 9:00 – 11:45 AM and Wednesday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM.

Schedule B: Monday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM, and Thursday afternoons, after school – 6:15 PM.

Add Tuesday to either/both schedules from after school until 5:45 PM

Description: Nitzanim children develop Jewish literacy through long-term, project-based exploration of Jewish ideas and Hebrew language. Nitzanim express themselves through art, drama, spoken word, and writing, and build listening, thinking, and questioning skills while learning to value multiple perspectives. Nitzanim also offers a more structured introduction to Hebrew language and writing for children who are ready.

For Third and Fourth Grade Children: Anafim (“Branches”) 

Anafim children have two options for enrollment:

Schedule A: Sunday mornings, 9:00 – 11:45 AM and Wednesday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM.

Schedule B: Monday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM, and Thursday afternoons, after school – 6:15 PM.

Add Tuesday to either/both schedules from after school until 5:45 PM 

Description: Anafim children continue to acquire foundational Jewish literacy through long-term, project-based learning, with greater independence and choice in projects and materials. Anafim children explore personal connections with Judaism and Jewish community while focusing on skills for text interpretation and community dialogue. Hebrew language learning in Anafim supports deeper engagement with text and each other.  

For Fifth Grade Children: Alonim (“Oak Trees”)

Alonim children have two options for enrollment:

Schedule A: Sunday mornings, 9:00 – 11:45 AM and Wednesday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM.

Schedule B: Monday afternoons, after school – 5:45 PM, and Thursday afternoons, after school – 6:15 PM.

Add Tuesday to either/both schedules from after school until 5:45 PM

Description: Alonim children continue to develop foundational Jewish literacy while grappling with a broader range of texts and historical information. Children experience more choice in their projects. Alonim children are familiar with chavrutah (partner text study), and use the process comfortably to explore their own relationship with Judaism. Alonim children decode Hebrew with ease, and children work on reading fluency and on grammatical principles for translation. A major focus of the Alonim Hebrew curriculum is Jewish prayer and the structure of Jewish prayer services.

Middle and High School Kids: Arazim (“Cedars”)

Middle and high school kids come once/week to the Enrichment Center in two groups, and meet throughout the year for special programming. Arazim (“Cedars”) kids may also serve as a madrich (leader) in a nursery – grade room any day of the week, TBD by quarter.

Sixth grade children may instead choose to stay in the flagship Sunday and afterschool program, or enroll additionally in the middle school program.

Description: In the Arazim (“Cedars”) program, we turn from the younger children’s theme exploration towards preteen and early teens’ questions of self-identity and community. For example, they ask: what if I don’t like what my friend is doing? can Jews get tattoos? be cremated? what’s the deal with kosher food? how do I navigate differences between explicit rules and implicit rules? Arazim (“Cedars”) kids explore these questions through Jewish text study, book and internet research, yetzirah (art/creativity), interviews, field trips, and more. Our long-term projects with Jewish texts at their core support preteen and early teens’ development of foundational Jewish literacy, while ensuring that they get to define their own relationship with Judaism. Like the younger children, Arazim (“Cedars”) kids share their work publicly, coinciding with Family Exploration and Celebration.

Optional Arazim (“Cedars”) Madrichim (“Leadership”) Program

The Arazim (“Cedars”) program includes an optional Madrichim (“Leadership”) track. The Madrichim program teaches preteens and early teens skills for leadership, for working with younger children, and responsible decision-making. Madrichim serve as assistants in younger children’s kevutzot (groups). A madrich or madricha might play Hebrew games with a younger child, interview a younger child about their artwork, set up a painting project, and much more. Madrichim also work as a team to plan and lead Enrichment Center holiday celebrations for children and families. Madrichim meet twice/quarter with the Rosh Madrichim (Head of Madrichim) to learn strategies and leadership principles for working with younger children. Madrichim sign up for a specific day by quarter.

What is chavrutah (partner text study)? (For Children in First Grade and Older) 

Chavrutah literally means “partner,” and describes the relationship between two individuals who study and explore Jewish text together, with the text serving as third partner in this relationship. The role of a chavrutah (study partner) is to challenge their partner to consider new perspectives and deepen understanding of the text and each other. At the Jewish Enrichment Center, children use the chavrutah format to wrestle with Jewish text and explore their own connections to Judaism and each other, while simultaneously practicing skills for dialogue and synthesis of ideas. Through chavrutah, children begin to take ownership of Jewish texts, and know their own voice to play an important role in Judaism and Jewish community.

View the full 2020-2021 Enrollment Packet

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