Religious School 2017-08-03T18:28:30+00:00

Our Children

Our children are the future of Judaism. In turn, each child’s future as a Jew is strengthened and enhanced by a sound Jewish education. Temple Har Zion has developed and implemented a program that helps students to develop strong skills, allowing them to become participating and contributing members of the Jewish community.

Our Teachers

We are proud of our teachers, who are led by our Director of Education, Ronit Strobel-Dahan. Many of our faculty are also members of our congregation, and some are graduates of our own Teacher Training Program. Our teachers are committed to providing their students with a program that is both challenging and stimulating. They are dedicated to passing on their love of Judaism and their knowledge to the next generation.

 Our Religious School

Our Religious School has three components: Beit Midrash, Beir No’ar and Beit Ivrit.

    • Beit Midrash Junior Kindergarten through grade 6. Meets at Leo Baeck Day School on Sunday mornings 9:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
      Children of non-members are welcome up to and including grade 3.
      JK meets once a month, focusing on Jewish holidays and celebrations.. SK – Gr. 2 students study holidays, Shabbat, Torah Arts, music, beginning Hebrew, Jewish life cycle events, and Israel. They participate in services, and are welcome to join the optional Primary Choir Gr. 3 – 6 students follow a curriculum that consists of two of the strands of the CHAI curriculum published by the Union for Reform Judaism (Torah, G’milut Chasadim), as well as an Israel strand and a Jewish Heroes strand. In addition, they participate in Torah Arts, services, as well as optional Junior Choir. Students in grade 3 begin their formal mid-week Hebrew education (see Beit Ivrit).
    • Beit No’ar Senior school, grades 7 – 10 Meets at Temple Har Zion on Monday evenings 6:00 – 8:00 p.m..
    • We are currently working on some wonderful revisions to the Beit No’ar program designed to make it even more engaging for our teens and their needs of today.  Keep checking this site for further updates as the program changes are finalized
    • Parents of Leo Baeck Day School and other day schools please note: All students must attend Beit No’ar during grade 7 in order to be called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah at Temple Har Zion.

 

  • Beit Ivrit Afternoon Hebrew, and prayer skills program, grades 3 – 7 Meets at Temple Har Zion on Tuesday afternoons, 4;45 – 6:45 P.M.
    Children of non-members are welcome to attend Beit Ivrit in grade 3.
    Our program uses Mitkadem, a self-paced Hebrew curriculum published by the Union for Reform Judaism. It is a siddur based curriculum which allows students to develop literacy skills in prayer content so that they may participate in a meaningful way in worship services with their temple community.
  • Enrichment Programs Lilmod B’Yachad – Learning Together We plan a variety of programs which aim to give parents and children an opportunity to learn together. One Sunday a year each grade has a family program during Beit Midrash. The entire school participates during the Shabbat Shira (Shabbat of Song) service. Once a year (usually in the spring) all students and their families participate in a Family Shabbat Morning Service, followed by lunch and a Lilmod B’Yachad learning session. In grade 7, students (with parent(s)) make their own tallit as they prepare to become Bar/Bat Mitzvah. In grade 8, students participate in a parent-teen dialogue facilitated by staff from JF&CS.
    Music In addition to weekly music classes for grades JK-3, we have the following musical options for our students: Primary Choir – open to students in SK-3, practices during class time. Junior Choir – open to students in grades 4-6, practices during class time. The choirs sing at monthly Family Services as well as some other special occasions.
    Kesher LaTorah – Torah Connections Bi-weekly program for students in grades 3-6 that allows them to begin to form an understanding of the connections of Torah, Hebrew language and their own experiences.
    Torah Arts Grades JK-2 – weekly Torah Arts related to holidays, Shabbat and Torah stories. Grades 3-6 – monthly arts program connected to the various grades’ Jewish curriculum.
    Shabbat and Festival Dinners Our Shabbat dinners include one pot-luck dinner, as well as dinners connected to Sukkot and Chanukah.

Bar/Bat Mitzvah

At age thirteen, children who meet the educational requirements of a minimum of five years of attendance at our school may be called to the Torah as a Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Our Cantorial Soloist (or other tutors, when required) works with the students to prepare them to chant their Torah and Haftarah portions and the prayers they will lead during the service. Rabbi Weiss helps them to prepare their Divrei Torah.

Reaffirmation

Approximately a year after Bar/ Bat Mitzvah, we encourage students to chant from the Torah again. This is a way for the young person to reaffirm his/her commitment to Judaism and once again use the skills they acquired to prepare for Bar/Bat Mitzvah.

Confirmation

The final year of Beit No’ar, grade 10, is a special year – the year of Confirmation. Because of their increased maturity, students have the opportunity to study issues at a deeper level. They are taught by rabbis and educators both from Temple Har Zion and other institutions. In addition to their studies, these students show a commitment to their community by fulfilling a community service requirement in one of the areas of Torah, Avodah or G’milut Chasadim. Many choose to volunteer in our Religious School, and some eventually become members of our school staff.

The year begins with a weekend Retreat and ends with a Confirmation Service at Erev Shavuot. The entire year’s experience is a memorable culmination of the students’ Religious School education, and frequently lifelong friendships are cemented.

Youth Groups

We, at Temple Har Zion, are justifiably proud of both our youth groups and our youth. The level of involvement, the strong leadership provided by our youth advisor, Noam Berlin and the outstanding participation and enthusiasm of our youth make this a strong and positive part of temple life.

MHARZY the senior group (grades nine through twelve), is a member of NFTY – Northeast Lakes Council. With a combination of study and social activities, participants are actively involved in the Jewish world. There are trips, special weekends and opportunities to meet other temple groups from Toronto, from other parts of Canada and from the United States. For more information, please visit their website.

JHAZY, (grades seven and eight) is the transition to MHARZY and has its own activities and interests to develop and encourage active participation in the Jewish community.