Welcome to Westchester Reform Temple Religious School
Before making your class choice selection, please take a moment to read our 2017-2018 School Year Overview below for Kindergarten through 12th Grade.
Temple/Synagogue Membership is required for all WRT Religious School programs. WRT Family accounts must be in Good Standing (all account items paid in full). New Religious School families, if registering your children before the new membership year begins, must provide $1,845 deposit towards Membership Dues (dated July 1, 2017), and Membership Forms (Building Fund, Commitment and Info Card), before being allowed to register for Religious School.
Kindergarten through 6th grade: Our students are engaged in a variety of learning experiences. Students explore our liturgy and holidays, and as they progress through the program they learn to read Hebrew, and explore Judaic studies topics such as the Jewish life-cycle, Israel: Land, History and Society, What Does it Mean to become a Bar or Bat Mitzvah?, and Facing History: An Introduction to the Holocaust. We have various models to meet the needs of our students and their families.
ALEF (“A”) and BET (“B”): In addition to regular classes, Kindergarten through 6th grade students and their parents join together on Sundays at 10:30-11:00am for a musical service led by our clergy. Students enjoy learning both traditional melodies and the latest in Jewish popular music with a music specialist, and share in a variety of special events and projects.
SHARING SHABBAT: Our Sharing Shabbat program is designed for parent participation. Students and parents attend a Saturday morning family service beginning at 9:00am that is followed by an oneg: bagels, coffee, cookies and conversation for children, parents and teachers. Students then go to their classrooms and parents are invited to engage in discussion about Jewish life and literature with our clergy. During this time, childcare is offered for three- and four-year-old children. All Shabbat activities end at 12pm.
5TH AND 6TH GRADE: Our weekday program meets twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:45-5:45 pm. During the week, students have the opportunity to delve into services in a small group session with our clergy; exploring prayer, liturgy and music.
5th & 6th Grade Alef/Bet Schedule
• Alef schedule (9 am-11 am) and Bet schedule (10:30 am - 12:30 pm)
• An every other month family learning session led by our Clergy, with an oneg, a festive breakfast from either 9 am –10:30am (Alef) or 11 am - 12:30 pm (Bet)
• A weekly family service in the main Sanctuary from 10:30-11 am for all families in 3rd-6th grade (and a parallel service for Grades K-2)
All of this is in addition to our pre-existing Covenant of Learning:
• Regular (weekly) Parent & Child participation in our Sunday learning and services
• Exemplary participation in our J-Lectives program
• Student participation in a 40 minute small group Hebrew learning session, scheduled individually, Monday-Thursday.
• Learning as a family within and outside the Temple throughout the week.
J-LECTIVES!: All 5th, 6th & 7th Grade students (regardless of the program they choose) are expected to participate in J-Lectives. These experiential activities take our students out of the classroom and into the world, helping them make new friends and find their own Jewish paths. We offer a wide-range of activities to meet every interest and schedule. We encourage students who participate in community service and other events at the Temple to apply for J-Lective “credit” for their participation.
7th Grade: The 7th Grade B2Mitzvah Program: Boneh (Building) B'nei Mitzvah meets on Wednesday nights from 5:15pm - 7:00pm. Our kids are in formation: building character, building life skills, and building Jewish identity. This curriculum addresses a challenging and critical time in a child's life.The students are placed in color groups based on their B'nei Mitzvah date and rotate between five different workshops throughout the year. The B2Mitzvah program features five Workshops, with five important goals: (1) Building the necessary skills to lead the Bar/Bat Mitzvah service from the bimah. (2) Building a D'var Torah, the speech that each child delivers at Bar/Bat Mitzvah. (3) Building a mitzvah project and an abiding commitment to helping others. (4) Building one's character as a young Jewish man or woman. And (5) Building an awareness of the Holocaust and the Jewish directive to build a more just and compassionate world. Please click here to download our flyer for the program.
Teens @ WRT – 8th Through 12th Grade
8th and 9th Grade: The 8th & 9th grade meet as part of our Mercaz program on Wednesday nights from 6:30pm -8:30pm. The evening includes dinner, an hour of elective time where each teen chooses a class based on their interests and our course offerings, and a half hour of grade wide community time. The theme of the 8th grade year is Clal Yisrael, our connection to Jews throughout the world. We return to this theme and how it manifests itself in different ways as we learn together as a class and travel together to Alabama in the footsteps of the Civil Rights Movement. The theme of the 9th grade year is Tikkun Olam, trying to heal our fractured world. Throughout the year we will explore contemporary and historic social justice issues. The 9th grade class will have the opportunity to travel with Rabbi Blake to New Orleans to engage in Jewish history and social action
10th Grade (Confirmation*): The Confirmation year at WRT is one of the most meaningful experiences we offer our youth. Through thought-provoking programming and conversations, we strive to help our teens crystallize their identity, both as Jews and as human beings, to cultivate a sense of responsibility for others, and to feel a sense of connection with one another and with the Jewish people.
Our 10th grade program is multifaceted and encompasses our five pillars: Avodah/Spirituality, Chavurah/Community, Talmud Torah/Lifelong Jewish Learning, Tikkun Olam/Repairing the World, and Clal Yisrael/Jewish Peoplehood. Wednesday nights, retreats, rehearsals, social action programs, religious and cultural programs, as well as the Consecration and Confirmation services, make up the essential parts of this year. *The Confirmation program meets on Wednesday evenings from 6:30pm - 8:30pm as part of our regular Mercaz program; social justice activities take place select Sundays throughout the year.
11th and 12th Grade (POST CONFIRMATION**): The Packing for College program meets twice a month: once on a Wednesday from 6:30-8:30pm for a more traditional Mercaz class, and once a month on Sundays from 11:30am-1:00pm for a “brunch and learn” with one of our Rabbis and Cantors. The Packing for College class is a two year curriculum which aims to provide our young adults with the tools and skills that they need to feel proud of who they are, and also to grapple with some of the tough issues that we all struggle with like anti-Semitism and Israel, and how to be Jewish on campus. We welcome our teens throughout the year
SCHEDULES FOR KINDERGARTEN THROUGH 12 GRADE
Quick Overview of our School Schedule here
Kindergarten through 2nd Grade:
ALEF: Sundays 9:00-11:00am
BET: Sundays 10:30am-12:30pm
Sharing Shabbat: Saturdays 9:00am-12:00pm
3rd & 4th Grades:
ALEF: Sundays 9:00-11:00am and Tuesdays 3:45-5:00pm
BET: Sundays 10:30am-12:30pm and Wednesdays 3:45-5:00pm
Sharing Shabbat: Saturdays 9:00am-12:00pm and Thursdays 3:45-5:00pm
5th & 6th Grades:
ALEF: 9:00am-11:00am and a mid-week 40 minutes Hebrew tutoring session.
BET: 10:30am-12:30pm and a mid-week 40 minutes Hebrew tutoring session.
Sharing Shabbat: Saturdays 9:00am-12:00pm and Thursdays 3:45-5:45pm
Weekday: Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:45-5:45pm
Wednesdays from 5:15-7:00pm
8th & 9th Grades - Mercaz:
Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30pm
10th Grade - Confirmation:
Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30pm and Social Action events around once a month throughout the year
11th & 12th Grades - Packing for College:
Once a month each: Sundays 11:30am-1pm and Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30pm