The Educational Approach of the Midtown Workmen’s Circle School

Reference: Midtown Workmen's Circle School

Our program for children ages five through thirteen is held on Sundays, from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM.

We approach learning through hands-on, collaborative projects that integrate arts, language, and core themes, with a focus on the Yiddish-speaking culture of Eastern and Central Europe.

In every class, you will find students creating artwork, plays and music; interpreting Jewish texts; celebrating holidays in ways that thoughtfully blend creativity and tradition; and becoming activists with an understanding of how Jewish history and ethics connect to progressive values.

The program culminates in a cultural bar/bas mitzvah in which each graduating student engages in social action and community service work, explores family history, and develops an intellectual project that is presented at the collective ceremony.

Our curriculum draws from the following four principles:

We honor the centrality of text in Jewish life by engaging with classical Jewish sources along with modern literature and political writings, and we respond to these texts in student-driven creative projects.

We value the Jewish tradition of argument, from the ethical disagreements of Talmudic rabbis to the political and economic controversies that have shaped modern life, and we guide students in respectful and effective debate and dialogue.

We celebrate Jewish culture through the rhythms of klezmer music, the resonance of Hebrew songs, and the cycle of Jewish holidays. We learn to speak and read Yiddish, finding meaning in the voices of earlier generations as we create our own Jewish culture for today.

We reclaim the legacy of Jewish activism through engagement with the history of Jewish advocacy for social and economic justice, and in creating projects to improve our world today.