Baneinu — Youth Education

The TBS Religious School, now known as Baneinu, Hebrew for “Our Children”, is an integral part of the synagogue community’s lifelong learning. The mission of Baneinu is to create an engaging learning community in which students develop Jewish identity and the means by which to integrate tikkun olam (“repairing the world”) into their lives by studying Jewish culture, history, values, traditions, and the textual and spiritual foundations of Judaism.

Our dedicated teaching staff promotes positive Jewish identity, self-image, and commitment among our students. It emphasizes growth and development in each child and strives to form a strong identification with the Jewish people. We serve children from birth through teens. Beginning in 2nd grade, students are given the opportunity to begin Hebrew classes and to advance to more difficult levels as they gain new skills.

We hope that you will visit any of our youth education programs and reach out to our Youth Education Director to learn more about how your child can make new friends and begin to develop their own sense of Jewish identity.

Scholarships are available to those in need. Contact Amber, the Operations Manager, for more information, your request will be kept confidential.

Family involvement is an essential part of your child’s ability to find his or her own Jewish identity. We invite you and encourage you to attend the variety of holiday celebrations, religious services, and family-centered community and social events that TBS offers throughout the year. Not only will your child develop a greater sense of his or her place in the community, but so will you!

PJ library logo

PJ Library

TBS is proud to sponsor the PJ Library program for Jewish children in Salem and surrounding areas.

The PJ Library (PJ for Pajamas) is a program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation in partnership with local Jewish communities. Its goal is to support the Jewish journeys of families raising young children.

Knowing that families read together in the quiet moments before bedtime, when kids are in their PJs and getting ready for sleep, the program’s founders thought, “Why not make these moments Jewish moments”?

The PJ Library program mails free, high-quality Jewish children’s books and music to families across North America on a monthly basis, helping them explore the timeless core values of Judaism

To learn more or to sign up to participate in this wonderful program, contact the office.

B'nai Mitzvah

A Bar Mitzvah, “son of the commandment,” or Bat Mitzvah, “daughter of the commandment,” is a major milestone in the life of a Jewish teen and his/her family.  At TBS, we celebrate B’nai Mitzvah as a community.  Each Bar/Bat Mitzvah takes place during a congregational worship service, and is open to the entire community.  Our Bar/Bat Mitzvah curriculum is designed to strengthen Jewish identity and knowledge of Judaism among our teens through ritual, learning, and community involvement.  TBS has put together a B’Nai Mitzvah Guide for candidates and their parents to help them navigate the year leading up to the very special Shabbat.

All of our B’nai Mitzvah candidates develop their own “mitzvah project” as part of their study and preparation to become an adult in the Jewish community.  These projects range from raising money for the kids’ favorite causes to actually doing volunteer work in the community.  As a congregation, we all support the students as they go through this process of learning about caring for the world around them.

Some of the organizations that have benefitted from our students’ mitzvah projects are:  

B'nai Mitzvah students practicing reading from Torah scroll
B'nai Mitzvah students practicing reading from Torah scroll

From Consecration to B’nai Mitzvah and beyond

B’nai Mitzvah students can also choose to participate in Yad Vashem’s “twinning” opportunity where the student can be twinned with a child who did not have a chance to mark this important rite of passage. The child being remembered will share something with the participant – a birthday, a name or place of origin.

Jew Crew

Jew Crew putting their faces through animal cut outs at E.Z. Orchards

Once our children have graduated from Baneinu, they have another opportunity to continue their Jewish education as teenagers.  Our “Jew Crew” program is geared toward youth ages 13 through 18.  Jew Crew is a combination of Jewish education, social events, and mitzvot.  Previous events have included: bowling, trips to the pumpkin patch, arcades, game nights, etc. Jew Crew teens have also done yard clean-up for our senior TBS members, helped with TBS hamantaschen fundraiser, TBS auction, and more.