From the Corridors of the Religious School

Cantor-Educator Elena Schwartz


We are delighted to announce the beginning of registration for the 2017-2018 school year. As you know, our highest priority at Temple Sinai Religious School is the education of our children. Together with the clergy, Education Committee and teachers, we are committed to providing the richest, most creative Jewish learning opportunities, in ways that are relevant to today’s young learners. Temple Sinai Religious School is embracing the 21st century and all of the innovations that have come with it!

As we plan for a new school year, I would like to outline several of our creative and exciting Jewish Education programs:

1)  I am delighted to share with you a very exciting new initiative in which Temple Sinai Religious School has developed Gesher (Bridge) Afterschool Program for Students in Kindergarten Through Fifth Grade. Thanks to the visionary support of our Education Committee, this new pilot program will help to meet the various scheduling needs of our families and provide opportunities for enrichment and homework support prior to the regular Religious School classes. Bus transportation will be provided by First Student Transportation from East Hills Elementary and Harbor Hill Elementary Schools. Our staff will be present at all times! Our teachers and staff will coordinate dismissal from elementary schools, ride with students on the bus to the Temple, and will supervise students during snack/homework time. Clubs will be taught by instructors who are highly regarded in our community.

2)  If you have a Kindergarten through Second Grader, please consider our Pilot Torah Explorers Program. Torah Explorers students attend one day per week. In its third year, this program has been a great success! The Torah Explorers program incorporates stories, art, singing, dancing, yoga and hands-on activities. It offers a flexible trimester schedule, where students can attend the full year or build a program that meets their needs and choose to attend one or two semesters.

3)  Small Group Tutorial is an innovative program for students in Grades Four through Six. The students meet once a week for two hours in a small group. The location, days and times of the class can be determined by the parents and tutor. In addition to weekly tutorials, students are expected to attend one Shabbat service a month, Mitzvah Day, and some additional Temple events. 

4)  Our outstanding Hevra­Family Learning Program is once again offered Monday through Thursday. Hevra students attend class one day per week. Families sign up for 6 of 10 Shabbat and weekend family learning experiences. You may sign up for the sessions that meet your scheduling needs. You learn, eat and sing together as a family. The Hevra program is one of our most popular offerings because children and their parents spend quality time together enjoying exciting Jewish experiences.

5)  Hineni-Mitzvah Education Initiative offers our families a flexible learning model where students focus on tikkun olam and community service. Hineni is also for students in Grades Four  through Six. Hineni students will attend class one day per week. For Hebrew language instruction, Hineni students will be placed in groups of six. Hineni tikkun olam projects, such as helping the underprivileged, healing the environment, brightening the lives of the elderly, working with children with special needs and much, much more, will be held on a variety of weekday late afternoons and evenings, or Sunday mornings. 

6)  For Fourth through Sixth Grade families who want to make their children’s Jewish education a priority we are once again offering the Kavod Plus Program. Students attend twice a week: Monday/Wednesday or Tuesday/Thursday. We are also exploring the option of incorporating an innovative on-line learning component into this program. In addition to the required Judaic and Hebrew prayer curriculum, Kavod Plus students will be exposed to the Modern Hebrew that is spoken today in the State of Israel, learn Torah and Haftarah cantillation, and explore Jewish History.

7)  In order to better meet the needs of children with Individualized Education Plans and 504 Plans, we will continue to offer Kadima. Kadima, which means “forward” in Hebrew, is a Hebrew tutorial program that provides students with individualized instruction at the synagogue or in the student’s home. Tutors are experienced special-needs educators.

8)  Temple Sinai Youth Choir will once again meet Monday through Thursday, at the beginning of each class session; from 4:10-4:30pm. Cantor Sergei Schwartz encourages all students in grades Kindergarten through Six, who love to sing, to join the Choir! 

In order to secure a space for your child for the next school year we ask parents to register as soon as possible. Registering early will enable us to plan properly for classes, teachers, books, and supplies. We ask you to please assist us, so that we can be well prepared for the coming school year. Take advantage of our Early Bird rates, now through June 15!

Wishing you all Chag Purim Sameach – Happy Purim!

Cantor-Educator Elena Schwartz



Make My Sinai Your Sinai