Chicago Jewish Day School
 
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CJDS Experience

Insights and Inspirations

CJDS postcards highlighting our academics, extra-curricular and exciting news!

Read, Lead, Succeed

Reading Workshop is a time where children learn to read with power, intention, and joy. It is a time to teach children the reading skills and strategies they need to get through texts while also guiding them to become independent readers who love to read. In order to grow into strong readers, students must read, read, read.

In Reading Workshop, students will read independently every day while teachers confer with individual readers, partners, and small groups to offer individualized direct instruction. Readers select their own appropriate books to read that are at their independent reading level based on their reading accuracy, fluency, and comprehension. When readers choose their own “just right” books, it enables higher interest and investment in their own reading...
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Celebrating Families

At CJDS, our Kindergarten students learn about each other’s families. They learn and appreciate that everyone has a family that loves them, and each family has its own unique traditions and activities that they like to do together. From reading books about families to making a family web, our students discuss amongst each other what it means to be in a family. Our students explore the different roles that they play in a family, both in Hebrew and in English.
 
They study about birth order and create a giant class pie graph where each child fills in a piece of the pie using these categories: oldest, middle, youngest, or only child. Kindergarten students make their own family books using writing prompts for each page. They make a connection to the Ten Commandments by learning about honoring their parents, Kibbud Av V’aim...
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Go CJDS Rams!

Chicago Jewish Day School’s Athletics Program began with Running Club in 2012. As an extracurricular activity, the Running Club met weekly to experience the joy of a social fitness activity. Since then, CJDS has expanded our programs to include teams that represent our school in competition against other schools. In 2013, we ran our first Cross Country meet against 23 other schools, played our first basketball game, and organized our first volleyball team. We also unveiled our CJDS school mascot — go Rams!
 
CJDS is growing, and our Athletics Program is developing to meet the needs of the students. The goal of the Athletics Program is 100% participation. In order to reach this goal, we need a variety of programs as diverse as our students' interests, and we are up to the challenge! As the Middle School expands, CJDS’s Athletics continue to add team and individual sports to its selection...
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Mazal Tov Judy!

The entire CJDS community wishes a hearty Mazal Tov to our Head of School, Judy Finkelstein-Taff, for receiving the prestigious 2013 Covenant Award! This annual award, established in 1991, honors three professionals from across North America who exemplify excellence and impact in Jewish education.
 
The Covenant Foundation, based in New York City, is a partnership between the Crown Family Philanthropies and the Jewish Education Service of North America. The Foundation will present Judy with the award at a dinner in Chicago on Sunday, October 27.
 
The CJDS community already knows how amazing Ms. J is. We see her handiwork every day in the environment she has fostered and built in partnership with dedicated administration, faculty, staff, parents, lay leaders, and other critical supporters. It is quite fitting that the excitement and importance of Ms. J’s efforts receive this major national recognition...
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Ten and Growing

“Over the past 10 years we have been building our future. Chicago Jewish Day School was, and now indelibly is, the newest big idea in Jewish community life and Jewish education in particular.”- Judy Finkelstein-Taff • Head of School
 
As Judy Finkelstein-Taff said, Chicago Jewish Day School is the newest big idea. The 10th anniversary year helped us reach this milestone and allowed us to feel the excitement of the next ten years and beyond. Because of your dedication and passion for CJDS, we raised over 1.1 million dollars for the students of Chicago Jewish Day School. This significant accomplishment was achieved with the generous support of the entire community...
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Mapmaking and More

Integrating all of the curricular disciplines in meaningful and authentic ways is a central part of the Chicago Jewish Day School curriculum. This holistic approach to learning reflects the real world, which is interactive, and promotes lifelong learning and curiosity. One example of this is the Grade Four General Studies mapping unit. The teachers creatively integrated the areas of Social Studies, Language Arts, Hebrew and Judaic Studies, Technology, and Art.
 
Using recycled materials, each student made an eco-friendly topographical map of Israel in Art. The students then labeled important sites and cities on the map in both Hebrew and English. Utilizing a variety of resources, each student then researched one of the sites or cities on the map and wrote a five paragraph expository essay on that site or city in Language Arts...
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Celebrating 10!

Chicago Jewish Day School opened in 2002 with seven students and now begins its tenth year with 180 students in JK through Grade 8. CJDS’ first decade of success can be highlighted by ten specific accomplishments.
  • Awarded full accreditation from the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS)
  • Adhered to mission of creating a multi-denominational day school community as represented by the wide range of Jewish practice of its families, board members and staff
  • Employed cutting edge technology within the classroom environment for all students’ benefit.
  • Graduated first class of students in 2012...
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New Year, New Beginnings

The start of the school year always brings new reasons to celebrate. This year in particular, Chicago Jewish Day School has a lot of new and exciting things to look forward to.
 
The 2011–2012 school year will be a milestone year for CJDS. We have our largest enrollment to date as we open our doors to 162 students, and we are excited to announce that the Middle School Annex, the ‘Blue House’ next door, directly north of CJDS, will this year be the new home for our growing Middle School. We also look forward to our first Grade Eight traveling to Israel this year and returning to graduate in June 2012...
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Math Moments

In Kindergarten, the math program emphasis is placed on the learning process. The teachers provide hands-on activities that help students to develop and gain insight into mathematical patterns through the use of concrete materials. The students use technology to strengthen those math skills. Utilizing various computer programs students create graphs, patterns and geometric pictures. In Hebrew and Judaic Studies, the teachers integrate mathematic skills through counting, calendar activities, and building a Hebrew mathematical vocabulary. Throughout the year students develop an understanding of mathematical thinking; language and symbols; numbers and operations; measurement; patterning; geometry; data collection and probability...
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100 Days, 100% Participation

Chicago Jewish Day School’s staff and students were thrilled to celebrate the 100th day of school on Monday, February 28. In the lower grades, students were found making 100 piece collages, measuring and weighing groupings of 100 items, writing 100 words or performing 100 physical activities such as jumping jacks and hops. Activities in the older grades centered on math skills related to statistics and probability and Grade Six and Seven students led the lower grades in 100 Day math games...
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A Journey to Remember

This winter, our Grade Two students learned all about immigration through an experiential exploration of immigration in the United States during the late 1800s into the early 1900s. Students connected their learning by gaining information on their personal family history and gained knowledge of the immigration experience through a variety of resources. In addition to the many books, both fiction and nonfiction, that they read, students had the opportunity to hear many immigration stories first hand as parents, grandparents, and teachers visited the class to share their own family experiences...
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Taking a Closer Look

In Grade Three science, we are learning how to observe the world around us, record information, and make predictions based on prior knowledge. In our weather unit, we are broadening our understanding of the world around us by making hypotheses, testing ideas, and gaining new knowledge to understand how things work. We look at daily weather and predict what is to come so we can learn how scientists observe the world around them and make discoveries. Our classroom experiments are linked to real world experiences to uncover facts about air pressure, temperature changes, and the way in which heat effects air...
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