Pre-K to Grade 2


Ganon students will be introduced to the Jewish holidays as they occur throughout the Jewish calendar.  The curriculum will be taught through informal stories, games, crafts, cooking, dancing and music.

Learn about Jewish holidays

  • Fall holidays: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot  & Simchat torah
  • Shabbat  – Introductory Bible Stories:  Adam & Eve; Noah; Abraham; Moses
  • Chanukah
  •  Tu b’Shevat
  • Purim
  • Pesach/Passover

 Children will learn about Jewish symbols and prayers

  • First line of Shema [said in all services and at bedtime]
  • Blessings for Shabbat: wine, candles, motzi
  • Children will learn simple Hebrew words: abba, eema, rosh, yad
  • Children will learn simple Hebrew songs such as Bim-bam; Zum Gali Gali; David Melech Yisrael, Hinei Ma Tov and other holiday songs: I had a Little Dreidl; Dayenu, etc.

Children will learn about the concept of mitzvoth and tzedakah



Gan students will be introduced to the Aleph-Bet and simple vocabulary associated with prayers.  Children in Gan will study Bible stories and holidays as they occur throughout the year.  The curriculum will be accomplished through informal stories, games, crafts, cooking, dancing and music.

Learn some letters of the Aleph-Bet       

Review/Learn Beginning prayers taught in Ganon: 1st line of Shema; Shabbat blessings

Children will become familiar with the Torah as both an object and as a source for most things Jewish

Study & learn important Bible stories

Children will learn about the concepts of mitzvoth and Tzedakah; learn about mitzvah as doing things that help others or make others happy

Temple – become familiar with building; walk around, stop and have the students find something Jewish: magen davids, mezzuzot, Hebrew letters on bimah; Ark; books; know location of sanctuary; Rabbi’s office; Educator’s office; Library; Social Hall; gift shop; bathrooms; water fountain, exits, etc.

Reinforce importance of Shabbat and how to celebrate at home through use of “Shabbat Bear.”

Students and parents are encouraged to attend Family/Tot Shabbat to learn blessings and customs of Shabbat


Kitah Aleph students will begin to learn simple Hebrew prayers and study the Aleph-Bet.  Holidays will be looked at in greater depth.  Students will use Hebrew book to learn letters.  In addition, the curriculum will be augmented by stories, games, crafts, cooking, dancing and music.

Begin the study of Hebrew language and prayers

  • Students will learn the Aleph-Bet: names of letters and their sounds
  • Students will review and/or learn blessings taught in Ganon & Gan, first line of Shema and blessings for Shabbat
    • Students will learn to say or chant the Four Questions
    • Begin to understand prayer as ‘praise’ and prayer as thanks’
    • Children will learn simple Hebrew words such as todah, slicha, b’vakasha

Students will learn about the festivals of the year, their customs and language.

  • Study will include: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Simchat Torah, Chanukah, Purim, Passover and Shavuot
  • Yom Ha’Atzmaut: to recognizeIsraelas the Jewish homeland and to celebrate with our people their holiday of independence

Study & learn important Bible stories; review some stories learned in Gan, but go into deeper details

Class Consecration ceremony of welcoming new students as being part of the Jewish people.


Emphasis for Bet students is beginning to read Hebrew and review their past Hebrew skills.  In conjunction with deepening their understanding of prayer, they will begin to discover who God is to each one of them and the role of the synagogue as a place of worship, study and meeting. 

To begin to understand how God fits into our Jewish lives

  • As the class studies Hebrew prayers, they will discuss thanking God for food, the rainbow, families, etc.
  • As the class discusses mezuzah, they will discuss that mezuzah reminds us of God
  •   Ways in which to bring God and Jewish ritual into the home
  •    Family Education workshop involves making ‘Torah Pillow’ with the Shema

      on it and making bedtime Jewish through rituals, Jewish stories, etc.

  • .  Learning the 10 Commandments

To strengthen previous learned Hebrew skills

  • Introduce Barechu blessing
  • Teach blessings over holiday candles […shel Yom Tov]
  • Teach the 3 blessings over Chanukah candles
  • Students will learn to write their names in Hebrew
  • Children will increase their vocabulary of simple Hebrew words to include body parts, numbers, colors, bayit, shulchan, kisay, etc.

Begin the study of Jewish life

Temple, life cycle, Torah and how it is written; symbols, Israel, community and more.  Why the ner tamid never goes out; what is inside a mezuzah?

                Be a mitzvah!  Learn how to self-generate Jewish actions.  Discuss the variety of mitzvot; things we do to thank God and things we do to help other people

Have a mitzvah tree on the wall—review each Sunday—students fill out a leaf with the mitzvah they did during the week; parents can help by sending in a ‘mitzvah card’ of something special their child did.  At the end of the year or twice a year, remove the leaves and send home all the mitzvot the child performed.

Study & learn important Bible stories; review some stories 



placeholder femaleRebecca Slonim – Gan, Kindergarten

Rebecca Slonim grew up as a Reconstructionist Jew in the Buffalo Jewish Community. She teaches Kindergarten this year, and it is her first year teaching at Temple Sinai. In her free time, Rebecca likes to run and draw. Her favorite part about teaching here is interacting with the students and being able to teach them the Hebrew language.



Saragail Benjamin

Saragail Benjamin – Kitah Aleph/Bet, 1st & 2nd Grade, Music, and Mishpacha

Saragail was raised in Omaha, NE in a Conservative congregation and now makes her home in Winooski, VT. This is her second year teaching at Temple Sinai. This year Saragail is teaching First Grade, Music, and Mishpacha – a Family Education Program for parents and students in grades K-2. In her free time, she loves to make music, write, and spend time outdoors with her family. What she loves most about teaching here are the wonderful students and the warm, embracing Temple Sinai community.