Grades 7, 8, 9 & 10
Grade 7 Sunday from 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
7th Grade: Our seventh grade year gives our students the opportunity to lead other students in our school as prayer leaders and cultural touchstones. As the oldest students in our facility on Sundays, they have the chance to set a special tone for their younger peers. They continue to move into their roles as not just learners but also teachers of Torah, especially through acting as class “buddies”. A high point of this ”teacher” identity formation comes to fruition as students teach about their Torah portions on the bimah as they become b. mitzvah. In addition to the one-on-one b. mitzvah tutoring in which many of our seventh graders are involved (on their own time), students will augment their Hebrew through their weekly study of modern, conversational Hebrew. Having built a firm foundation in the narrative and values of Torah, seventh graders will use some Project-Based Learning to explore Jewish history beyond the Torah story. They will also continue their focused look at how the Nevi’im/Prophets and the Prophetic tradition inform our ethics and action in the forum of history.
Seventh graders are working on developing strong peer connections, and personal identity and beliefs. Developmentally, they are also exploring their potential impact in the larger world. As such, the seventh grade community uses part of their year to develop group mitzvah projects and field trips.
We encourage our seventh graders to enrich their peer-based Jewish experience through participation in BAFTY678 programs at various points throughout the year.
Grades 8 & 9
Grades 8-9 Tuesday evening from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
8th & 9th Grades: Eighth and ninth graders study together in a two-year rotating curriculum. This gives our students a chance to develop more peer connections across grades and to learn from different peer thinkers. Using Project-Based Learning as an important tool, our eighth and ninth graders continue their seventh grade examination of world Jewish history. Students are encouraged to use the lens of history to place themselves and their growing identity in the story of Jewish experience. Eighth and ninth graders will also focus on the Jewish lifecycle from the more mature perspective of post-b. mitzvah Jews. Highlights of this learning include field trips, guest speakers and simulation programs on the rituals of Jewish life cycle.
As a continuation of students’ exploration of their relationship with the Land of Israel, students will participate in a unique six-week unit on the Israeli Supreme Court. Students will unpack the ethical dilemmas presented by actual case studies that have faced Israeli society and further develop their own ethical positions.
These young teens are working on developing stronger peer connections, and personal identity and beliefs. Developmentally, they are also exploring their potential impact in the larger world. As such, the class community uses part of their year to develop group mitzvah projects and field trips.
Beginning in eighth grade, students continue to move into their roles as not just learners but also teachers of Torah. They are invited to serve as madrichim (classroom aides) on Sunday mornings. They may serve in this paid or community service role through their twelfth grade year, regardless of their enrollment status in our Mensch Lab. We also encourage our eighth graders to enrich their peer-based Jewish experience through participation in BAFTY678 programs at various points throughout the year. Similarly, we encourage our students in grades 9-12 to participate and lead as part of BAFTY, our senior high school youth group affiliated with the North American Federation of Temple Youth.
Grade 10 Tuesday evening from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Plus special trips and programs at additional dates and times
Confirmation and Shavuot Service – June 9, 2019, 10:00a.m. in Molish Sanctuary
10th Grade: Enrich Throughout this special Confirmation year, students will challenge themselves in ways they never have before. They will explore the big questions of who they are becoming, and what they want their lives and their Judaism to be about? Students will do, think, feel, create and REACT to things that affect them in their everyday lives as part of the learning process. They will look at contemporary ethical questions that don’t have easy answers. They will look more deeply at the Jewish story and and integrate their own story into this narrative. An important culmination to student learning is their crafting of a focused statement of Jewish identity which they will each share as part of our Shavuot Confirmation service of celebration.
As students develop more mature and independent lenses for their lives, they will participate in a number of special Confirmation events, including field trips and mitzvah projects both in and out of town. Along with their families, they will participate in congregational celebration of their accomplishments and contributions.
Tenth graders are also invited to become or to continue their roles as teachers of Torah. We encourage them to serve as madrichim (classroom aides) on Sunday mornings for younger students. They may serve in this paid or community service role through their twelfth grade year, regardless of their enrollment status in our Mensch Lab. We also encourage our tenth graders to enhance their engagement with their peers and Jewish community by leading and participating in BAFTY, our senior high school youth group affiliated with the North American Federation of Temple Youth.
***L’Taken Seminar (Teens Only): The L’Taken Seminar is a four-day retreat in Washington, DC through which our 9th and 10th graders are invited join 250-300 other teens from around the country. The weekend focuses on learning about different social and political issues, how we as Reform Jews approach these issues and how we as Americans lobby in support of our views. We end the weekend with a face-to-face meeting with our own representatives on Capitol Hill to discuss our views. This year, Beth Am students are invited to participate in the Feb. 22-25, 2019 seminar.