Our warm and individualized approach to learning continues in Junior High School while the rigor and standards increase. Housed on its own floor, the Junior High School is integrated into the larger Yeshiva Har Torah community while also maintaining its own distinct, age-appropriate traditions and experiences. We encourage an atmosphere that fosters cooperation, individual excellence, a thirst for knowledge, and a love for Torat Yisrael, Am Yisrael, and Medinat Yisrael.
Our Junior High School day begins with meaningful and spirited tefilah, for 5th and 6th graders in their classrooms and for 7th and 8th graders together in a minyan in our Beit Midrash. Beginning in 5th grade, all students engage in sophisticated and rigorous Jewish Studies in separate gender classes. All students are introduced to increasingly sophisticated original texts in Chumash, Navi, Mishna, Dinim, Gemara, Ivrit, and Modern Jewish History. Jewish Studies are taught Ivrit B’Ivrit. We strive to facilitate our students' continued growth as confident and independent learners based on the strong foundation that our students receive in the elementary grades.
Our General Studies program continues to offer students the opportunity to grow through a challenging, coeducational, departmentalized course of study that includes language arts, social studies, science, math, and computer science. Significant effort and resources have been devoted to developing a General Studies curriculum that incorporates current research and best practices. The curriculum integrates elements of programs including the Teachers’ College Reading and Writing Project, Georgia Math, and Math in Focus. Our state-of-the-art science lab provides for hands-on learning and exploration.
The general philosophy of the school is to create heterogeneous classes, using differentiated instruction to ensure that all students are engaged in meaningful learning. However, we do group our students homogeneously for certain subjects. For exceptionally talented math students, we offer a math enrichment program through 6th grade. An accelerated math track in 7th and 8th grade prepares students to take the 9th grade New York State Regents examination. In Jewish Studies, we group our students on a continuum of Ivrit levels from basic to advanced. Enrichment teachers and learning specialists work with appropriate groups of students. In 7th and 8th grade, boys are placed in Gemara shiurim according to skill level and girls have the option of continuing to study advanced Gemara or participating in an enriched Chumash/Parshanut HaMikra program.
The Dr. Payman Rabiei Elective Program allows our students’ individual talents and interests to be recognized and nurtured with elective activities like studio art, computer programming, chess, woodworking, robotics, French, and investing. Students also have the opportunity to participate in mishmar, the Names Not Numbers Holocaust project, Math Olympiad contests, color war, Bar and Bat Mitzvah workshops, Science Fair, Invention Convention, spelling bee, and shabbatonim. Students are involved in various tzedakah and chesed projects such as monthly visits with the senior citizens at a local nursing home, the annual Yachad shabbaton, and Pesach food and Chanukah toy drives. Our students learn outside the classroom through day and overnight trips to religious, cultural, and historical sites, including those in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, and the Greenkill Environmental Center. In addition to our physical education program, students also have an array of after-school activities to choose from, including varsity and junior varsity hockey and basketball teams.
Beyond teaching specific subjects, teachers seek to develop skills in critical thinking, writing, speaking, reading, listening, organization, and time management. Our goal is to graduate students who can think critically and originally about complex issues and ideas. Moreover, our rebbeim, morot, and teachers seek to develop meaningful relationships with their students and serve as role models who inspire students to appreciate the beauty of learning and living Torah.
When the times comes to consider the next step, all students benefit from individualized high school guidance. We are not affiliated with a high school or community. Our graduates are sought after and have the opportunity to attend the yeshiva high schools of their choice. Many of our graduates go on to study in yeshivot and seminaries in Israel after high school and on to elite universities. Our graduates are our best publicity!