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6th-7th Grade Programs

About
Schedule
Programming
BAJY: Beth Am Junior Youth

Our 6th-7th grade program joins our pre-B’nei Mitzvah students to build a cohort of learners and provides them with rich opportunities to engage in study with our clergy and educators as they prepare for Jewish adulthood. Students engage in a critical read of Torah, explore the meanings of prayers, and learn about the Holocaust and human behavior.

Interspersed with our core classes, 6th-7th graders will choose from a variety of 2-session holiday workshops, exploring Jewish holiday themes through art, cooking, science, drama and more!

Students build Hebrew reading skills in 6th-7th grade Hebrew or individual tutoring, and those choosing to celebrate B’nei Mitzvah at Beth Am begin our Beit Midrash program seven months prior to B’nei Mitzvah.

Sundays, 9:00 AM - 11:30 AM:

  • 9:00-9:45 AM: 6th-7th Grade Hebrew* or Beit Midrash
  • 9:45-10:15 AM: Beit Midrash T’filah with Cantor Shpall (all 6th & 7th graders)
  • 10:15-10:30 AM: Hafsakah (break)
  • 10:30-11:30 AM: Core Class with Rabbis & Educators

*6th-7th Grade Hebrew also offered on Wednesdays or as Individual Tutoring

Programming
Our 6th & 7th Grade Program is foundational to building the 6th and 7th grade cohorts, so the program incorporates a large amount of social-emotional learning as part of each session. Students will check in and get to know one another as they begin to form relationships that will hopefully last throughout their teen years at Beth Am and beyond.

The core class curriculum is designed to help our 6th and 7th grade students become critical thinkers as they engage with big ideas in Jewish education— values, Torah, prayer and history:

  • 6th Grade Semester 1: Values (taught by Sarah Lauing)
    6th graders begin their year learning foundational values and skills to become more compassionate human beings. They’ll consider what it means to be part of a Jewish community and how Jewish values such as tzedakah and l’dor va’dor inspire them to give back and make an impact.
     
  • 6th Grade Semester 2  |  7th Grade Semester 1: Torah (taught by our rabbis)
    This is not your second grade Torah curriculum! With Genesis as the core texts, rabbis will guide the 6th graders to pull apart each story and engage in a critical read, seeing Torah through the lens of literary criticism, social and historical context, Rabbinic interpretation and their own personal perspectives. This curriculum prepares students to begin the process of d’var Torah and provides them with skills to understand Torah for the rest of their adult Jewish lives.
     
  • 7th Grade Semester 2: History & Holocaust (taught by Chelsea Mandell)
    Based on a curriculum from Facing History and Ourselves, 7th graders learn about the catastrophic period of the Holocaust from a historical perspective and consider what this particular history has to do with what it means to be Jewish today. They consider Jewish collective memory, Jewish identity, power and privilege and resilience and resistance, while learning about Jewish history from World War I through the Holocaust.
     
  • Prayer Learning
    Prayer learning happens during the Hebrew session, during which students take part in our 6th-7th Grade Hebrew groups, or join the Beit Midrash B’nei Mitzvah preparation program. While reinforcing their skills in pronouncing and chanting the Hebrew words of the prayers, students also explore major themes in our liturgy, connected to Hebrew root words such as kadosh (holiness) or ahava (love). The prayers come to life during Beit Midrash T’filah with Cantor Shpall, as 6th and 7th graders come together not only to pray together in community, but to discuss the meanings of the morning prayers on a middle school level in real time.
     
  • Holiday Workshops
    Three times throughout the year, students also have the chance to participate in 2-session holiday workshops of their choosing, exploring holiday themes on a deeper level through the lens of art journaling, science, improv, cooking and more! These modalities allow our middle schoolers to deepen their understanding of the holiday cycle and engage in Jewish learning while pursuing their own interests.

BAJY: Beth Am Junior Youth
Our middle school youth group provides a space for tweens to enjoy fun Jewish experiences with each other. Events include social, cultural, educational and social action opportunities, as well as opportunities for peer-to-peer leadership.

Fri, October 30 2020 12 Cheshvan 5781