Education for Young People

Tot Shabbat

Tot Shabbat is a fun way to celebrate Shabbat with other kids and parents! Our monthly Tot Shabbat program, led by Rabbi Romer, is designed for newborn through kindergarten-aged children. Tot Shabbat is a 30-minute parent-participation program. The Rabbi plays guitar while introducing the basic elements of Jewish religion, its traditions and practices. Tot Shabbat also explores holiday themes as well as Hebrew letters and beginning vocabulary. All this is done through music, singing and signing, props, play-acting, storytelling and crafts.
Each Tot Shabbat is followed by a special Kiddush, complete with challah and grape juice, as well as a variety of healthy snacks for kids and parents.

This is a free program open to the community. All are welcome!

Toddler and Pre-K Program and Activities

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Religious School

Fun, friends, exploration, and growth. Welcome to Zimet Religious School’s Gan Shalom, a place where children are able to grow and learn in a Jewish setting. Our program is ideally geared for children between 36 months and 6 years.

Hebrew, holidays, customs and values are integrated into our activities: Stories, music, singing, dancing, cooking, art projects and special Shabbat programs are featured.

Tot Shabbat

Students at this age, along with their younger siblings, are encouraged to attend the monthly Tot Shabbat led by Rabbi Yael. During class, children are introduced to the basic elements of Jewish religion, its traditions and practices, as well as Hebrew letters and beginning vocabulary.

The Family Shabbat Project

The Family Shabbat Project’s theme changes from event to event, but always involves a kid-centered event for the whole family. These events are always free and open to the whole community. Registration requested.

Congregation Emanuel Parents Group

Jewish parenting topics are discussed with other parents, led by Rabbi Romer. Child care and light refreshments will be provided. These events are always free and open to the community; $5 per child is requested for child care. Registration required.

Leonard and Barbara Zimet Religious School

Welcome to the Leonard & Barbara Zimet Religious School, a proud part of Congregation Emanuel of the Hudson Valley. Whether your child is still learning to walk; gearing up for preschool; in middle school; or has already become a B’nai mitzvah, there is a place here at Zimet Religious School. Wherever you are in your family’s Jewish journey, we welcome you as part of our family.

The Zimet School goes beyond merely teaching students; we are educators who help to form bonds between students, teachers and families. Our congregation is a warm and welcoming one, and we emulate this within the walls of our school.

Whether your child is already enrolled in our school or you are seeking more information, we would love to talk to you about making this school year a great one for your family. Please contact Samara D. Gilman, Religious School Director: (845) 338-4271 x110.

Religious School Calendar 2018-2019

Registration Form 5779 2018-2019 with Photo Release

Learning in Jewish Time:

Classes meet on Saturday morning, while our adult community is in services. Students are afforded the opportunity not just to be a part of Shabbat, but to truly connect. They are given the advantage of forming a Jewish family with their classmates as well as the congregation.

Grades 1-8 meet Saturdays, 9:30-12:30

Pre-k and K meet Saturdays, 9:30-11, with aftercare available 11-12:30.

Grades 9-10 meet various days throughout the year, to be determined at the start of the year.

Hebrew Curriculum

Our Religious School always welcomes new students and is experienced working with children who have had very little Hebrew education. The Hebrew curriculum is individualized, so that students in the same class can work at different paces, guided by both teachers and madrichim (class aides).

Additional Programs

In addition to classroom study, our school provides hands-on learning integrated with social interaction—a recipe for creating lifelong memories and friends.

  • Junior Congregation
  • Music Program, with both singing and movement
  • Jewish Art
  • Jewish Cooking
  • Games
  • Holiday Programming
  • Challah Baking
  • Israeli Dancing
  • Tikkun Olam/Tzedakah Projects
  • Weekly Challenges
  • In-school library
  • Field Trips


Pre-K and K, along with their younger siblings, are encouraged to attend the monthly Tot Shabbat led by Rabbi Yael. During class, children are introduced to the basic elements of Jewish religion, its traditions and practices, as well as Hebrew letters and beginning vocabulary.

3–7 builds on the core knowledge from the lower grades while preparing to complete study toward becoming a bat/bar mitzvah.

Grade 8’s Jewish Lens curriculum is designed for post-bar/bat mitzvah to explore Jewish values. Students at this level may also join Team Madrichim and participate as madrichim (aides) during the second half of the school day.

Post bar/bat mitzvah students entering grades 9 and 10 have Confirmation Class taught by our own Rabbi Yael Romer. Students entering grades 9–12 may work in the school as part of Team Madrichim.

B’nai Mitzvah Preparation Program

Bar/Bat Mitzvah is the Jewish rite of passage through which a young adult demonstrates his or her preparedness and commitment to take on the responsibilities of a Jewish adult and a member of our congregation.

During the two years prior to becoming Bar/Bat Mitzvah the student:

  1. Attends courses on Jewish history and culture, ritual and prayer, and Hebrew.
  2. Actively participates in Shabbat and Holiday services with their family.
  3. Is involved in planning and attending community events.
  4. Participates in private Torah study with the Rabbi.

The two years of study culminates in a ceremony during Shabbat in which the Bar/Bat Mitzvah is called to the Torah, reads Torah and Haftorah, participates by helping to lead the service, and delivers a derasha (teaching) on the meaning of the weekly Torah portion.


The Confirmation Program at Congregation Emanuel is for 9th and 10th graders to continue to explore their Jewish education through dynamic and informal dinners and discussions with Rabbi Romer. Conversations include subjects relevant to the lives of young Jewish adults, sourcing from Israeli newspaper articles, movies, and current events. Rabbi Romer recognizes that our students and their peers have many commitments as High School students, therefore the confirmation is built around participation. There is no homework. The program ends each year with a special ceremony as part of the last day of Religious school.

Congregation Emanuel’s Confirmation program includes a Shabbaton Confirmation trip, which is open to all enrolled students. The trip is to Newport, RI or Philadelphia, PA on alternating years.

Confirmation Calendar 2018 - Final