our Jewish Heritage
Our Jewish Studies program connects students to Jewish heritage, culture and language.
Our Jewish Studies curriculum provides students with a strong knowledge base. It fosters Jewish identity and a meaningful and authentic connection to Israel and Diaspora communities. Through the study of Hebrew language and literature, Bible studies, Jewish holidays, music, and Moreshet, our students examine who makes up the Jewish people, our key languages, tunes, customs and traditions.
Students learn our Jewish history and values, Zionism, modern Israel, modern Diaspora communities, Antisemitism and the Holocaust. With Hebrew as the language of instruction in most of our Jewish Studies subjects, Hebrew immersion is the central focus of our program and students reach a high level of proficiency by graduation.
The progression of our curriculum can be seen in the range of Jewish Studies programs offered from Kindergarten to Grade 8:
The Ivrit BaGan program imparts a basic knowledge of spoken Hebrew to our Kindergarten students, laying the groundwork for future Hebrew proficiency.
A full-time Hebrew assistant placed in every SK classroom helps to create an immersive Hebrew environment. This provides our students with a rich and meaningful linguistic and cultural experience and contributes to the development of language cognition.
Grades 1 - 5
Jewish Studies homeroom teachers spend half of each day teaching our students Hebrew language and literature, Bible studies and the Jewish holidays. Students also learn Hebrew, Yiddish and Ladino songs in music class. A celebration of learning is held annually that welcomes families to “schep nachas” over the advanced Hebrew skills and knowledge of their children.
In Senior Division, in addition to Hebrew, the Jewish holidays and Bible studies, we introduce our Moreshet course that is aimed to spark questions through rigorous text study and meaningful conversation. This course — the only course of its kind — invites students to reflect on their personal Moreshet, or heritage, throughout the learning journey. It draws on inquiry-based learning and the Chevrutah approach, where small groups of students work to understand the meaning of a passage and apply it to larger issues in everyday life. This teaches our students to be curious and to use their critical thinking skills.
Also in the Senior Division, Bialik is one of the few Jewish day schools in North America that teaches a Yiddish course, offering students a deeper insight into European Jewish history and culture.