Every child has a gift...
Our students, aged 4½ to 12 years old, will some day be the scientists, lawyers, educators, actors, musicians, designers, businesspeople, executives, photographers, accountants, and even rabbis of the future, and we believe that the earlier a person can identify the gifts that s/he possess, the more opportunity there will be to cultivate those talents. The areas of thought, exploration, and creation that give a particular student a feeling of self-actualization and self-worth, must be engaged in a way that keeps the student interested, challenged, and encouraged.
In order to accomplish this task, our school believes in:
• Positive reinforcement and positive responses to student work and behavior
• Student-centered classrooms with differentiated instruction
• Closely monitoring each student’s educational journey
• Exposing students to a variety of academic and artistic experiences
• Collaborative projects involving multiple disciplines
• Supporting original and innovative ideas
• Encouraging critical thinking skills and student interpretations
In addition to these beliefs, Jewish customs, rituals, values and teachings contribute in a significant way to help ensure our students can succeed in the future. Understanding who you are, where you came from, what those have believed who came before you are important in the development of the mind and the soul. Interpreting our ancient literature fosters creativity, encourages a higher level of critical thinking, and bonds our students to their roots. The value-based Judaic curriculum cultivates positive behavior and a caring attitude towards others. Learning a foreign language, Hebrew, not only ensures that our students can participate in any synagogue in the world, but also promotes the acquisition of other foreign languages in the future. Secular studies at Temple Emanuel Academy Day School, combined with Judaic studies, provide our students with nourishment for the mind and the spirit, creating enthusiastic learners and kind souls.
Judaism also supports the idea of every individual having a specific wisdom that is special to them. Three times in the Hebrew bible, a person is described as having “Ruach Chochmah” – a spirit of wisdom: Exodus, when referring to those artisans who made the garments of the High Priest; Deuteronomy, when referring to Joshua at the moment the leadership passed to him from Moses; and in Isaiah, when describing the characteristics of the messiah. These three examples can serve us well in understanding the gifts found in our students. The spirit of wisdom is found in any who exhibit expertise in a particular subject or artistry. The spirit of wisdom is found in the confidence and self esteem of a leader. The spirit of wisdom is contained in those who are drawn to making the world a better and more complete place.
Every child has a gift…for us, this phrase is not merely a slogan, it is an imperative, it is a directive to our administration, our teachers, and in turn, to our students, to recognize and enrich that which is special in each child at Temple Emanuel Academy Day School.