Here at Temple Beth Israel, we love learning! From teaching our smallest children Hebrew songs and rhymes, to proudly sending our students off to college, we believe a strong Jewish education is the key to living a joyful and ethical life.
PRESCHOOL – 8TH GRADE
In conjunction with Agudath Achim Congregation and the Greater Altoona Jewish Federation, children in preschool through 8th grade attend a weekly “Sunday School” on each Sunday of the academic year. Agudath Achim Congregation and Temple Beth Israel each host classes for a semester. The school also hosts a Purim Carnival, a Passover Seder, a Hanukkah party and other programs and activities related to the Jewish holiday calendar. Parents, the congregations, and the Federation share the overall cost of operation.
Beginning in Second Grade, our students begin learning the fundamentals of Hebrew, and begin their journey to become B’nei Mitzvah. A few times throughout the year the students are asked to lead parts of the Shabbat evening services. This helps to familiarize and prepare our students with our liturgy from an early age.
As our Hebrew students approach their Bar or Bat Mitzvah, individual tutelage is emphasized to prepare each student to be called up to the Torah for the first time.
During the years between a student’s Bar or Bat Mitzah and the end of their 10th Grade year, students will be given additional instruction to prepare them as they journey into adulthood. Confirmation is a ceremony cementing the students’ Jewish identities as they are nearing adulthood. Once confirmed, our students will have completed their formal Jewish Education as a Temple member.
Our Jewish learning continues into adulthood, with monthly “Torah Talks” on Saturday mornings. We also sponsor workshops throughout the year such as a hands-on “Shofar-aton” around the High Holidays.
CURRENT CHAVUROT (STUDY GROUPS)
Adult Tanakh Study: Apocalyptic literature of the Intertestamental Period
We explore the genre of apocalyptic literature that picks up from Daniel and reflects the situation about 2,000 years ago in the land of Israel and a profound belief by many that the Messianic Age and perhaps the End of Time as we know it was approaching soon. Zoom Only. Please contact office for link.
Introduction to Jewish Mysticism
Using Arthur Kurzweil’s Kabbalah for Dummies and additional primary and secondary sources, we explore the mystical traditions of Judaism going back to the Bible itself. All texts are presented in English. Zoom Only. Please contact office for link.
Please check our calendar for actual schedules and remote study links.
Temple Beth Israel assists the Greater Altoona Jewish Federation in community involvement in furthering Jewish education. We bring in many guest speakers throughout the year as well as enjoy a Jewish Film Festival each Spring. Rabbi Audrey Korotkin is also a constant in the community as a guest speaker on Judaism and Jewish ethics.