Our curriculum acknowledges that not only are our students part of the Beth Chaim community, but as Jews they are an essential part of  a much greater community.  Thus, when they learn to read and chant in Hebrew, they are spiritually, historically and culturally connected to Jews in Israel and all over the world who are reading and chanting the same prayers. By learning Hebrew, the students can feel a connection to all Jews, while honoring the memory of their ancestors. 

Each grade is centered on a particular theme, as well as a Jewish value. The classes are thought-provoking, focused on essentials of Jewish life and give each child a sense of their place within the many facets of Judaism. Our classrooms are joy-filled, interactive and creative!

Keep scrolling down to view our Curriculum and our teachers' bios.

 

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 Click on the Curriculum above to download and print.

About Our Teachers

Grace Munoz – Education Director.
Grace has been a teacher and her family have been members at Beth Chaim for 15 years. Her children (ages 17 and 20)  attended the Beit Midrash from Kindergarten through their B’nei Mitzvahs, and remain involved in their Jewish community. Grace studied at Tel Aviv University during college.  Prior to teaching at Beth Chaim, she practiced special education and disability civil rights law.  Grace is looking forward to her second year as Education Director.

Gabi Lazar – Torah Tots.
Gabi was born and raised in Jerusalem. The daughter of a Rabbi, she grew up with a passion for Jewish tradition. After serving in the Israeli Defense Forces, Gabi moved to San Francisco and has worked in Jewish Education for the past 15 years as a teacher for all ages from preschool to high school.  She is a proud mother of two boys who are 1 and 3 years old.
Laura Wilson – Gan Katan (Kindergarten)
Laura brings over 20 years of youth leadership experience to Beth Chaim’s Kindergarten program. This will be her fourth year engaging our youngest students in enriching activities focusing on Jewish holidays, celebrations and traditions in a fun and loving learning environment.  Laura volunteers for Girl Scouts, focusing on community service projects and craft workshops. Laura loves nature, having worked and lived in Yosemite and Yellowstone National Parks.
Lara Groch – Kitah Alef (1st grade)
Lara has worked in the educational field for over twenty years, with students ranging from preschool age to teens.  She took a transformative trip to Israel with Birthright and loves to visit family there.  Lara brings energy, creativity and musical ability to our Beit Midrash.  She has three children, ages 1, 3 and 9.
Kathleen Rubinfeld – Kitah Bet (2nd grade)
Kathleen is in her 13th year teaching at the Beit Midrash.  Her two (now adult children) became B’nei Mitzvahs at Beth Chaim. She loves spending time with her two grandsons!  Kathleen enjoys working and playing with the younger members of the Beit Midrash– their openness, enthusiasm and energy spur her on to learn more about Judaism herself year after year.
Zvia Bitansky – Kitah Gimmel (3rd grade)
Zvia Bitansky was born and raised in Israel, moving to the United States 38 years ago.  She has taught Hebrew to adults as well as pre-school and school-age children.  Zvia has been a teacher at the Tree of Life Preschool for many years. She loves introducing the students to the land of Israel, Hebrew language, Jewish art and watching her students gain knowledge through experience as she encourages their curiosity.
Alice Tankel – Kitah Daled (4th grade)
Alice was born in Romania and moved to Israel as a young girl.  She taught middle school science and earned an MBA before moving to the United States 12 years ago.  Alice has two children who are 17 and 18 years old.  She is beginning her 4th year at Beth Chaim and enjoys teaching about Hebrew and Israeli culture.
Jeff Reitzes – Kitah Hey (5th grade), Sundays
Jeff has been a member of Beth Chaim for over 20 years, and this will be his third year teaching at the Beit Midrash.  Jeff has been a trope mentor for many students, including his own children who are now 17 and 21 years old.  He sings with the Chazzanut group at the High Holiday services.  Jeff is currently the Education chairperson on the Board of Directors.  He looks forward to co-teaching 5th grade this year with his daughter Samantha.
Samantha Reitzes – Kitah Hey (5th grade), Sundays
Samantha grew up at Beth Chaim, attending 9 years of religious school, having her Bat Mitzvah and working as a Madricha.  She has worked with kids at Camp Newman and is a leader in NFTY, the reform Jewish youth movement.  This will be her first year teaching at Beth Chaim and she looks forward to co-teaching with her father Jeff.
Lori Troyanovsky – Kitah Hey (5th grade), Hebrew Power Hour
This will be Lori’s third year teaching 5th grade Hebrew at Beth Chaim.  Her Hebrew study began when she volunteered in the Israeli Army, and continued when she spent her senior year studying at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She loves working with youth and spent many years working as a social worker with at-risk teens and their families.  Lori has three children ages 9, 12, and 14.
Samantha Hanlon – Kitah Vav (6th grade) Hebrew Power Hour and B’nei Mitzvah trope mentor
Sam has been a member of Beth Chaim for her whole life, going through Sunday school and Hebrew school from kindergarten to 7th grade, Bat Mitzvah and becoming a Madricha.  Sam has been teaching at Beth Chaim for 8 years and also works from home as a college counselor for a nursing school in Utah.  Her passion is teaching students their Torah portions and being a trope mentor.  Sam has a 3 year old daughter and infant son.
Ally Ferber – Kitah Vav (6th grade) Sundays
Ally has been a member of Beth Chaim her whole life and went through the Sunday school and Hebrew school program. She had her Bat Mitzvah at Beth Chaim and became a Madricha immediately following until she completed high school. She graduated from Sonoma State with a Bachelors and teaching degree and began her passion of teaching in Kindergarten. She now is entering her third year of teaching fifth grade at a private school.
Ellen Severson – Jew Crew (7th grade)
Ellen has been a member of Beth Chaim for 12 years and this will be her 4th year teaching 7th grade.  She believes that hands-on learning is the best teaching model for understanding what Jewish values are all about.  Ellen earned an MBA years ago and then worked in the financial world in San Francisco. She loves to hike and has been to Israel twice.