I am finishing my fourth year at Temple Shalom as one of the Educators in the SHACHARIT program and it is incredible to think back to where we were when I started. The SHACHARIT program has developed into a fabulous program under Rabbi Berry’s leadership and our families are happy, our kids are learning and we are growing! Sunday mornings are a hive of activity between adults’ schmoozing with a cup of coffee in their hand, our big kids smiling as they switch classes between Core Judaica and Chugim (electives), and our youngest children full of energy as they go to the chapel for music or class from Family T’Filah (prayer). During the week, as I visit our small group Hebrew classes, I hear kids chanting prayers, playing Hebrew games and creating Hebrew resources on the iPads for themselves and their peers. We no longer hear grumbles of why do I have to do this? Or I’m so bored! Our kids are excited and happy to be at Temple Shalom!
I too am excited and happy to be at Temple Shalom! Beginning in July, I look forward to stepping up as the new Director of SHACHARIT. I am thankful for the guidance and support I have received from Rabbi Berry over the past several years. As Rabbi Berry transitions into her new position on our clergy team, I am grateful she will be at Temple Shalom and continue to support our staff and SHACHARIT families as I transition into my new role.
Looking to the future: My goal for the year ahead is to continue to grow and develop our already successful SHACHARIT program. All of the education staff value the opportunity to continuously learn and develop their skills. This past year, as part of my own professional development, I participated in a Clinical Mentoring program at Hebrew College, where I honed my own understanding of how to better support and mentor teachers. I was grateful for the opportunity and I plan on using what I learned to deepen the preparation and mentoring we provide to all of our staff. Other important areas of focus will be the creation of a longer term Judaic curriculum for Grades 3-6 and some deeper exploration and needs assessment of our current 6th grade program and how we can continue to support the unique developmental stage of this age group.
I am excited to start at Temple Shalom full-time this summer as the Director of SHACHARIT. If we have not had the opportunity to connect in a while or we have not personally met join me for a cup of coffee sometime in July or August! You can reach me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
L’Shalom (In peace),