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The Irving and Edith Friedman Academy of Jewish Learning

Living a rich Jewish life is accomplished, in part, by receiving meaningful education.  Congregation B’nai Israel aims to foster the creation of Jewish adults who can actively and confidently participate in Jewish life. Our synagogue offers Religious School, Bar / Bat Mitzvah training, and a Confirmation program to build the foundation and help to keep the Torah as presence in our childrens’ lives. Contact our Religious School Director, Sarah Egelman, for more information.

Classes at the Academy are open to learners pre-K through 10th grade, offering a welcoming, creative, fun, and conscientious approach to Jewish supplementary education.  The curriculum includes both Judaics and Hebrew, with each new lesson, building upon the previous concepts, skills, and understanding. Our Hebrew curriculum emphasizes Hebrew as the traditional Jewish textual and ritual language with the goal of becoming proficient in reading and decoding prayers as well as fostering a personal connection to the Hebrew language. Our Judaics curriculum includes a wide variety of topics that include Jewish holy days, Tanakh, ethics, Jewish history, customs, diversity and Diaspora. Students take part in relevant field trips, mitzvah projects, and communal holiday celebrations and family participation is encouraged. 

Our professional staff of dedicated teachers provides hands-on, engaging instruction. Small class sizes allow all students to receive individualized attention.  We are an inclusive and diverse community and we welcome families from all backgrounds and levels of observance.

Classes meet on Sunday mornings and Tuesday evenings.

As students approach the one year mark prior to Bar / Bat Mitzvah-age celebrations, they begin learning their Torah and Haftarah portions and how to lead the congregation’s religious services. For this special coming-of-age milestone, students receive ability-based, one-on-one tutoring to ensure they meet their goals and families’ expectations.

A 3-year program for students in 8th to 10th grade. Confirmation classes are centered on project-based learning. Students choose and create mitzvah and community projects, attend relevant field trips, meet with guest speakers, and serve as peer tutors and mentors to younger students at the Religious School.

Classes are structured to encourage discussion. Students explore a variety of topics in month-long units of study: Israel and Palestine, gender in Judaism, Jewish movements, halacha, social justice, and more. Students are encouraged to ask the ‘big questions,’ develop critical thinking, and become active participants in their learning.