The Reform Temple of Forest Hills

Religious School

Welcome to the Reform Temple of Forest Hills Religious School!

Join us as we embark on a journey to discover the richness of Jewish tradition through hands-on activities, lively holiday celebrations, and impactful social action. From Kindergarten through 12th grade, the RTFH curriculum covers everything from holidays and Hebrew to the vibrant tapestry of Jewish history and values.

Together, we eat, pray, sing, and learn, creating unforgettable memories and forging lifelong friendships. Whether you’re already a part of our community or just beginning your journey, know that you’re welcomed with open arms. Come, join the fun, and let’s learn more about Religious School together.

Religious School Prayer (Tefilah)

Rise & shine! Most Sundays at 9:00 a.m. your child will be greeted at the RTFH entrance by Religious School staff and security members. They are welcomed up to the Sanctuary, where the entire Religious School gathers for morning tefilah (prayers)

In the Sanctuary, your child is greeted by their Religious School teacher and madrichim (teacher’s assistants) and they sit together with their class during tefilah.  

Tefilah is a 20-minute modified morning service filled with singing, guitar playing, hand clapping, and fun interludes. As the academic year progresses, tefilah is a time when each grade participates by leading a specific prayer their class has been learning throughout the year. Parents are welcome to stay for tefilah to watch their child participate in morning rituals and go up to the bimah to lead a specific prayer with classmates.

Early Grades (Kindergarten-3rd grade)

Sundays from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

In the early grades, Religious School is exclusively on Sundays from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. in the RTFH building.

From morning tefilah in the Sanctuary, your child moves along with their class down to the full-service classrooms to begin the day’s programming.  

There is always something new and exciting happening each week.  We make Judaism approachable and multisensory, whether it’s learning a song for the Chanukah concert or the Purim spiel or participating in decorating the sukkah or in an interactive seder.

At RTFH, we strive to engage all types of learning in our Religious School.  Music, library, breaks for snack, your child will be moving throughout the building with a program designed to keep students engaged and active, especially at these younger years.

Your child will begin learning about major Jewish holidays, the sounds and shapes of Hebrew letters, exploring and practicing Jewish values and concepts like mitzvah (good deeds), tzedakah (charity), and tikkun olam (repairing the world).

Tween & Teen Years (4th grade-7th grade)

Sundays from 9:00-12:00pm AND Wednesdays from 4:30-6:00pm

As your child grows, RTFH’s religious school grows with them. Religious School strives to accommodate busy midweek schedules and also continues to foster growing connections and community among your child’s peer group. Beyond Sunday mornings, Religious School expands to Wednesday afternoons – held virtually on Zoom but also occasionally scheduled live in the RTFH building. 

Religious studies begin to get deeper as they mature, and students are encouraged to make connections between ancient texts and the modern world. Hebrew reading and writing becomes more focused with separate, small-session tutorials (approximately 4 students to a teacher) so that students can begin to prepare in earnest for their B’nai Mitzvah at age 13.

B’nai Mitzvah Years (5th grade-8th grade)

By the middle of 5th grade, your child’s B’nai Mitzvah date will be reserved, and focused individual study begins with Rabbi and Cantor, usually six months before the B’nai Mitzvah date.  

Depending on when in the calendar your child’s birthday lands, their B’nai Mitzvah may be scheduled when they are in 7th or 8th grade, academically.  Religious School is familiar with accommodating summer birthdays, learning differences, and all kinds of families, so that there is nothing detracting from this joyous occasion for you and your child.

You can learn more about our B’nai Mitzvah preparation path here

Post-B’nai Mitzvah Years (8th grade-12th grade)

Your child’s Jewish education does not stop after they complete their B’nai Mitzvah.  At RTFH, we have an active teen-led youth group (ToFHY) which meets weekly for fun activities

You can learn more about ToFHY, our youth group


Madrichim: Teacher’s Aides

Post B’nai Mitzvah, students continue their learning by teaching others in our Religious School as madrachim, or teaching assistants, on Sunday mornings and Wednesday afternoons. This job is a great way to build skills, help others, and make a difference. The students have the opportunity to continue to celebrate connections within the community. Many of the students use their experiences when applying for summer positions as well as for college applications.

Special Programming

Shabbat Reshon (Family Shabbat)

Family Shabbats usually happen on the first Friday night of every month during the academic year.  They are a great way for the whole family to come and celebrate Shabbat with friends in a more casual atmosphere, but they are also a cornerstone of Religious School programming.

Once a year, your child and their Religious School classmates will lead a Shabbat Reshon when they are called up to the bimah to collectively lead the congregation in a prayer, which they have been learning and practicing each Sunday at morning tefilah. Your child will also present on an age-appropriate topic designed by their Religious School teacher to reinforce classroom lessons.   

Through the Religious School program, your child is slowly achieving important milestones comfortably like stepping up to the bimah, leading the congregation in prayer, and speaking in front of a sanctuary full of people.  Through RTFH, sanctuary is a welcoming home for them to express themselves.


Music plays an integral part of RTFH’s normal religious services, and it is an important component of Religious School curriculum. At RTFH, we have dedicated music instructors who are often accompanied by our accomplished RTFH musicians.  

Students begin having a separate music session embedded in their Religious School day starting in kindergarten and continuing through their B’nai Mitzvah year.  Depending on the time of the year, students may be learning their class’s prayer for their Shabbat Reshon service, an uplifting song for the Chanukah concert, or a recent parody for the newest themed Purim spiel.  

At RTFH, the Religious School music program tries to encompass all of the diverse rhythms of the Jewish people. Music can be traditional or modern—in English, Hebrew, Yiddish, or Ladino.  

Students also have the opportunity after Religious School to stay on Sunday afternoon’s to join and practice various choirs led by Cantor.  Tween and teen choirs have opportunities to sing at Friday Shabbat services, local institutions, and have even performed at CitiField. Learn more about our music program here

Annual Family Education Programs

Learning about Judaism and how to be Jewish in the modern world is a family affair, and you will be part of your child’s educational journey, too.  Once a year, you will be asked to join your child and their class in a Sunday morning “Family Ed” hosted by their Religious School teachers and Rabbi and Cantor at RTFH. These Family Eds could tie into an important topic being taught in the classroom by your Religious School teacher, prepare students for their upcoming Shabbat Reshon presentation, and often involve hands-on activities or crafts to reinforce the lesson.

Class Sizes

Depending on the size of each Religious School grade, classes are either one or two groups led by a lead teacher and 1 or 2 madrichim. Madrichim are volunteer high school aged teacher’s assistants who are graduates of our Religious School program.

Have questions?

You can learn more about our Religious School by contacting Faye Gilman, our RTFH Education Leader, at .

Ready to Join? 

You can register for our Religious School by contacting Allan Hoberman, our RTFH Director of Operations & Finance, at .

Tuition & Fees (effective for 2024-2025 academic year)

RTFH believes that finances should never be a barrier to being part of our community. Various payment plan options are available.  If you believe you will be unable to meet your tuition obligations in full, please contact Allan Hoberman, our RTFH Director of Operations & Finance, at .

Pre K through 1st Grade students can be enrolled from non-member families.  Membership is a prerequisite starting in 2nd grade for further enrollment.

Every Member is entitled to the first year of Religious School tuition free for one dependent child in 2nd grade or lower.

Annual Assessments

  • Annual Family Registration Fee (per family): $100
  • Annual Parents’ Association Dues (per family): $18

What’s included?

  • Pre-K through 3rd grade students receive 3 hours/week of instruction (in person)
  • 4th through 7th grade students receive 5 hours/week of instruction (in person & Zoom)
  • ToFHY and Confirmation receive 3 hours/week of activities and instruction
  • Religious school runs from Labor Day to mid-May.
  • B’nai Mitzvah preparation includes intensive one-on-one instruction from RTFH clergy 6-months prior to B’nai Mitzvah date.
Grade LevelRTFH Member (per child)Non-Member (per child)
1st Grade$800$850
2nd Grade$1,020N/A
3rd Grade$1,020N/A
4th Grade$1,240N/A
5th Grade + B’nai Mitzvah Date Confirmation$1,270 + $250 = $1,520N/A
6th Grade$1,270N/A
7th Grade + B’nai Mitzvah Fee$1,270 + $1,250 = $2,520N/A
8th Grade (ToFHY) – B’nai Mitzvah Credit$808 – $500 = $308N/A
9th Grade (ToFHY)$808N/A
10th Grade (Confirmation)$955N/A
11th Grade (ToFHY)*$808N/A
12th Grade (Seniors!)$808N/A

*Additional fees for annual RAC Trip to Washington, D.C.