beyond the classroom
The intentional building of a community of learners is a high priority at BHS Religious School. This happens in our classrooms plus during specially designed programming throughout the year.
At BHS we lift our voices in prayer, song and blessing. Every student participates in music at least once per week. Music is a vehicle to learn about our heritage, express our joy and connect with each other.
Once per week, 4th-6th graders participate in an activity of their choice, known as chug or (plural) chuggim. These are fun, creative activities joyfully interpreted through a Jewish lens. Here students build connections with other BHS students in their own grade and in other grades while sharing an interest or passion. Some examples of past chuggim are Jewish cooking, and creating a musical with a Jewish theme. Twice each year, students share their work with their parents in Chuggim Presentations.
In-School Holiday Programs
BHS Religious School is a community that celebrates together. Several times a year, special programming around holidays unites students with laughter, movement and creativity. Challah and matzah baking, professional puppet shows, the Great Dreidel Spin-off and the Chocolate Seder are all examples of past programs.
We expand the horizons of our 4th-6th graders as we extend our learning out of the classroom. Students explore life cycle rituals with a visit to a progressive and inclusive mikveh and learn about Jewish history and culture at concerts, plays and museums.
5th and 6th Grade Retreat
Once a year, students in grades 5 and 6 travel out of the city for a retreat at a URJ camp. Our Retreat is among the most profound experiences students have during their Religious School time. Learning about Torah while enjoying the woods and fields outdoors, students participate in group-building activities, cooperative learning games, nature hikes, skits, discussions, art, Shabbat dinner, Shabbat morning services, Havdalah, stories and a campfire. What the students experience, learn and share during the retreat is an integral aspect to their formal Jewish education here at Brooklyn Heights.
What could be more fun than an overnight at BHS!? 3rd-6th graders camp out indoors. Students participate in Havdalah as Shabbat ends, get to hang out with Israeli teen leaders, enjoy games, music and movies and maybe some sleeping too.
High Holiday Programming
Students extend their experience of the High Holidays at our age-appropriate drop-off programs held during adult services. On Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, in addition to our Family Services, students can be dropped off for a morning of engaging activities that can include art, drama and holiday snacks.