Temple Israel’s Kehillah School promotes the development of young children from 6 weeks to 6 years of age in a nurturing and stimulating play-based program that encourages creativity, decision-making and problem-solving skills, spiritual growth, and a joy of learning. Age-appropriate activities challenge each child to develop his/her social, emotional, intellectual, physical and spiritual potential. Teachers here are emotionally responsive to the children in their care, as the building and strengthening of healthy relationships is a priority of ours. The ever-changing, emergent curriculum provides children with opportunities to delve into questions as they arise, teaching them the merits of intellectual curiosity. In fully exploring topics of relevance to them, learning through imaginative play, and expressing themselves through a variety of media, children emerge from this program with strong foundations of independence and self-esteem that are critical to their ongoing personal and academic development.
With small class sizes and low student-to-teacher ratios, individualized attention can be given to every child and family in our program. We understand that each child progresses at his or her own pace in all aspects of learning and extend support and encouragement each step of the way. The children begin word recognition upon entering preschool in our Oleem Class and continue with Kindergarten Readiness in our upper level Chavayreem and G’shareem classes. An additional year of preparation for kindergarten is an option for five and six-year-old students. The educational program offered here serves as a developmental scaffolding from one stage to the next as each child reaches for new experiences and discoveries.
At the Kehillah School, ethical lessons inherent to Judaism are interwoven with the secular curriculum to build moral character and instill values of lifelong significance in our students. Monthly themes, from G’meeloot chasadeem (acts of loving kindness and Kehillah (community) to Tzar Ba’alay Chayeem (kindness to animals), Shalom Bayeet (peace and completeness in the home) and Sh’mee-aht Ha-Ozen (being a good listener) are among the meaningful lessons taught to our children every day in class as well as by the senior staff and clergy through recorded stories that children bring home with them to listen to in the car, at bedtime or with their entire family. The students of Kehillah learn not only through pre-academic readiness, but also through experiences that nourish the soul.