Congregation Brith Sholem’s religious school is open to all children in our community. Taught by volunteers, the school aims to build Jewish identity and increase involvement in its students by teaching Hebrew and Judaic studies (focusing on topics of Jewish history and culture, study, worship, and other aspects of living a Jewish life).
Our philosophy toward religious education as well as the scope and sequence of our curriculum are based upon the Goals of Reform Jewish Education and suggestions from Rabbi Lawrence N. Mahrer and Debi Mahrer Rowe in their book A Guide to Small Congregation Religious Schools.
The goal of Congregation Brith Sholem’s Religious School is for students to build a Jewish identity and increase involvement in the Jewish community by:
1. learning about Jewish heritage, holidays, texts and life cycle events and how to observe them;
2. developing a knowledge of Hebrew which will allow them to read fluently and master basic prayers;
3. becoming familiar with worship services and synagogue life throughout the world; and
4. learning and practicing the principles of tikkun olam (“perfecting the world”).
Because our school meets only once per week and because of our small class sizes, we have combined-grade classrooms and a two-year rotating curriculum for grades preschool through 7th grade. Our curriculum is designed to provide students with a basic Jewish education, covering a wide range of topics over the years each student spends in religious school. Hebrew instruction is focused on liturgical Hebrew. The curriculum is divided into five content areas in addition to Hebrew. These content areas are God, Torah, Israel, Celebrations, and Ethics. A description of what is to be covered at each grade level is available from the Religious School Coordinator.
By the time our students become b’nai mitzvah they are able to read (or chant) Torah and Haftarah, lead a Shabbat service, make informed decisions about their Jewish practices, and fully participate in the life of the community as Jewish adults.
Classes meet for 2 1/2 hours on Sunday mornings from September through May. Tuition is extremely reasonable. The school relies on participation by parents and is also supported by donations to Brith Sholem’s Children’s Education Fund and by the United Jewish Fund of Utah.