Kesher = קֶשֶׁר = connection

Kesher Sunday School Program
Experiential, values-driven school for infants through high school students, and their families

Shalom! Welcome to Congregation Beth Israel’s Kesher Center for Jewish Learning!

Registration for Kesher  2020/2021 school year is now open! Please click here to enroll your children and set up your payment plan.

Early bird discount for CBI members of $25 per child will end on June 30th. We encourage you to enroll as early as possible, as this helps us know our staffing needs well before the start of the school year.

Thank you so much for your continued support of this special community, and for your commitment to Jewish education. We so look forward to seeing you all next fall, and connecting as much as possible over the summer. In whatever capacity we will be able to gather in September, we will provide

Our mission is to create enduring experiences that challenge our students and families to engage creatively with their Judaism and inspire life-long learning.

Our goals are to:

  1. Help students and families discover the ways Judaism is relevant to their own lives.
  2. Build a solid foundation of Jewish knowledge, and experiences with that knowledge, to develop a strong and positive Jewish identity.
  3. Instill Jewish values in a way that students can apply them to their contemporary lives.
  4. Engage entire families in their Jewish journey.
  5. Create a Kehila Kedoshah – a holy community whose culture celebrates each person’s unique Jewish expression and contributions.
  6. Inspire our community to add richness and meaning to their lives by passing on the wisdom and tools our Jewish heritage offers us.
  7. Prepare our students to be confident prayer leaders and teachers of Torah for their b’nei mitzvah service.

We work towards these goals with a curriculum that meets students where they are, yet challenges them to try new things, think critically, and grow. We see the teacher’s role as a catalyst for students’ exploration and growth. We train our teachers with the skills and philosophy of experiential education, to create activities involving hands-on learning and “doing” the concepts we are learning about. The content of our curriculum means very little and will not go beyond the classroom if it is not combined with meaningful experiences, which allow the learner to connect personally to the content. We also believe that in order to accomplish these goals, Kesher and home must work together as partners. Together with our Kesher co-directors and teachers, we urge parents and caregivers to be co-learners and teachers as well.

Our doors are always open and you are always welcome. ! ברוכים הבאים

— Co-Directors Andrea Shupack and Nicky Naiman

Kesher Curriculum

“Al Shloshah D’varim” On three things the world stands. These core Jewish values make up the essential elements infused into each grade’s curriculum.

Torah: Immersing in our texts on many levels and through many mediums, we discover how Torah is relevant to our lives, and how its teachings can guide our actions and choices.

Avodah: means “work”, “prayer”, and “service.” Every week in Kesher we gather in community for prayer, the service of our hearts. Our liturgy helps us practice gratitude, giving thanks, and asking for what we need. The school-wide tefilah time and individual study helps students gain the confidence they need in reading Hebrew and reciting the prayers, preparing them to be master leaders by the time they become b’nei mitzvah and allowing them to feel comfortable and able to participate fully in any Reform Jewish service. We also explore the themes and connect personally to the prayers, learning how our ancient texts can provide comfort and also challenge us to be the best people we can be.

G’milut Chasadim: Acts of loving kindness. Holidays, Torah, how we learn Hebrew, practicing Jewish values, and learning a commitment to Jewish ethics, permeates all that we do at Kesher at every grade level and within our overall school culture.

For any questions and for registration information, email kesher@bethisraelbellingham.org or call 360.733.8890