Grades 3 through 7 meet each Sunday for a short service. The older students are encouraged to lead the services and everyone enjoys the singing. There are brief prayer explanations and the students are given the opportunity to express their opinions
The main vehicle for learning to read Hebrew is our Hebrew tutoring program staffed by teen tutors. Students work in pairs or individually with a tutor to practice correct Hebrew reading and learn about the prayers. We use the Mitkadem program both in the classroom and at home with online access available to families who choose to enroll.
3rd grade: The theme for the year in the CHAI curriculum is k’duashah, holiness. The students learn that understanding the laws in the Torah and doing acts of kindness make the world and their lives better and more holy. Hebrew studies involve intensive decoding practice for the first part of the year and beginning the Mitkadem program as they are ready.
4th grade: Students learn about themselves and the community, their connection to the Jewish people and the land of Israel. Hebrew studies now include learning prayers from the siddur (prayer book) and holiday vocabulary.
5th grade:Children continue to expand their Hebrew reading and writing skills, with emphasis on Shabbat and other holiday services. This year, the CHAI curriculum focuses on liberal, progressive Judaism and the community. The books of the Prophets are used to understand how God wants us to live.
6th Grade: At this point, the children become increasingly aware that the day on which they will become b'nai mitzvah is fast approaching. A large part of their curriculum focuses on helping prepare them for the responsibilities of becoming Jewish adults. By grade six, the average student should be very comfortable reading Hebrew. Cantor Kohlbrenner teaches the class for a half hour on Wednesday. Revelation is the main topic of the CHAI curriculum dealing with our relationships to God through text, and g'milut chasadim.
7th grade: Students become increasingly involved in bar/bat mitzvah preparation. Hebrew studies reinforce the skills they already know. The question posed in the CHAI curriculum is, "What does it mean to be a responsible Jewish adult?