Meets Tuesdays 4:00-6:15 pm and Sundays 9:30-11:45 am
The program for Valley Beth Shalom 7th grade students is designed to make Judaism relevant in a dynamic and innovative way. By the time students reach adolescence, their questions are bigger, their lives are more hectic, and preparation for their Bar or Bat Mitzvah has begun. This program provides students with the opportunity to do in-depth Torah study and apply it to areas that are interesting and meaningful to them.
Project Based Learning
The curriculum for 7th grade offers different opportunities to express their learning. In other words, within the course of learning, students will be given project opportunities to develop and synthesize the concepts and themes they have studied. Each unit is deeply embedded in Jewish values and students track the development of that value from the Torah through Rabbinic literature until today.
The general areas of study for which students will be creating projects include:
- B’tzelem Elohim – Being Created in God’s Image
- Bal Tashchit and Shomrei Adamah – Responsibility to Care for the Earth
- Kol Yisrael Areivim Zeh La-Zeh – Jewish Responsibility for Other Jews
- Shemirat Ha-Nefesh, Shemirat Ha-Guf – Caring for Body and Soul
- Israel: The Jewish Homeland
- The Holocaust and Finding Hope in Despair
Bar and Bat Mitzvah Prep
7th grade students will be intensively involved in Bar and Bat Mitzvah preparation and synagogue skills development. In bi-weekly sessions, students will learn a variety of Tefilah skills and gain insights into the meaning of the tefilot and structure of the service itself. This interactive prayer proficiency preparation includes:
- Pertinent elements of the Shabbat morning service (Shema, Amidah, Ashrei, Torah and Haftarah blessings, Kaddish Shalem)
- Tallit and Tefillin
- Friday Night Seder (Shalom Aleichem, Kiddush, Motzi, Birkat Hamazon)
- Trope (Torah and Haftarah)
Seventh grade students that have completed their Bar or Bat Mitzvah will learn other aspects of leading the service, such as conducting the daily morning service and leading the Torah service.