Using innovative techniques and creative resources, Bet Torah Religious School seeks to accomplish its mission by offering an extensive program that is responsive to the talents and developmental needs of our students. We believe that excellence is achieved through adherence to requirements and policies, and through a strong partnership between family and school.
The school program is divided into four levels: Primary - Gan - Bet (ages 5-7), an introduction to Jewish life and studies; Elementary, Gimel – Hey, (ages 8-10), which provides the foundation of Hebrew language, prayer, liturgy, and Jewish values, culture, and history; Middle School, Vav and Zayin (ages 11, 12), providing Bar/Bat Mitzvah preparatory skills, and the foundation of conversational Hebrew language; and High School (ages 13-17), an advanced program featuring a wide variety of courses in a less structured atmosphere.
Approximately three hours of class time each week are devoted to the study of the Hebrew language, prayers, and rituals, with the remaining three hours allocated to Jewish history, Israel, Jewish customs and culture, and current events.
By the time students reach Bar/Bat Mitzvah age, they should have
- The ability to read, chant, and understand key Hebrew prayers.
- Knowledge of the structure and meaning of religious services.
- Familiarity with the narrative content of the Bible.
- An understanding of and the skills to practice the Mitzvot.
- An understanding of the Jewish approach to life cycle events.
- An understanding of the observance and importance of Shabbat and Jewish holidays.
- Knowledge of ancient Jewish heroes as well as contemporary Jewish history.
- Knowledge of the history, geography, politics, and culture of modern Israel.
- Rudimentary skills in conversational Hebrew.
Students are provided with textbooks and workbooks. Teachers supplement lessons with visual aids, hands-on projects, class trips, special programs, discussions, music, drama, crafts, and storytelling. Age-appropriate material is introduced at each level, reinforcing the material covered each year.
Mastery of subject matter is extremely important. Teachers ascertain a student’s progress at prescribed “checkpoints” throughout the school year. Enrichment materials are provided to those students demonstrating a good grasp of the subject matter, while those in need of remedial or special attention are offered support in the Resource Room.