Sunday school meets three times a month from 9:30 a.m. - 12:00 noon during the school year. Classes are taught Pre-K through 8th grade, including Bar and Bat Mitzvah preparation.

Kids learn about Jewish traditions, major festivals, and biblical heritage from a social and cultural perspective. At all levels, children join the adults for singing in Hebrew, Yiddish, Ladino and English.

Year-by-Year Content Themes

(Use fall to determine if it is an odd or even year)
Grade Theme
preK-K Jewish Life of Our Community: Holidays and their symbols, mitzvot, and secular humanistic Jewish ethics and values such as love of learning, ethical action, Tzedakah, social justice, respect for life, friendship, personal responsibility for our actions and consequences.
1st/2nd
even years
Our Celebrations: Jewish holidays and their origins; how they are celebrated in our homes, our community, other Jewish communities, and in the world; relevant music, food, art and dance; links to non-Jewish observances like Thanksgiving and Solstice; life cycle events such as birth, B’nai Mitzvah, marriage, death
1st/2nd
odd years
Jewish Lives: Defining our values as secular Jews, doing the right thing, having a positive impact on the world, expressing our values through action, and learning about some famous people who exemplify this theme; also how Jews around the world celebrate holidays.
3rd/4th
even years
Our Stories: Historical context of the Bible, Bible stories in the secular context and as a way to teach values, cultural practices, and our history, history of ancient Israel
3rd/4th
odd years
Our History: History of the Jews and Judaism, culture in ancient times, issues of class, discrimination and resilience, social justice, intellectual tradition, early Diaspora and Jewish life in various countries, shetl life
5th/6th
even years
Jews in the U.S.: Different phases of immigration to the U.S., Jews in early U.S., involvement in social movements (labor movement, civil rights), American Jewish experience and culture, assimilation, class issues, branches of Judaism, Jews in Chicago, Jewish literature focused on the U.S. , and the history of secular Jews in the U.S.
5th/6th
odd years
Jews in the Larger World: Diaspora continued, the Holocaust, establishment of modern state of Israel, Kibbutz movement, history of the Middle East conflict, our tradition of critical analysis and questioning, discrimination and resilience in the recent past and present, identifying and fighting prejudice, literature focused on the Holocaust or Jews in other countries
B’nai Mitzvah Becoming B’nai Mitzvah: In addition to preparing the students for the B’nai Mitzvah celebration, which includes an exploration of their family history, a social action project, interviews with significant adults in their life, Bible study, and the opportunity to express their individual beliefs and values at the ceremony, some time is spent trying to understand the history, the culture, the significance, and the meaning of secular Judaism.

Categories That Cross All Grades/Years

Each class is encouraged to complete a service or social action project that is tied to the topic of that year, and that the students help to select. Each class (excluding preK-K) is encouraged to have a field trip which is relevant to the content they are studying. Examples are a trip to a museum, social service agency, or nature facility.

In addition, there are threads that are woven through all of the grades in different ways. The threads include how secular Jews celebrate Jewish holidays, and Jewish culture (e.g., music, food, dance and humor).

Please email info@secularjewish.org with any questions about Sunday School or registration.

Teacher's Corner