Joel and Helen Jacobs Religious School of Temple B’nai Or

Our Mission

At the Joel & Helen Jacobs Religious School of Temple B’nai Or,
we nurture the development of children into young adults
who love and celebrate being Jewish Americans.

Confirmation class at National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia


Our goal is for your child to develop a love of being Jewish in community with other children, their teachers, and all our families. We foster acceptance and belongingness among all members of our learning community and truly delight in the joy and fun of worshiping and celebrating Jewish life together. We are committed to accommodating the individual needs of our families.

Our clergy, education leaders, and teachers take responsibility for and invest in students’ growth as whole Jewish people from childhood to early adulthood. Jewish learning begins at Kindergarten and continues through ORIM as seniors in High School. You can learn more about your child’s Jewish journey below.

Nurture your child’s Jewish journey (Kindergarten to Grade 2)

In Kindergarten through Grade 2, our goal and hope are that your child, and your entire family, feel nurtured and completely at home at Temple. In our Education Overview, you can learn more about Kindergarten, Grade 1, and Grade 2. Young children especially enjoy Mishpacha T’filah (Family Prayer), a music-infused service for all our families that opens Temple school every Sunday morning. Young children learn quickly through Jewish music, which is emphasized throughout all grades.

Open the gate to your child’s Jewish journey (Grades 3 to 5)

In Grades 3 to 5, students Jewish knowledge grows through study of Torah, Israel, Culture and Values. Personalized Hebrew learning begins in 3rd grade and is designed to make learning Hebrew effective, efficient and fun. Students are tutored one-on-one over Skype or in small groups of one teacher and up to six students at Temple. In our Education Overview, you can learn more about Grade 3, Grade 4, and Grade 5.

Celebrate your child’s Jewish journey (Grades 6 to 8)

The 6th grade focuses on the understanding of Mitzvah, Jewish life cycle, and their unique life experience as Jews. We study our own Jewish family heritage and learn about the importance of keeping Judaism alive in the future. Since most students become B’nai Mitzvah during 7th grade, the study of Hebrew and Torah shifts from groups to individuals with a tutor. Our goal for 7th grade is to integrate students seamlessly into the high school program. Weekly dinners, numerous trips, and an informal grade-wide educational setting encourage students to stay connected to Judaism and Jewish life and to continue their Jewish studies.

In 8th grade, after many students have become B’nai Mitzvah, students take time to reflect on their emerging adult identities and their feelings of being Jewish and are invited into a larger conversation about how being Jewish impacts them. In our Education Overview, you can learn more about Grade 6, Grade 7, and Grade 8.

Support your teen’s journey to Jewish adulthood (Grades 9 to 12)

We are your partners in helping your teens navigate adolescence and become young adults who love being Jewish Americans. We provide opportunities for learning and meaningful relationships with trusted Jewish adults and peers who strengthen your children’s Jewish identities, develop their sense of belonging to the Jewish people, and help them find purpose and meaning in their young lives.

Our school is a safe haven where it’s cool to be Jewish. Your teens can speak openly about their developing Jewish identities and express their love for and concerns about their Jewish lives. They meet Jewish teens from other towns and develop lasting friendships. Our programs help teens to explore aspects of adulthood like identity, relationships, citizenship and social issues, and to address challenges like bullying and anti-Semitism – all through a Jewish lens.  In our Education Overview, you can learn more about Grade 9, Grade 10 – Confirmation, and Grades 11 & 12 – Orim.