Sunday Learning Community

“And You Shall Teach Them [the words of Torah] Diligently To Your Children.” (Deuteronomy 6:7)

Our Sunday morning learning community fulfills this commandment through many lenses. Our Temple has the largest Jewish learning community in the region.  Approximately 200 children and their families engage the words of Torah each week. Starting with infants as teachers of spirituality, continuing in classes from nursery (3-year-olds) through Confirmation (10th grade), and concluding with teen madrichim (guides) (9th-12th), children and families learn according to their age.


Torah curriculum addresses Bible stories applied to everyday family life, biblical guidelines for ethical living, celebration of Jewish holidays, daily acts of kindness (gemilut chasidim) and social justice (tzedakah and mitzvot), and an expanded understanding of spirituality (shalem and ruach) and the practice of prayer (avodah).


We have four pillars of learning

  • Kehillah Kedosha – Creating a Sacred Community
  • Na-aseh V’Nishma – Just Do It…And Then Listen (Ex. 24:7)
  • V’Ahavta L’Rei-acha KaMocha – Love Your Neighbor as Yourself (Lev. 19:18)
  • L’ahma – Why?  Ask Questions.  In spiritual education, questions are more important than answers.

Our methods of Learning-By-Doing include

  • interpreting sacred texts
  • speaking Hebrew
  • singing contemporary and traditional songs of inspiration
  • creating visual art pieces and ritual keepsakes for home
  • physical movement through Yoga Yeladim and Israeli dance
  • community gardening and composting
  • cooking our international culture
  • checking out books from our 2 libraries and archives
  • cartooning
  • photographing and video–recording our stories
  • travelling around our Tidewater community
  • praying each week as a group with Rabbi Mandelberg and Cantor Wally
  • Jewish Individualized Education Plans (JIEPs) with our Open the Gates accommodations for learners with special needs.

We teach our children how to live Jewish lives, embrace Jewish friends and family, connect to a source of spirituality, and understand how they are part of Jewish history.  At the same time, we encourage our children to engage in the whole world of diverse communities, as a normal part of the 4000-year-old story of the Jews. 

Sunday mornings
8:45 – 9:55 a.m. for Hebrew Study (3rd – 6th)

10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for Religious Study (Nursery – 10th)

Madrichim (Teen Guide) Application 9th – 12th (Hebrew Yr 5779)

Register Your Child for the 2018-2019 Year (Hebrew Yr 5779)

NEW! 1-Year Open Enrollment, 2017-18 Independent households (Non-members) may enroll their children in Nursery through 5th grade, and in Hebrew Studies 3rd-5th grade (Alef, Bet and Gimel).

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The OST 1-Year Open Enrollment plan permits children from independent households (i.e., non-members of OST who are not general members of any other synagogue in the Hampton Roads region, and who are eligible for membership in OST) to enroll in Religious Studies or Hebrew Studies on Sunday mornings at OST for one year. Continuation of enrollment for the child in a second year requires that the child’s household becomes a member of OST.

You must be a member of the Temple to Register for 6th-10th grade, and Hebrew Level Dalet.

To pay for Religious Study and/or Hebrew Study or Confirmation Fees CLICK HERE

Temple members may apply for Scholarship Relief from Registration Fees CLICK HERE

2018-19 School Calendar

2018 Sunday Learning Handbook

2018 Hebrew Study Handbook

Download an Activity Release Form

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