Curriculum Overview

At BJEP we teach the ABC’s of a Jewish education:

We strive to instill Agency over each child’s Jewish identity, Belonging within Jewish community and Competency with Jewish traditions and Hebrew language.

We have 5 areas of focus: Torah, Hebrew & Prayer, Jewish Holidays, Tikkun Olam (repairing the world/social action) & Jewish Values, Israel & Jewish History. We consider community to be the implicit curriculum underlying and supporting all classroom learning.

Each grade teaches both Judaics and Hebrew through an age-appropriate thematic focus with clear learning objectives and guiding questions.

Torah

Studying Torah is an essential part of Jewish education. Torah study not only includes the five books of Moses, but also Prophets, Writings, the Oral Torah, Midrash and much more.  We bring Torah to life, making the stories relevant to the lives of our students. 

  • K/1: Torah as the concept of a holy book
  • 2nd Grade: Torah Heroes
  • 3rd: Grade: An Introduction to Genesis and Exodus
  • 4th Grade: The Prophets and Modern Themes
  • 5th Grade: God and Prayer in Torah
  • 6th Grade: The Torah Service
  • 7th Grade: Mitzvot in the Torah

Hebrew & Prayer

Our curriculum engages with Hebrew language using all of the senses. We understand that language acquisition happens through reception, expression, reading and production.  We believe it is important for students to not only be able to read the prayers, but also to understand their meaning.   We begin in our early learners with letter recognition, and expand with our older grades to modern vocabulary and Hebrew prayers.   We embed music and prayers throughout the BJEP program, coming together for our Teffilah service.  We leverage Hebrew Through Movement, an interactive aural method for teaching Hebrew vocabulary and language.

Below are the prayers and vocabulary that each grade will focus on:

  • K/1: Sensory introduction to letters, Shema and Shehechianu
  • 2nd Grade: Hebrew reading foundation, blessing formulas and Shabbat blessings
  • 3rd: Grade: Colors, Barchu, Shema review, Mi Chamocha and Four Questions
  • 4th Grade: Numbers, V’ahavta, Havdalah and V’shamru
  • 5th Grade: Body Parts, Amidah, L’cha Dodi, and Oseh Shalom
  • 6th Grade: Synagogue vocab, Mourner’s Kaddish, Torah Service, and Morning Blessings
  • 7th Grade: Shabbat blessings, Amidah, Torah Blessings.
  • Those who prepare for B’nai Mitzvah continue independently outside of BJEP Sunday mornings.

Jewish Holidays

Every grade experiences the magic and wisdom of the Jewish holidays.

  • K/1: Stories & Symbols of the Jewish Calendar
  • 2nd Grade: Shabbat and Holiday Heroes
  • 3rd: Grade: Jewish values of the Holidays with a focus on Passover
  • 4th Grade: Holidays through the Prophets
  • 5th Grade: Holidays around the World
  • 6th Grade: Jewish Lifecycle Events
  • 7th Grade: Mitzvot (commandments) inspired by each Holiday

Tikkun Olam and Jewish Values

Jewish values permeate classroom conversations throughout the year in both content and structure. Every class collects tzedakah, money dedicated to economic justice issues; this is a practice in generosity and raises social awareness. Additionally, every year we have a school-wide program on Martin Luther King Jr. weekend with a focus on Tikkun Olam/Social Justice issues. The 3rd, 4th and 7th grades have a special emphasis on Jewish Values and Tikkun Olam. 

Israel and Jewish History

At BJEP students in all grades gain a better understanding of Israel as a people, a place and a modern state. By learning about Israel, students learn about themselves and their own personal Jewish history. By helping students connect to their past in this way, we also help them to forge a stronger connection to their Jewish identity.

  • K/1: Modern Israeli Holidays
  • 2nd Grade: Shabbat in Israel
  • 3rd: Grade: Sacred Community – Klal Yisrael
  • 4th Grade: A mythic place: Ancient Israel in Torah and Prophets
  • 5th Grade: Israeli geography: Cities and Culture 
  • 6th Grade: American Jewish History
  • 7th Grade: Holocaust Studies