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Fluency in general studies across disciplines is an essential component of a true ben/bat Torah. A Barkai Yeshivah student is taught that to know the world is to know God. General studies including reading, writing, math, science, history, technology, and the arts are all critical to developing our students into integrated and productive members of society. Students learn about the world around them from multiple perspectives and across disciplines emerging with world-view that is nuanced and complex and encourages them to think analytically and creatively. Students are taught through guided experimentation and exploration of materials in order to develop a functional understanding of concepts, their implications, and applications. Students are afforded meaningful opportunities to apply their learning in real world situations and engage in interactive experiences, both within and outside the school, that bring learning to life. Our curricula pair rich content with creative expression, placing an emphasis on critical thinking, problem solving, and cooperative group learning. Teachers actively engage students in relevant and challenging experiences to gradually build breadth and depth of knowledge in each subject area. Teachers identify and develop in students the skills needed to engage and succeed in today’s world with students emerging from their Barkai Yeshivah experience as confident, knowledgeable, and independent learners, well prepared for the next stage of their education.
At Barkai Yeshivah, we value the teaching of Hebrew as the language of our Torah, as well as the language of our modern day nation. Our aim is for students to acquire mastery of the language in order to understand Biblical and later Hebrew texts as well as be able to express themselves in fluent Hebrew. Barkai Yeshivah implements a Hebrew immersion program that incorporates active instruction. Hebrew immersion is started in Gan by having Hebrew speakers interact with students through conversation. In Mechinah, formal instruction of Hebrew reading begins. Students learn to recognize the letters of the alef bet, progress to learning nekudot, and then learn te'amim with the Rav Mechinah. Our commitment to Ivrit be’Ivrit requires that all Hebrew studies be taught in Hebrew. Barkai Yeshivah utilizes Shelihim and Benot Sherut as resources in the organic transmission of the Hebrew language through everyday conversation.
Barkai Yeshivah recognizes that burning at the center of the Jewish heart through all generations is the awareness that our people call only one land ‘home.’ Love and commitment to Eres Yisrael, as well as the understanding that Israel is our only true home, is in the heart and mind of every student. We have a profound connection to the land of Israel as we recognize it as our ancestral and Biblical homeland. We recognize God’s providence in the establishment of the modern State of Israel and its security and prosperity are central to our worldview. We view Israel as the global center of the Jewish nation with our community being an outpost of the Jews living in Israel. To build and enhance this connection with Eres Yisrael, each year, we bring in multiple Israeli families as Shelihim who teach Hebrew studies and and also serve as role models for Torah values. We also have several Benot Sherut each year to interact with students in Hebrew, on a daily basis, while working with the school to develop programs and extracurricular activities. The ultimate goal is for the Shelihim and Benot Sherut to infuse the fabric of Barkai Yeshivah with a love for Eres Yisrael by fostering genuine relationships between those who live a Torah life in Eres Yisrael and the Barkai community.
Sense of Identity
As a result of their educational experiences during their years at Barkai Yeshivah, students emerge with a developed sense of self and the unwavering ability to express their values in the world. We teach our students to examine their thoughts and deeds, guiding them to refine their character and build integrity. The education they receive throughout their years at Barkai Yeshivah serves as a solid foundation for their enduring identity and deep integrity, which is exemplified by their commitment to hesed and their outstanding midot. The values that Barkai Yeshivah instills in our students will help usher them into adulthood as contributing members of Kelal Yisrael and society at large.
Barkai Yeshivah seeks to preserve our centuries-old Aleppian tradition by passing on our liturgy, pizmonim, accurate reading, te’amim, and minhagim to our students. We take pride in our tradition which allows us to express our Judaism in a modern world. Barkai Yeshivah strives to create an authentic atmosphere in which our students are able to absorb the culture and integrate it into their personal identity so that they will continue to transmit our heritage to the next generation.
Torah ”בן חמש שנים למקרא, בן עשר למשנה, בן שלש עשרה למצות, בן חמש עשרה לתלמוד.“ (פרקי אבות 5:2) At Barkai Yeshivah, we believe that all elements of our world should be recognized through the framework of Torah. In order to build the requisite Torah foundation for each student, we use the Barkai Method. The Barkai Method views the love of Torah as central to the construction of a student’s personal identity. The students’ intellectual, spiritual, and emotional growth are nurtured through Torah learning, according to the order delineated by Hazal. The Barkai method exposes students to the richness of Torah text, makes Torah relevant to every facet of life, and presents all 613 Misvot in their appropriate context, with a focus on integrating Torah with the General Studies curriculum. According to the Barkai Method, Tanakh is taught by exposing the depth of peshat through study of grammar and syntax, the meaning of each word, the context of each pasuk, and the structure of every paragraph. Humash and Neviim Rishonim are taught sequentially and in their entirety, pasuk by pasuk, starting in first grade. Sensitive topics are addressed by teachers on the student’s developmental level to help the student understand these topics in a sanctified manner. Repetition of the text with the te’amim throughout a student’s youth deeply ingrains the Tanach in the student’s memory. This shinun connects students to thousands of years of Jewish tradition and develops love of and fidelity to the Torah itself. Before progressing to Midrash it is critical for students to have broad fluency in Torah to fully appreciate the messages of Midrash. Midrash and Rashi are studied as serious disciplines to appropriately convey the values and ideas that they contain. Precise understanding of case law, and reason in Mishnah is taught to students to serve as a backbone in their understanding of Torah She’beal Peh. All of our students engage in broad study of the Mishnah text, with the boys completing a full seder by graduation. Students are prepared with an understanding of Talmud; its structure, development, and content. A Torani atmosphere is present throughout the school building. Beginning in first grade, classrooms for all subjects are separate gender while Middle School boys and girls are in separate areas. We are committed to teaching Halacha based on the law as prescribed by Rabbi Yosef Karo in the Shulhan Aruch, as shaped and developed through the generations by the long standing minhagim of the Aram Soba community. The 13 Ikarim of Rambam serve as the core principles of our faith.
Warm & Child-Centered
Warmth and dedication to our students are core to Barkai Yeshivah’s philosophy. We value the uniqueness of each student and understand that no two children learn in exactly the same way. We engage the many facets of each child as we aspire to tap into the academic, social, emotional, physical, spiritual, and creative development of each student. Social and emotional skills are explicitly taught and integrated into the academic program. Teachers engage students in discussions and opportunities to practice these skills daily. Teacher-student relationships shape the way students develop in school. Teachers work to connect with each student and serve as role models who guide them. Small classroom size, small school size, and individualized attention are essential to the achievement of our mission. A close knit and community-oriented atmosphere, where students, staff, and the parent body partner, is essential to our warm environment. Respect for differences and tolerance for all are cornerstones of our world view.
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