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Themed Studies

THEMED STUDIES▼

A Four Year High School Curriculum

We are excited to share our broad vision for the Shulamith High School for Girls curriculum. When designing our educational program, we asked ourselves, “What is our goal for our graduates? How do we help each student find her mission and purpose? How can we create a school-wide culture focused on intellectual, emotional and spiritual growth?”

Gleaning inspiration from Tanach, we designed our curriculum around four overarching themes. Each year’s central theme informs our curricular decisions and impacts our teachers, from הלכה to History, from שיר השירים to Shakespeare. Our goal is for the faculty to create lessons and extracurricular programs framed by a defined message.

By the end of the four years, we intend to have instilled in our students an understanding and appreciation for themselves, their community and their connection to G-d. We believe these themes will help guide our students towards becoming their best selves.

FRESHMAN YEAR: IDENTITY

The focus of freshman year is identity or recognition of the self.
Essential questions that students will explore:
Who am I? What makes me unique? Who can I become? How can I develop study skills to successfully navigate high school? How do I find my voice, passion and confidence? How do I develop resilience? How do I build character and become my best self? How can I discover my inner beauty? How do I connect with my spiritual core?

Some examples from the curriculum:
● Public Speaking core curriculum
● Jewish Philosophy: Finding the צלם אלקים within each of us. How will we develop our character and middot?
● ספר שמות: Discovering strength in the face of adversity through an analysis of strong personalities: Batya, Yocheved, Moshe, Aharon, Miriam, and Pharaoh.
● History: How did Israel develop as a nation? Who are we as a nation?
● יום העצמאות and יום הזיכרון Programming: How do these commemorative days help us identify with and appreciate the struggles and triumphs of מדינת ישראל?

SOPHOMORE YEAR: FRIENDSHIPS AND RELATIONSHIPS

We are daughters, granddaughters, students, friends, sisters, and בנות ישראל. It is these relationships that define us. At Shulamith, our curriculum will help develop the tools to better connect with others and with Hashem.
Essential questions that students will explore:
How can I be a good friend? How can I respect and appreciate the צלם אלקים in others? How do I stand up to peer pressure and maintain a sense of self? How do I build trust with my parents? How can I gain respect from my teachers? How do I understand my role as a Jewish woman? How can I connect with Hashem?

Some examples from the curriculum:
● English: A Midsummer Night’s Dream- exploring the relationship between the protagonists and antagonists. How do our friends define us?
● הלכה: הלכות בין אדם לחברו: How we are expected to relate to one another and within society at large?
● Foundations Curriculum: Developing your spiritual potential.
● Learning Center: peer tutoring and writing workshops. How do I help my friends succeed? How does this contribute to my success as well?

JUNIOR YEAR: LEADERSHIP AND CITIZENSHIP 

After two years focused on identity and relationships, students are ready to look outward, toward citizenship and the core values that motivate and inspire great leaders. As a Jewish nation, we are charged with a dual challenge. At times, we must live and lead by example (מַמְלֶכֶת כֹּהֲנִים) while at times we must live as citizens of a nation (גוֹי קָדוֹשׁ).
Essential questions that students will explore:
What does it take to be a leader and/or role model? How do I lead from my core values? How can I live an inspired life as an ‘עבד ה? How does Halacha act as a moral and ethical code for life? Exploring עריבות: what is my responsibility to עם ישראל?

Some examples from the curriculum:
● US Government and Politics: What makes a great leader? What are our roles as citizens. How and why should we participate in the democratic process?
● ספר במדבר: Understanding Moshe’s role. As a leader, how did he overcome adversity? How did we develop as a nation through challenges and redemption?
● תפילה: How do I grow through תפילה? What are our core values represented in תפילה? Why do we pray as a community?
● Color War: How do we work as a team? What makes powerful generals inspiring?

SENIOR YEAR: GOALS, DREAMS AND MAKING A DIFFERENCE 

As high school seniors, students begin to reflect on their impact on the world outside the school building. Herein lies the ultimate goal of Shulamith: to guide young women towards becoming their best selves. We encourage our students to pursue mission driven lives – lives that are informed by תורה, מצות, חסד and Godly purpose.
Essential questions that students will explore:
How do I create lifelong goals? What career will I pursue? What obstacles will I face? Which have I overcome already? What tools was I given by G-d and how do I use them to better the world? How do I live with purpose? How can I give back to my family and community?

Some examples from the curriculum:
● AP English: What is the American Dream in The Great Gatsby? Is this dream fulfilled? Are all dreams possible?
● ספר בראשית: Dreams: Yaakov, Yosef, and Pharoah. What do our dreams say about who we are?
● Economics: How does charity affect the cycle of supply and demand? How do I balance family and career? How do I choose a career?
● AP Political Science. The Federal Bureaucracy. Should the people or the government be responsible for large societal problems such as healthcare and social security?
● Seminary and College Guidance. Which college and seminary are right for me? How do I navigate the application process?