Whether its singing at Chagigot (Holiday Celebrations), t'fillot (communal prayer) in the morning, the Middle School Klezmer band learning a new song, or the Lower School engineering apple and honey dippers, the Jewish Calendar informs everything that we experience at JCDS.
Our chaggim curriculum reflects our mission by providing students with core Hebrew and Jewish knowledge about the holidays, while creating joyous experiences and a sense of community through shared experiences. The chaggim are also opportunities to showcase and experience the diversity of traditions and observances present within our pluralistic student body. The Jewish calendar is a vehicle that brings JCDS together as a community and allows for innovative and multidisciplinary cross-grade programming around Jewish themes and values.
Jewish Life at JCDS extends to the everyday as well. Jewish values are taught in all subjects, from derekh eretz (respect) in gym class, to building Sefirat Haomer counters in engineering, to playing Jewish songs on the cigar box guitars that were made in electives. Our community is founded on shared Jewish experience and the implementation of Jewish values.
T'fillah (prayer) is integral to JCDS' pluralistic education and is one of the ways we provide a common grounding in Jewish practice and values. It expresses our core identity as a living, thriving Jewish community. With a joyful mix of song and contemplation that evolves as our students age, the goal of t'fillah is to foster community and to allow us to reach within and beyond ourselves. In the Lower School, students experience t'fillah every day in their classrooms, facilitated by their teachers along with guidance from the Jewish Life Team.
"There was a passion and enthusiasm for secular and Judaic learning on the part of the staff, parents, and children. It wasn't until the first day of school, however, that we could experience the fact that we had made the right choice by choosing JCDS. We spent the morning in our son's class, and then went together to an assembly, with singing, and enthusiastic welcome, and a D'var Torah. It felt really great to see so many warm, happy parents from many different walks of life entrusting their children to the school."– Abe & Marion Menzin, JCDS Parents