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As a backdrop, Neshamah staff are given formulated curriculum (called the URJ CHAI Curriculum)
designed by expert Jewish educators. This comprehensive curriculum provides the learning
goals and suggestions for content of instruction. Our teachers have been trained to make use
of the themes from this series and adapt them to create highly interactive, child-centred

This curriculum is divided into 3 cycles:
•    Cycle 1: Torah/bible stories
•    Cycle 2: Avodah/Worship - blessings, prayers and Jewish lifecycle
•    Cycle 3: Gemilut Chasadim-  tzedakah, tikun olam, ethics and acts of loving kindness


Our Learning Matrix

Torah            Topic                             Themes                                                                
Genesis         Creation                       Miracle of creation; B’tzelem elolhim, what it means
                                                              to be made in God’s image and the uniqueness of each
                                                              person on earth. We will explore ways in which we relate
                                                              to and ask questions about God.
                        Adam and Eve           Choices and consequences of actions
                        Noah                            Covenant; Preservation of the earth and inhabitants
                        Matriarchs/Patriarchs    Leadership; Community; Sacrifice; Family
                        Jacob/Esau                Peace; Sibling rivalry
                        Joseph                         Feelings and actions affect how we lead; Forgiveness
Exodus          The story of Egypt     Jewish peoplehood; Slavery and modern day oppression;
                                                              Treating people with respect; Being chosen; Finding God;
                                                              Laws and rules
Deuteronomy    The Desert            Nomadic life; Applying the rules; 12 tribes of Israel and
                                                              membership in community; Land of Israel


Avodah            Topic                        Themes                                                                
                            Jewish Lifecycle        How do we make the most out of Jewish time; Jewish
                                                                  time denoted by it own rhythms: the lunar calendar sets
                                                                  its pace, but traditions, customs, ritual and laws as
                                                                  prescribed in sacred texts shape how we understand
                                                                  and undertake their practice.
                             Worship, Blessings  Keva and kavanah, the fixed order of worship
                             and Prayer                and the personal intention we bring to prayer; To thank,
                                                                  praise and extol in Judaism for the abundances in our
                                                                  lives and for the awe of creation.
                             Ritual/Symbols        The identifiers, shapes that shape our lives.
                             Jewish Symbols
                             Shabbat                      Making the ordinary holy; Tying into the theme of Holiness,
                                                                  we will experience how Shabbat can be different things
                                                                  for different people.


Gemilut Chasadim/Ethics                                                                                                        

    Caring for the homeless
    Caring for the environment/do not destroy
    Caring for the elderly
    Caring for animals
    Honouring Parents
    Honouring those who came before you
    Love your neighbour
    Helping others
    Welcoming guests


Concepts: How we behave
    Being slow to anger
    Idle gossip
    Not shaming
    Providing access/ not placing stumbling blocks

Sat, March 24 2018 8 Nisan 5778