May 10, 2016:
Priority Registration for Members and Current Students
May 17, 2016:
General Registration Opens
Adventure Rabbi Program has been providing innovative
ways to engage Jews with Judaism for over a decade.
Our youth education program lives up to our reputation.
is not the religious school you dreaded as a child!
- Conveniently scheduled classes
and carefully designed curriculum
and indoor elements
- Taught by Educator Elaine Barenblat, Emily Norman and Rabbi Jordie Gerson
- Innovative and engaging teaching techniques
ARK is offered in a Variety of Modalities:
- Mixed Grade & Gender
- Girls Only
- Family Learning
There are three core components to the curriculum:
Values, Tradition & Community.
Think of it as mensch training! We
learn about Jewish people from history as well as
contemporary Jewish role models. We talk about the
choices they made and the values they held. When do
we agree? When do we disagree? In what ways do we
want to be like them? In what ways do we want to be
different? Building relationships with characters
from our Jewish People’s past will firmly ground
our students in their past while preparing them for
healthy, strong and vibrant Jewish future.
Students will explore new and traditional
ways to celebrate Jewish ritual. We will discover meaningful Jewish practices and rituals appropriate for our
busy and technologically active lives. For example, when we gather
for a Shabbat, we experience how to make Shabbat
realistic for our families, and experiment with ways
to welcome and say goodbye to Shabbat. We celebrate four Jewish Holidays as a large group: Shabbat/ Havdallah, Simchat Torah, Chanukah and Purim.
The Adventure Rabbi
Program is known for our ability to build community
quickly. We feel that being a part of a Jewish community
is one of the most important elements of the Adventure
Rabbi Kids (ARK) experience. To that end, our experiential
education techniques allow children to make friends
quickly and easily. if your child needs a little extra coaxing to
feel comfortable participating or making friends, please let us know. We try to be especially diligent about keeping an eye out for students who need a little more help engaging socially.
of our meetings will involve both age groups and parents,
so that students can experience being part of a larger
community. Although there is no obligation,
we hope that your entire family will enjoy becoming
involved in Adventure Rabbi additional events, such
as our High Holiday and Passover Retreats, and meet
our fabulous multi-age community.
We combine outdoor and indoor settings as well as
innovative and traditional teaching techniques. We
are aware of the variety of learning styles and will
keep our participants learning from all directions
students will engage in experiential and traditional
learning experiences to provide them with tools to
explore the richness of our Jewish heritage. We will
learn about Jewish values, Jewish personalities, and
Jewish culture. We will build meaningful and genuine relationships
with our tradition and each other. All this and more
will firmly ground their Jewish identity, while helping
them become people with whom we all want to share
Are the Classes Taught Different Material?
The same lesson is taught for the entire school except for All About the Holidays, which has its own curriculum. The manner in which the material is taught differs based on the group.
It is important to know that the curriculum for the school changes each year so that for example, the 1-2 class this year is not taught the same material as it was taught last year.
We use a three year rotating curriculum:
Year 1: Judaism through Time:
The study of Important Jewish Figures (2012-2013 & 2015-2016)
Year 2: Values (2013-2014 & 2016-2017)
Year 3: Tour of the Torah (2014-2015)
ARK Class Choices In List Form:
(see also chart, below >>)
- 1st-2nd Grades More>>
- 3rd-4th Grades More>>
- 5th-6th Grades More>>
- 3rd-4th Girls - Girls Time Jr. More>>
- 5th-6th Girls - Girls Time Sr. More>>
- 3rd-7th grade Kids w/ Parents - All About Holidays More>>
Time and Dates:
- ARK meets about once a month
- ARK is sometimes on Sunday and sometimes on Tuesday.
- All School Programs are on 2 Saturdays, 1 Monday and 1 Wednesday
- All About Holidays is on Saturdays plus four times for All-School Programs
- Our South Boulder location, the beautiful
renovated Bear Creek Elementary School near NCAR,
gives us easy access to outdoor space as well as a comfortable indoor space
suited for children.
- Bear Creek is located at 2500
Table Mesa Drive Boulder, CO 80305
- The Opening Program is at Glacier View Ranch, 40-minutes from Boulder
- All About Holidays meets at Adventure Rabbi Headquarters in South Boulder
In the chart below, the same color = meets at same time
Each class also has its own web page so if you know which class works for you, feel free to click through to that classes page or just go directly to the registration page.
IN CHART FORM:
same color = meets at same time
||Details + Easier to Read Schedule>>
Also Attends All-School
w/ Elaine and Rabbi Jordie
||Girls Time Jr. Grades 3-4
||Girls Time Sr. Grades 5-6
w/ Rabbi Jordie
|3-7 & Adults
All About Holidays
1. Saturday: August 20, 2016
2:30 Girl's Time Early Arrival
3:30 pm – 7:30 pm General Arrival
Opening Adventure: Students their parents will join the rest of the Adventure Rabbi Kids for an outing at Glacier View Ranch 40-minutes from Boulder. We will enjoy games, walk-abouts, and s'mores around a bonfire.
2. Sunday: Aug 28, 2016
3. Sunday: Sept 18, 2016
4.Monday: Oct 24, 2016 (All-School Simchat Torah Celebration)
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
All-school celebration with our parents and siblings
5. Tuesday, Nov 29, 2016
6. Wednesday: Dec 14, 2016 (All-School Chanukah Party)
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
All-school Chanukah party with our parents and siblings
7. Tuesday: Jan 24, 2017
8. Tuesday: Feb 28, 2017
9. Saturday: March 11, 2017 (All-School Purim Party)
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
All-school Purim celebration with our parents and siblings
10. Tuesday: March 21, 2017
11. Sunday: April 30, 2017
About Elaine Barenblat, Adventure Educator:
Elaine is our full-time Adventure Educator, and the director of Adventure Rabbi Kids (ARK).
Elaine is adored by our students because she makes learning fun and genuinely cares about their experience. Her enthusiasm for Jewish learning has brought an extra spark to ARK.
In addition to ARK, Elaine tutors many of our students in Hebrew and additional Jewish studies, runs our teen program, mentors our interns and runs our 20s/30s program.
Elaine is a native of San Antonio, Texas, but has always had her heart in Colorado's mountains. She received her Interdisciplinary Studies degree from the University of North Texas with a focus in early childhood and special education.
About Emily Norman:
Soon after moving to Boulder in August 2006 Emily participated in her first Adventure Rabbi hike. A proponent of AR ever since, Emily is thrilled to begin a new chapter as a member of the teaching staff.
Currently a theatre educator at Watershed School and a teaching artist at the Denver JCC, Emily's primary position is the Director of Education and Founder of Acting Out Theatre Company, an educational theatre company serving Boulder County. More about Acting Out Theatre Company>>
Emily holds an MA from NYU in Educational Theatre in Colleges and Communities and a BA from Wheaton College (Norton, MA). She has completed a certification program at Shakespeare's Globe in London, studied Community-Engaged Theatre in Ireland and attended Eugene O'Neill's National Theatre Institute in Waterford, CT.
About Rabbi Jordie Gerson, Adventure Rabbi:(coming soon!)
$399 for members
$449 for non-members
Girls Time: (includes 4 dinners and small staff to student ratio)
$449 for members
$499 for non-members
All About the Holidays:
$250 for members
$299 for non-members
same price for adult or child
(No sibling discounts)
Tuition Details & Discounts:
- $25 Discount for Siblings
- After August 1, 2016 fee is +$25 student if there
Refunds are not available unless you purchase
$36 tuition insurance per student, in which case classes will
be pro-rated and you will receive refund for remaining
classes, minus $36.
Note: Cell phones and other similar electronic devices are not permitted at Adventure Rabbi Kids classes including Girls Time, All about Holidays and the Adventure B'nai Mitzvah Class. If your student needs to bring a phone so that they can contact a parent at the end of class, they can keep it out of sight in their backpack/bag. If they use it during class, it will be taken away and returned after class.
a Membership for You and Your Child to the Adventure Rabbi Congregation.
us tell you why this is both:
Sustain the Adventure Rabbi Program
membership year runs from January - December.
even if you sign up now, there's lots of great
events that you can still attend for free, including:
Kippur (Kol Nidre, Kids Program)
You'll save a bit on tuition.
And if you don't use all of the included events,
you can convert the membership into an end-of-year
tax deduction of up to $180 for your child and $375 for yourself.
information about membership is here >>
Priority Registration for Members, Current and Wait-list Students
Opens May 10, 2016
General Registration Opens May 17, 2016
Register Here >>
Interview about Adventure Rabbi Kids
by Boulder Jewish News:
“sat down” with Adventure Rabbi Evon Yakar, who runs
Adventure Rabbi Kids (ARK), (the Adventure Rabbi Program’s
alternative religious school) and Distance Learning
Program to ask a few questions and learn more about
this new type of Jewish education. This interview
is about the local program. In a few weeks we will
read about the Distance Learning Program, which reaches
students from Bankok to Baltimore and beyond.
One of your students came out of religious school
and said, “That was the best day of camp ever.” Why
did he call it camp?
is a great question! Jewish education for our
young people is about positive Jewish experiences
in a positive Jewish environment.
adopted this goal as the Director of Education of
a 420+ student complementary synagogue school (traditional
religious school).I quickly learned that the style
of programming that would achieve this goal most often
occurred in our Reform Jewish summer camps (from my
experience). So, our Adventure Rabbi Kids programming
keeps that in mind. The sessions are interactive
and student directed. We go outside to explore
the natural world and come indoors to integrate our
ARK explore Jewish values and go home each month with
something they can use in their daily life.
Camp style Jewish education is successful because
it is lived every moment while living in community.
We try to give our participants a couple hours a month
of that style of learning.”
I noticed on your website that you call your program
Adventure Rabbi Kids (our alternative religious school)
as if you are distancing yourself from calling it
a school. Its as if you only label it school so parents
know what box to check off on their to-do list. What’s
that all about?
pretty much got it. Its a way for parents to
check it off their list because most of our community
members (Adventure Rabbi, Jewish Community Center,
Synagogue Community… whatever it may be) feel a sense
of obligation in educating their children. Our program
is definitely not a religious school program.
At least not how they have been experienced for the
last half century.
I wanted to not use the word school at all because
I work hard to create a different experience from
my own traditional religious school education (my
mother is a world class Jewish educator and my Hebrew
school principal!), but in the end, our families felt
attached to using that title, “alternative religious
Many of us in Boulder didn’t realize that your congregation
had a religious school so let’s start with basics. What
grades do you include?
First grade through 6th. Then our Adventure Bar and
Bat Mitzvah class has students 6th through 9th.”
Q: How often do you meet?
A: Generally a little more than once
a month. The B’nai Mitzvah class meets 16 times in
10 months. Adventure Rabbi Kids meets 11 times in
Q: Where do you meet?
A: We meet at Bear Creek Elementary
School in South Boulder. Its a great space and has
lots of fun outdoor areas we can explore.”
Q: How many students do you
A: I think we’re at about 90 right
now. We have a bit of a waiting list and we are trying
to expand so we can take everyone who wants to be
in without losing our small school feel.”
Q: Can kids who are members
of the Adventure Rabbi: Synagogue Without Walls attend?
A: Yes, although we love when they
do become members.”
Q: How do you teach Hebrew?
A: We have a team of tutors we use.
Some of them teach in person and some teach
over Skype. We find one on one and small group learning
to be the most efficient way to learn. Our families
are super busy so we try to make learning Hebrew fit
into their highly scheduled weeks.”
What makes Adventure Rabbi Kids different than other
A: Our programming is based on
Jewish values. Each session focuses on a specific
value, like Shalom Bayit – Peace in the Home.
We then explore our characters/ancestors from our
Jewish story have lived, or failed to, these values. We
examine the value in our own daily life in the hopes
that our participants, and their families, will go
off and bring them into their daily lives. This
sets us apart as we do not aim to teach only about
holidays, Bible stories and specific Jewish practice.
We have narrowed our scope to create positive Jewish
experiences in a positive Jewish environment.”
Q: If one of our readers wanted
to teach with you, do you hire? What would you
be looking for? How would they find you?
A: We are going to be hiring
a new teacher or two for next year, so if you hear
of someone great let them know! I will be looking
for a teacher who loves experiential education and
has experience. It is also imperative that this individual
is in sync with the Adventure Rabbi way of doing things.
They could contact me through our website.”
Q: What is your primary goal
with the school?
A. We want our students to love being
Jewish. Period. Oh yeah, we also want them to
become people with whom we want to share the earth!
We figure if they love being Jewish, they will go
on to learn about the history of the state of Israel
and what Shemni Atzerit is. But if they leave religious
school hating being Jewish, it doesn’t matter how
much information they have been taught. If they hate
their experience, they will walk out the door and
not come back.”
We started with a comment I heard from one of your
students. What is your favorite thing to hear?
A: I love when parents tell me their
kids love coming to Adventure Rabbi Kids. When kids
leave eagerly asking, “When do we have Adventure
Rabbi Kids again” I know we are doing something right.”