Temple Emanuel of Tempe


Pre-K through Grade 6: Sundays 9:00-11:00 am OR Sundays 10:30 am-12:30 pm
Grades 3 through 6 (In addition to Sundays): Tues. 5:15 pm-6:45 OR Wed. 4:15 pm-6:15 pm
Grade 7 through Post Confirmation: Wed. 6:30-8:00 pm

Class Descriptions:

Pre-K through Grade 2:

“Educate a child in a path that is appropriate for them; They will not swerve from it even in old age.”  - Proverbs 22:6
Tradition tells us that the core of Judaism is to “love your neighbor as yourself.” Teaching this core value is our utmost priority throughout our school and especially for our youngest students. This message of the “golden rule” is palpable throughout the many experiences our youngsters have in class. These experiences include Jewish song, stories, arts and crafts, and an introduction to the Hebrew language both through visual and spoken methods. Through these formative years we hope to cultivate a sense of belonging in each student. We hope that each student feels that they have a special place in their classroom, a special place in our Temple Emanuel community, and a special place amongst the Jewish people worldwide.

Grade 3 through Grade 6:

“The Hebrew language will go from the synagogue to the house of study, and from the house of study it will come into the home and become a living language.” –Eliezer Ben Yehuda
With a deep understanding of respecting others and with a strong sense of belonging, our middle grade students will begin to build upon that solid foundation. Students will begin to learn siddur skills that will prepare them to be full participants in our prayer services. These students will also begin learning Jewish History and Jewish values at age appropriate levels. The Hebrew language, Jewish History, and Jewish values are inextricably linked from the birthplace of Judaism – Eretz Yisrael – The Land of Israel. In these grades, students will begin learning about, and developing a personal relationship with, Israel both as a religious ideal and as a modern state.

B’nei Mitzvah Training:

Students who are 10 months away from their Bar/Bat Mitzvah date, will begin in prayer class which is held on Sundays from 10:30-11:30 am. Once a student has mastered the prayers, they will proceed to training with Emily for their Torah portion and will participate in four individual sessions with Rabbi Dean.

Grade 7 through Grade 9:

"And [the angel] said ‘What is your name?’ He replied ‘Jacob.’ [The angel] said, ‘Your name shall no longer be Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with beings divine and human and have prevailed.’” - Genesis 32:28-29
Our oldest group of students will be ready to wrestle with their tradition in a mature fashion. They will have the privilege of diving deeper into Jewish text, Jewish values, and Jewish traditions than ever before. They will begin to ask the big questions and challenge any preconceived notions that they once had about Judaism. Our students will sometimes encounter problems with no “right” answers. Through this wrestling process, our students will begin charting a path towards having a clear and confident sense of who they are as emerging Jewish adults.

Grades 10 and 11 Confirmation Class:

Rabbi Dean’s curriculum includes meaningful discussions about Judaism and Jewish ethics. Much of the program is determined by the needs and interests of the class. The ultimate goal is for the students to have an enhanced understanding of themselves as individuals and as Jews. The year culminates with the confirmation service in May. There are two separate curricula that Rabbi Dean teaches on a rotating basis, allowing for students to take confirmation in both 10th AND 11th grade without repeating content.

Grades 11 and 12 Giving Circle:

Our 11th and 12th graders will have the opportunity to learn about group work and make a huge impact in our community through our giving circle. Students will raise money and invite non-profit organizations to apply for grants which our Juniors and Seniors will read, evaluate, and ultimately decide who gets the funds. Madrichim Program: A madrich (masculine) or madrichah (feminine) is the Hebrew word for “guide” or “instructor.” Our madrichim do exactly that – guide and instruct - each and every Sunday. They guide and instruct our Religious School students in cooperation with our Religious School teachers to give our students the best experience possible. Being a madrich/ah is a wonderful way to develop leadership and teaching skills. Learning Lab: Learning Lab is a classroom for children whose learning needs are best met in a smaller nurturing environment where they will be able to achieve to the best of their abilities. Learning Lab is available for students on Sunday mornings during the second session. If you think your child requires this type of program, please speak with your child’s teacher and the director. 

For additional questions, to schedule a tour, and/or to have your child attend a class, please contact Rabbi Jason Bonder at 480-838-1414 or by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..