FAMILY JEWISH LEARNING EXPERIENCES (JLE) is a program for students in gan (kindergarten) and kitah alef (first grade) and their caregivers. Family JLE meets monthly on Saturday mornings at locations around the Ithaca area (and sometimes at Tikkun v’Or). Rabbi Tziona Szajman leads students and their parents/caregivers in learning and play about Shabbat, holidays, and Torah. Contact email@example.com to register after the school year has begun.
Family JAM (Joy and Meaning) is TVO’s program for very young children and their families. Several times a year, we meet for a morning in the sukkah, a nature walk, Chanukah playtime, etc. We’ll have fun activities for families to do together to connect in a Jewish context. Some of this programming is by request — or comes from family ideas. Do you want to have a Family JAM? Let us know!
Tikkun v’Or hosts an Facebook group, “Jewish Parenting in Ithaca.“
Raising kids to love and appreciate their Jewish heritage has a unique set of challenges, whatever your family’s level of observance. Let’s come together in person and on Facebook to have friendly, respected discussions and find ways to mutually support one another in our parenting adventure. The group is open to anyone, at any synagogue or none, who is raising Jewish or interfaith kids.
It’s a closed (but not secret) group, so your posts will be visible only to other members. Join the group as you would any other, and you’ll be approved as quickly as possible.
Ithaca is also home to B’Yachad Jewish Community Pre-School, a play based Jewish preschool serving Jewish children, ages 2.5- 5 (and summer day camp for children 2-8). No synagogue or temple affiliation is required.
PJ Library sends high-quality Jewish-content books and music on a monthly basis to children from age six months to age seven years. The PJ Library is funded nationally in partnership with The Harold Grinspoon Foundation. Sign up here.
Ithaca is also a host of PJ Our Way, offering free books for tweens ages 8-11. The kids get to choose their own book each month, and then have a safe place to write reviews and share ideas with others from around the country. At Jewish Learning Experiences, we incorporate some of the PJ Our Way books into chugim (electives) or other programs.
IAUJC is happy to be a local partner.