Children's Classes: Courses

 

Celebrating Our Traditions: 

 

Great Stories 

This course aims to familiarize learners with the yearly cycle of holidays by emphasizing the ways the stories connect us to the traditions and inspire us to celebrate, learn and grow together.  It is a chance to enter into the captivating stories associated with different holidays and traditions. 

 

God and Me 

This course continues to familiarize learners with the cycle of holidays through Biblical stories with an emphasis on creating a personal relationship with God. Through a deeper understanding of the holiday traditions and the relationship with God behind those traditions, the students will also connect feeling close to God with celebrating as a community. This course helps children relate holiday celebrations to their own spirituality and focuses on building a personal relationship with God. 

 

Exploring Our Bibles:

 

Doing the Right Thing 

This course aims to introduce children to basic Bible stories from the Torah and the Gospels, with an emphasis on the ethical values drawn from these stories. Major characters such as Abraham, Moses, and Jacob; Jesus, The Disciples, and Mary are introduced. Values such as hospitality, forgiveness, and sharing are emphasized.

 

Bible Heroes 

This course aims to familiarize students with the great Bible characters from Biblical stories in both Jewish and Christian tradition – such as Joshua, David, and Paul. Students will learn the stories of these heroes and heroines and will understand why we continue to tell their stories today.


Bible and Prayer:

 

Sacred Texts 

This course aims to provide children with an understanding of the holy writings of both traditions, how they are organized and the roles they play in supporting the teachings of each faith and in fostering a connection to God.  This course will deepen the children’s understanding of the major Biblical stories and will also introduce them to Psalms, prayers, and other sacred texts.

 

Rituals and Sacred Spaces 

This course has several key aims. One is to familiarize students with Jewish and Christian places of worship, allowing them to understand the space, why it is considered sacred, and to gain some basic knowledge of what they see around them.  It also focuses on the ways people continue to affirm their relationship with God through various life cycle rituals. Students will learn about life cycle rituals and the central prayers that are common to regular services as well as special occasions. Students will also learn how both religions ritualize certain common things such as food and music and some of the various practices that have arisen surrounding these items.  All of this is designed to be enhanced by an emphasis on prayer and connection with God.

 

People and Places

This course focuses on cultural and historical backgrounds of places that had historical significance to Judaism, Christianity, or both. The course will allow children to understand how Judaism and Christianity developed over the past 3000 years. Further, students will begin to understand the diverse ways in which these religions have been practiced over time.

 

Identity & Transition: 

 

Designed for students entering their teens, this two year course focuses on issues of religious identity and what it means to have an engaged spirituality in either tradition. Students participate in inter-chapter retreats and learn about the history and culture of both traditions and consider their own religious affiliations and spirituality. Some may choose to prepare for Bar/Bat Mitzvah or Christian confirmation, while others will continue their religious journeys.