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Romemu Overview

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Romemu: Our Youth Educational Program 

Kesher (Connect)   Chavayah (Experience)    Lomed (Learn)    Chai (Live)

 
What makes Romemu unique? 
 
We are breaking away from the conventional model of religious school/Sunday school/Hebrew school. Our program is learner centered. Our learners will be empowered, actively engaged, innovative, have ownership, and take on leadership. Our teachers will be learning guides, facilitators of conversations and research, creators of community, and scaffolders of creativity and reflection.  Our learners explore how Judaism is relevant to their lives today and how it can help guide their futures.  We are focused on each individual as a whole person emotionally, socially, intellectually, physically, and spiritually. We believe all spaces are learning spaces and we provide multi-access learning.  
 
Why the name Romemu?
 
Romemu is Hebrew for Exalt and Go Higher. We are aiming to go higher in our educational experience, so that our learners may Kesher (Connect), Chavayah (Experience), Lomed (Learn), and Chai (Live). We are encouraging our youth to go higher to be their most compassionate and authentic selves to themselves and to others so they can make a positive difference in the world today.  
 
What is the Judaic curriculum for Romemu? 

Our Judaic curriculum will provide our learners in each grade with key foundational Jewish cultural literacy in the following areas: Torah/sacred text, God, lifecycle, Israel, holidays, middot (Jewish values), mitzvot, and where age appropriate Jewish history.

Nel Nodding, an education philosophy professor emerita at Stanford, states that the purpose of education is to expand our circles of caring.  Our curriculum design will be based on this philosophy.  It will also be based on Ron Wolfson's Relational Judaism and that one of the purposes of Jewish education is to grow each individual's relationships with Judaism in one or more of these ways: connection to self, to family, to friends, to Jewish expression, to community, to Jewish peoplehood, to Israel, to the world and to God.  Therefore our curriculum is designed to engage our learners in expanding circles of caring:
k4:  My Jewish Self: An Exploration of How I Can Live Jewishly
K5: Me and My Family: how can my family celebrate Judaism? What does Judaism teach me about being in a family? What does it mean to be a part of the Jewish family?
1st: Me and My Friends: What does Judaism mean by acquire yourself a friend, how can I best interact with others? 
2nd: Me and My Synagogue: What does it mean to be part of a synagogue? 
3rd:  Me and My Jewish Community 
4th: Me and Amcha (The Jewish People): What are the Jewish People? What does it mean to be part of the Jewish People? And what does it mean to be responsible to the Jewish People? 
5th: Me and Israel: exploring my relationship with Israel from 8 different faces of Israel.
6th grade: Hineini: Part 1, Where do I fit in the chain of Judaism?
7th grade: Hineini: Part 2, I am Ready to Take My Place in the World as a b'nai mitzvah

As we have combined grades in one class, this year K4/K5/1 will be exploring Me and My Family. 3/4 will be exploring Me and Amcha. 5/6 will be exploring Me and Israel. The following year K4/K5/1 will be exploring My Jewish Self;
3/4 will be exploring Me and My Synagogue; and 5/6 will be exploring Hineini, Part 1. 

When Romemu begins this year, parents will receive the enduring understanding, essential questions, and evidence of understandings for their child’s grade. They will also receive a grid of which foundational cultural literacy concepts will be taught in their child's grade. 

Field trips will be an integrated part of our curriculum. 

Chugim (electives) – Four times this year, each individual in grades 2-7, and the class for K4-1st grade, will choose a chug allowing for choice and authentic Jewish content in a way that is relevant and meaningful to them. These chugim may include: animation, games, folklore, and amanut (art). This year all of our chugim will be based around our Lifelong Learning theme for the year L'dor Vador, from generation to generation. 

What are the various components of our Hebrew program in Romemu?

To learn about our overall Hebrew and Tefillah goals, please click here

T’nuah (Movement) - Each Sunday our T’nuah specialist will visit each Yachad group (K4-6th grade) via Zoom for ten minutes of Hebrew through Movement. (During this time our Yachad teacher/learning guide will still be in the room with our learners.)   Hebrew through Movement is a language acquisition strategy (Total Physical Response) in which learners start to get used to the sounds of Hebrew and begin to comprehend Hebrew by hearing and responding to Hebrew directions. ​​​​

Tefillah (prayer service) – For a part of each day, learners will join the clergy and our Director of Lifelong Learning for a genuine prayer experience because tefillah is learned by doing. Our k4-2nd graders tefillah experience is through song, movement, and meditation. Our 3rd - seventh graders use a tefillah binder with pages from the Reform Movement's Mishkan Tefillah and pages for their own creations. Together we will experience the morning service on Sundays and the afternoon or evening service on Wednesdays, depending on the time of the year. We will also have a question of the day focused on the prayer of the month that the learners will discuss in chevruta, with a partner, and then with the entire group. 

Jewish Life Vocabulary (JLV) is a collection of Hebrew words or phrases that increases one’s connections to Jewish people, traditions, culture and life. You probably use many of these words without thinking about them, such as mazal tov and siddur. We have formalized our JLV curriculum, intentionally choosing which words to focus on in each grade, in tefillah, etc. 

On Wednesdays, our third - sixth graders attend Romemu for Hebrew instruction

Our schedules on Wednesdays in person or on Zoom is the following:
4:30 - 4:45 B'yachad
4:50 - 5:25 Hebrew rotation aleph
5:30 - 5:50 Tefillah 
5:55 - 6:30 Hebrew rotation bet 

B'yachad (Hebrew for together) is our time when our learners will be together in small mixed age groups. They will have time to switch from the outside world to the sacred space of the synagogue. They will do some group building activities based around the theme for tefillah that day. Then they will each get their individual assignments for the day, including learning where they will be going and in what order. 

Everyone will have two rotations. One rotation will be to our Hebrew decoding room where learners will work on bringing sounds from print of letters and vowels or full prayers depending on their level. The other rotation will be to work on understanding the meaning of the prayer and/or doing kinesthetic activities to further help on developing their sound from print skills. 
 
If I want to learn even more about the purpose and values of Romemu and all of our lifelong learning at CEEBJ, where can I go? 
 
Thanks for asking. Please click here for our Purpose and Values Statement.
 
What are the days and times of Romemu?
 
Sundays:       9:30 - 11:30 am 

Wednesdays:   4:30 - 6:30 pm 

8th - 9th Grades:

Our program for the eighth and ninth grade has expanded this year. Eighth and Ninth graders this year will have the option to: 

A. Participate in Ofakim (the eighth and ninth grade class) only.

In addition to Ofakim (which means Horizon), 8th and 9th graders are invited to: 

B. Be part of the madrichim program. 

What will we be choosing if we choose Ofakim

  • Once a week (for an hour and a half) eighth and ninth graders will gather together to deepen their Jewish knowledge, spirituality and social connection to their peers.
  • They will begin the year by exploring a variety of topics and choose a topic together. 
  • This year our Lifelong Learning theme is
    • "L'dor Vador" (From Generation to Generation
    • This year they will pick three topics based on this theme to explore in trimester units. 
  • This program has a built in social component and we will be offering social time depending on the week's lesson and the needs of the learners. 
  • This class will take place at CEEBJ. We have the ability to make it multi-access (hybrid) if someone chooses to take it online for any reason for the year or for any one class session. 

What will we be choosing if we choose the madrichim program in addition to Ofakim?

By choosing the madrichim program our eighth and ninth graders are choosing to: 

  • 1. Madrichim (teacher assistants) working with a specific age group on Sundays, with our T'nuah (Hebrew through Movement) program on Sundays, working with our one-on-one Hebrew program on Wednesdays, working with our library either/both days, or with our Lifelong Learning Office either/both days.
  • Madrichim may choose to work on Sundays and/or Wednesdays. Madrichim serve as important role models and provide invaluable assistance to our faculty. In addition, it gives our teens the opportunity to serve the congregation and to continue close ties with Romemu.
  • Please note, all madrichim must be vaccinated to participate in this program as this will be in person at CEEBJ. If you want to participate online only, please contact Susan at scosden@ceebj.org or 973-917-9294 so we can arrange something for you. 
  • Madrichim schedule options (one or both!) 

           Sunday madrichim would be working: 9:10 - 11:30 am 

           Wednesday madrichim would be working: 4:10 - 6:30 pm 

  • 2. All madrichim are expected to continue their own formal Jewish education both so they can continue to learn as a Jew and to role model for the younger learners. Therefore, all eighth and ninth grade madrichim are expected to register and participate in Ofakim. All tenth graders are expected to register and participate in Kabbalat Torah. 
  • 3. Five times a year madrichim will participate in madrichim training sessions. Our 8th and 9th graders will gain leadership skills as they learn what it means to be a role model for children. 

Kabbalat Torah: 10th grade:

  • Kabbalat Torah means “receiving Torah.”
  • Our tenth graders meet weekly with Rabbi Berkson to discuss philosophy, current events, Jewish values, and prepare to lead our annual Kabbalat Torah service on Shavuot in which they take responsibility and ownership over their own religious practice in a more mature way. 

Passport To Israel

Attention parents: Consider this amazing program that matches your savings with contributions from CEEBJ and Milwaukee Jewish Federation to enable kids to go on a peer-group Israel trip as teens or young adults.

 

Special needs? We’d love to help!

At Congregation Emanu-El B’ne Jeshurun, we believe that every person is created B'tzelem Elohim, (in the image of God) and therefore each person is unique. Therefore, we are committed to accommodating the learning needs of every person in our educational programs. Our teachers receive training and assistance in adapting lessons for all learning styles. We are excited to be partnering with the Coalition for Jewish Learning of Milwaukee and providing our learners and their families with a Kesher coordinator. The coordinator will help the learner, their family, and the teachers best meet the needs of each learner as well as provide differentiated curriculum. Please contact our Director of Lifelong Learning to discuss your child’s special needs.

Need more information?

For more information, please contact Susan Cosden, Director of Lifelong Learning, at 414-228-7545 or  scosden@ceebj.org.

Mon, October 3 2022 8 Tishrei 5783