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Kitah Keshet

Join Jewish families with young kids for singing, movement, crafts, and stories! 

Register for Kitah Keshet here!

Who: Open to all Jewish families* in the mid-Willamette Valley, this parent/guardian-child class is aimed for kids in the 0-4ish range; older children are welcome too. Kitah Keshet means the Rainbow Class. An important focus of this class is building relationships with other Jewish families in the area.

*Jewish families includes all families with members who are Jewish, Jew-ish, are becoming Jewish (and thus are already included in our Jewish mishpacha - Yiddish for family), etc. Children are welcome to attend alongside a parent, teenage-or-older sibling or cousin, guardian, grandparent, aunt/uncle, caregiver etc.

This class is perfect for your family if you're not sure about engaging Jewishly, or you love everything Jewish and can’t wait to get your kid engaged more Jewishly; if you know a lot about Judaism, or you know nothing about Judaism. Everyone will learn in this class!

Where: At Beit Am!

What: Our families will begin with some singing prayer time (tefilah) led by Rabbi Phil, in the sanctuary, alongside all the older students at Beit Midrash and their families. We’ll then have our own circle with stories, movement, songs, arts and crafts, open play time, and snack (things like string cheese, tangerines, crackers, etc). There will be age appropriate toys out the whole time for kids to play with. 

Each day will follow the same rhythm so children know what to expect. We will repeat songs and motions so kids can learn them. We will incorporate mindful movements and silly movements. We will share with each other our own adult wisdom on topics, and provide fun activities for adults, and babies to preschoolers, to engage with.

Beit Midrash literally means “house of learning” and is the name of the youth education program at Beit Am. Beit Midrash strives to provide a source of Jewish identity and Jewish cultural literacy. The school-wide curriculum this year will focus on Jewish values (derekh eretz). Kitah Keshet may refer to pieces of this but will mostly be too busy singing, dancing and finger painting to talk a lot about “big kid” stuff.  

When: About 3 times a month, Sundays 10am-noon, from mid October through early May. We understand that getting out of the house and navigating naps with young children is hard, so “Late is great!”  Come as often as you want, at the time you can, leave when you need to. We will be happy to see you!

What to bring: Warm clothes for when we’re outside; any other snacks* or comfort items your kiddo might need.

*Beit Am keeps a dairy/vegetarian-style kosher building space - no meat or shellfish is permitted in the building.

Cost: This class is offered on a sliding scale of $54 to $360 for the entire year, 22 classes. The actual cost is about $400/student. Please see below for more on thinking about what to pay.

Beit Midrash staffing, educational supplies, and snacks are made possible through several means of support: Beit Am Membership Dues fund over 70%. Beit Midrash tuition - paid by member families who are able - covers the remaining 30%. We want participation in Kitah Keshet to feel ease-ful for you to join in! So pay what is affordable for your family. Maybe that’s full cost at $360, or maybe that’s covering snacks and materials at $54. 

Beit Am membership is a prerequisite to participation in Beit Midrash, but not Kitah Keshet.

Children who are age-eligble for Beit Midrash are welcome to attend Kitah Keshet with their family. If they are interested in Beit Midrash and the family is not yet a member, they are welcome to visit a class or two to decide if they’d like to be a part of Beit Am and become enrolled in Beit Midrash.

Submit your online payment here!

Teachers

Rachel Chodorow-Reich: Rachel Chodorow-Reich has worked professionally with Jews for over 25 years as a teacher, camp counselor, mentor, ritual leader, and youth group leader. Her undergraduate degree was in education, child development and school reform and she has a teaching credential from a program focused around teaching for equity and social justice. She previously taught high school history and English, as well as a class in nonviolence and social change. Rachel brings 25 years of experience in facilitation, group building, leadership development, personal coaching, leading nature-based, somatic, and Jewish rituals and ceremonies and rites of passage, and supporting healing work and ancestral and personal grief work. She is thrilled to have Brian as our musical leader, bringing something she has long wanted for her own children to the mid-Willamette Valley. Rachel has an almost 4 year old and almost 6.5 year old.

Brian Primack: After exploring careers as a junior high phys ed teacher, composer, cryptographer, and actor, Brian Primack finally settled on academic family medicine. He moved to Corvallis a year ago to become the Dean of the College of Public Health and Human Sciences at OSU. But in his free time, he can think of little more fun or rewarding than working with Jewish babies and toddlers and their families. He's delighted to be joining Rachel for these Kitah Keshet sessions.


For any additional questions, please contact Beit Midrash Director Ellie Larison at beitmidrash@beitam.org or Kitah Keshet teacher Rachel Chodorow-Reich at SacredEarthSacredYou@gmail.com

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