Learning to read Hebrew and chant prayers cannot be done in the two to four hours a week that the students attend Bet Sefer. The only way to ensure that your child learns these skills is to encourage practice at home.
Like with any other skill, daily exposure to Hebrew will reinforce what is taught in religious school. A common comment refers to how the students have no time to practice Hebrew at home, but those students who practice a little at home will be much more successful.
Hebrew reading, comprehension and t’fillah are very much like other skills – some students have a very easy time and others require more practice. Our goal here is that no student slip through the cracks; that every student be successful in all aspects of our learning. To help make that happen, parents can take the following steps:
- Keep an alef bet chart in the car for your child to practice as you schlep to your various activities and errands; play games with the sounds of each letter
- Practice Hebrew reading on the websites listed on the Jewish Learning page
- Practice prayers that are chanted on the links on the Jewish Learning page or from the CDs provided to our Hay and Vav students
- Purchase a copy of your child’s class textbook (for older students) – you can contact Susan Simon to help you – and have your child explain what he/she learned in class that week
- Attend youth and adult services regularly – attending with your child shows your child that this is important to you and not just for them
- Read books with Jewish content in them to your child
- Be sure your child participates in the Summer Literacy Program
- Celebrate Shabbat as a family, reciting the brachot (prayers) for Friday night – invite another family to join you!