Welcome to our high school class at Beit Sefer Shalom! Your child will attend school on Wednesdays from 7:00-8:30pm. Like all of our classrooms, the high school curriculum is customized for grades 9 through 12.
Develop a sense of pride in being Jewish in the students and their families.
Develop community among the students in the program.
Develop a sense of community between the high school students and other members of the community (e.g., seniors, younger children, clergy, other parents, etc.)
Inspire students to take Jewish study seriously by offering a variety of subjects of study – Hebrew, Jewish history, Jewish ethics, Jewish arts and cooking,
Engage the students through active, experiential learning.
Include and integrate lay leaders in the community to teach in the curriculum.
Provide networking and mentoring opportunities for Jewish teenagers.
Provide opportunities to gain valuable experiences to enhance college applications.
Program Learning Objectives
By the end of the program (four years), students will be able to:
Name at least three core Jewish values and articulate their meaning.
Highlight increased participation in the Jewish community.
Articulate a sense of Jewish identity and its importance in their lives.
Four-Year Rotation Theme
A core aspect of successful supplemental Jewish school programs is to align the goals of specific programs with larger school goals. In order to achieve this, we offer a four-year high school curriculum based on the core values of the Jewish Federation and Community School – L’Dor V’Dor, Community, Hatikvah, Social Justice. Specifically, each year will revolve around exploring one or more related values.
Year 1: Community
Year 2: Lovingkindness
Year 3: Integrity
Year 4: L’Dor V’Dor and Hatikvah
General Calendar for Year 1 (Community)
First Wednesday of the Month
Community Service Senior Life Center (or another Jewish organization)
Second Wednesday of the Month
Current Events and Issues in the Jewish Community (led by clergy, experts in the community on specific topics, teachers, etc.) and Wednesday night Hebrew
Third Wednesday of the Month
Have community member or lay leader lead an activity with the students and Wednesday night Hebrew. Some possible activities:
Jewish Martial Arts/Krav Maga lesson
Fourth Wednesday of the Month
Field Trip to sites in the Jewish Community/Community Building Social Activity somewhere in Des Moines
20-minute session with program director during the Hebrew school day
30 minutes of conversational Hebrew lessons at noon
Other Aspects of the Program
To encourage increased community involvement, create a point system of rewards for every involvement the student does. For example, 100 points potential choices are:
Participate in services
Extra community service at a Jewish organization
Participation in youth group activity at synagogue
Attendance at Wednesday night class
Participation in two Hebrew classes
Taking a trip to a Jewish place or activity (like a Bar Mitzvah or wedding)
Provide rewards once students complete they get different rewards
Overnights to Jewish communities in Omaha, Kansas City, and Minneapolis
Trips to Los Angeles, Chicago, New York and Washington, DC (different in different years) for those who attend at least 70% of Wednesday classes
High school students are invited to join our Madrichim program and Student to Student (STS) program. As a Senior Madrich, your teen will become a student mentor and develop leadership skills for their next step into young adulthood. STS offers the opportunity to increase cultural awareness about Judaism in the larger community.