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Jewish Studies at Wolfson Hillel

At Wolfson Hillel Jewish Primary School, we recognise that the main purpose of Jewish Studies is to foster within our pupils a love of, and a connection to, Judaism. We endeavour to support each child in developing their own Jewish identity throughout their time at Hillel and support that love of Judaism through both an explicit and implicit Jewish Studies curriculum. The purpose of which is to enhance the level of engagement towards Judaism. Our primary focus is to allow children to develop their Jewish Identity in an environment of respect and inclusion, irrespective of their background, gender, religiosity level and culture.

Jewish Studies is not only concerned with developing the pupils’ knowledge and understanding of each aspect of their Jewish Heritage but also with developing their love for it and commitment to its laws and practices, which include moral and ethical teachings.  It is taught not just as an academic subject, but as a way of life.

Since the Jewish ethos permeates the school, the formal Jewish Studies curriculum is enhanced through daily Tefillah, assemblies, celebrations of festivals and special days. These are all acknowledged also by the secular class teachers in their lessons.

The aims of our curriculum:

  • To make Jewish Studies meaningful and relevant to the pupils through practical experiences and experiential learning
  • To give pupils the skills and knowledge needed to be able to lead a full Jewish life
  • To give pupils the confidence to explore their own personal relationship with Hashem (G-d) and to express it in various ways
  • To develop within the pupil’s exemplary character traits (middot) linked to the development of our Hillel Values which have been devised
  • To instil a sense of community in order to foster a lifelong incentive to be actively involved in Jewish and wider communal life

Implementation: Curriculum Strands

Our schemes of work focus on four main objectives:

  1. Jewish Living (Jewish Way of Life) – what it means to be Jewish. We want our children to discover and grow into their own sense of Jewish identity, explore and experience Judaism and understand the importance of Middot, Mitzvot and Derech Eretz. Above all we want to enable them to make educated Jewish choices.
  2. Jewish Knowledge – the essential skills and knowledge that children need to acquire to become active, participating Jewish children, young people and adults as they go through life:
  • Study Skills: begin to read, translate and understand the relevance of Jewish texts to everyday life in the Diaspora;
  • Prayer Skills: Understanding the concept of prayer, becoming familiar with the basic patterns of brachot and confidence in reading the standard prayers. Developing an understanding of the meaning of key Tefillot.
  • Hebrew Reading Skills: developing fluency and accuracy in reading in order to explore further understanding of Hebrew prayers and a greater ability to read Biblical Hebrew.
  • Hebrew Language Skills: developing a familiarity with the Modern Hebrew language and gaining the skills to speak, listen and read in Ivrit in order to connect with the people and land of Israel.
  • Spiritual Sensitivity:  developing a personal connection with G-d and exploring the spiritual dimension of this relationship; understanding how G-d intervenes in our world;
  • Calendar and Life Cycle Events: developing an awareness of the cycle of the Jewish year and the place of the Chaggim (festivals) in it; learning about the origins of our High Holy Days and festivals and the concepts they symbolise; exploring the significance of the major life cycle events in the life of every Jewish person and the rituals and ceremonies associated with them
  • Israel and the Jewish People: imbuing our children with a positive sense of identification with the Jewish community at home, in Israel and worldwide; an awareness of the concepts of Klal Yisrael and the centrality of Israel to Judaism; fostering personal connections with the State of Israel and its people; Comparative Judaism – learning about the customs, traditions and practices of Ashkenazi, Sephardi and other orthodox communities in Jewish worship;
  1. Jewish Ethics, Values and spirituality Wolfson Hillel is not just a place where children acquire factual information about Judaism. Everyone in our school community is encouraged to act at all times in a manner consistent with Derech Eretz – righteous Jewish behaviour. Our prime objective is to help our children develop the essential Jewish and fundamental British values (Middot) of Kavod (mutual respect for one another), Tzedakah (giving charity), Gemilut Chasadim (doing practical good deeds) and Tikkun Olam (conserving the environment which G-d has created for us). Our purpose is to educate our young people to have throughout their lives a sense of positive responsibility for their own actions and an active concern for their fellow human beings in the immediate community and the world at large
  2. Torah- Facilitating children engaging with the Torah as a living text.
  • Parasha (N-6): Children are introduced to the weekly Torah Portion. The story line is taught on a spiral curriculum and brings in elements of well-being as focus.
  • Chumash (2-6): Children begin to independently navigate through the chumash and develop skills to enable them to derive meaning from the texts and learn life lessons through the experiences of our forefathers.


Pupils leave Wolfson Hillel Primary School with a secure understanding of the Jewish Sudies academic content; with the understanding of how to be socially, morally, spiritually and culturally responsible and aware as Jewish British citizens. They understand their value within the Jewish and wider community and know how to make positive contributions within them and how to endeavour to be the best that they can be. We aim for all of our children to leave Wolfson Hillel respectful, skillful, ambitious and with a thirst for life and all it has to offer.

Our formal assessment frame works helps monitor pupils progress within Hebrew reading, Ivrit and Chumash. Informal ongoing assessment helps to monitor the impact of our Torah, Tefillah, Jewish year, Jewish Way of Life and script writing objectives. In addition, levels of engagement together with pupil and parent voice are used to monitor the impact of how our spirituality and ethos permeates on a daily basis

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