Children & Youth

All things CRC from birth to confirmation

Logo for the Nest. Text reads "The Nest, Early Childhood Program at CRC" and the text is nestled in a nest.
6-Weeks-Old to 5-Years-Old

The Nest

The Nest is CRC’s early childhood center.
We provide care for children 6 weeks to 5+ years of age.
Our Mission is to provide a safe and loving environment where each child is valued for who they are.

At top, a rainbow with clouds. Text reads "rainbow, from birth to age four."
4-Years-Old or Younger

Rainbow

Rainbow is open to the community and is offered once a month for families with young children prior to entering Pre-K. These sessions are designed to feature interactive Jewish activities such as music, movement, art, stories, and play.

Contact:
Maxine at 314-361-3919 x118 or maxine@centralreform.org. Read our FAQ

In the bottom corner, text reads "Summer Tot Shabbat" on a purple square. In the background, a blurred photo of children dancing while an adult plays a tamborine.
Pre-School (and siblings)

Tot Shabbat

Tot Shabbat is a wonderful way to welcome Shabbat with your families during the summer! We are currently out of season for Tot Shabbat and hope you will join us at an upcoming Family Service. 

Text reads Family Service. In the foreground, two CRC babies touch hands, both held by their parents. In the background, Rabbi Randy claps and holds guitar.
Pre-School to 6th Grade

Family Services

Join us every Shabbat morning for a fun & informal chance to sing, reflect, and learn together. This 30-minute service is geared towards our youngest members, but all our welcome to watch online!

Family Shabbat services take place each Saturday morning at 9:30 am in CRC's Multipurpose Room or wherever noted in our calendar. When Shabbat school is not in session, it will stream to our Facebook and Youtube pages. 

Text reads "Bringing CRC Learning Home" and "gesher l'kesher- bridge to a connection" in Hebrew. An image of a bridge on a blue background.
Pre-K to 2nd Grade

Gesher l'Kesher Shabbat School

Shabbat School introduces students to the basics of Judaism, the Jewish community, and Jewish holidays. Our teachers engage students with stories, songs and hands on activities. We often hear from parents how excited their students are about coming to "school" on Saturday mornings!

Contact:
Essie at 314-361-3919 x106
or
essie@centralreform.org
Read our FAQ

Mensch Makers Logo
5-years-old to 12-years-old (and siblings)

Mensch Makers

Mensch Makers is a family mitzvah program designed to give families and their children opportunities to participate together in Tikkun Olam projects. We meet monthly on Shabbat or Sunday afternoons.

Each event is coordinated by a different Mensch Makers family, so click here for our Youth Calendar

For more information, email Vera at education@centralreform.org.

Text reads "Bringing CRC Learning Home" and "gesher l'kesher- bridge to a connection" in Hebrew. An image of a bridge on a blue background.
3rd Grade to 6th Grade

Religious School

Religious School students learn Hebrew letters, and gain fluency and reading skills in Hebrew. They study sacred time and space while exploring music from Shabbat Service, the Tanach, history, Jewish values, and social justice issues.

Read our FAQ

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Beginning in 4th Grade

Beit Mitzvah

The Beit Mitzvah Program at CRC is a special and memorable experience for the student, their family and friends, and the whole CRC community. This important Jewish "coming of age" ritual marks a young person’s engagement with the array of Jewish knowledge, communities, ethics, and traditions.

Aligning with CRC’s value of inclusivity, we offer a variety of terms to describe your special day such as Bar Mitzah/Bat Mitzvah, and gender neutral options including: Brit Mitzvah, B-Mitzvah, B’nai Mitzvah, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, and Simchat Mitzvah.

Preparing for a beit mitzvah at CRC is a process, and each young person is supported at every step by CRC's rabbis, staff, educators, and Board. While the beit mitzvah service will take place around age 12-13, most families begin preparing as early as 5th grade.

Copy of teen religious school (1)
7th to 9th Grade

Teen Religious School

In the CRC Teen Religious School Program, students take a well-rounded look at Jewish identity-both as Jewish advocates in the world around us and personally as students. 
   -7th grade students do mitzvot as a class while some students continue studying to become Beit Mitzvah.
    -8th grade students reflect on CRC’s core value of being a Jewish presence in St. Louis City and participate in local community service projects. Students will also travel to Chicago as a class.
   -9th grade students focus on learning what it means to be an advocate, especially a Jewish one, culminating in a unique Washington, D.C. trip.  
Read our FAQ

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10th Grade

Confirmation

Confirmation returns to self-reflection, focusing on real, modern issues that are influenced by our Jewish identity, leading to an unforgettable Jewish New York City trip. The year ends with a Confirmation service held on the second Friday night in May.

Read our FAQ

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High School

Youth Group

CRC’s youth group is open to all high school students in CRC affiliated households. Our youth group aims to hold monthly social events, alternating between a lounge night in our building and a social event somewhere in St. Louis. 

PARTICIPATION OPPORTUNITIES: Attend our social events during the school year. Attend up to 3 conclaves. Hang out in our Youth Lounge. 

Contact: Rabbi Karen at  314-361-3919 x104 

Beit Mitzvah Info & Materials

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What do you want to call your special day?

Aligning with CRC’s value of inclusivity, we offer a variety of terms to describe your special day such as Bar Mitzah/Bat Mitzvah, and gender neutral options including: Brit Mitzvah, B-Mitzvah, B’nai Mitzvah, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, and Simchat Mitzvah.

Check out this wonderful link for more information: 

Becoming a Beit Mitzvah at CRC

4th grade, January after winter break: Beit Mitzvah date sign-up forms mailed.
4th Grade, Spring semester: Beit Mitzvah workshop - receive Binder and Portion Booklet.
5th-6th grade: Student continues to attend Hebrew School and attend some Shabbat services.
6th grade: Begin working with Rabbis on d'var Torah (teaching on student's Torah portion). Family should attend Shabbat morning services together.
6th Grade Workshop, Spring semester: Each student has an individualized prayer/service book (siddur). Begin collecting quotes for your siddur. It is customary to provide the kiddush following a beit mitzvah. It's time to start planning this -- contact elana@centralreform.org for the next steps. Elana will also help you if you are planning to have a beit mitzvah party at CRC.
9 months - 1 year prior to date: First meeting with Rabbi (student and parent/s attend)
9-10 months prior to date: Contact Maxine Weil, maxine@centralreform.org  to start working with a brit mitzvah tutor.
6-9 months prior to date: Select Mitzvah project. CRC's rabbis and staff may be consulted if you need help with project ideas.
2 months before: Becky Nelson Zoole, becky@centralreform.org, will contact you with information about preparing your child's siddur.
1 month before: Email the information for the first draft of your child's siddur to Becky.
3 weeks before: Rehearsal 1.
1 week before: Final rehearsal.
After beit mitzvah: Attend teen programs (7th-12th grades) and chant blessings at High Holy Day services!

Choosing A Mitzvah Project

Tikkun olam - repair of the world - is a core value at CRC, and an important part of having a beit mitzvah is the mitzvah project. This is a project, chosen by the student, which gives him or her an opportunity to "give back" to the community and help someone else. CRC students have chosen a wide range of mitzvah projects,  including making gift bags for children in the hospital, collecting donations for an animal shelter, and bringing a screening of an important film to St. Louis.

We encourage beit mitzvah students and their families to think about the mitzvah project early in the process. Because some mitzvah projects take time to arrange, planning ahead will give you the best opportunity to participate in a project that is meaningful to you.

The CRC rabbis are a great source of ideas and can be consulted when you meet with them.

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Beit Mitzvah Siddur Preparation

One of the unique parts of having a beit mitzvah at CRC is that each student creates their own prayer book, called a siddur, to be used during the service. While the Shabbat prayers remain the same, each student personalizes the book with that week’s Torah and Haftarah portions and their own readings and images.

The steps to create your personal Siddur are:

Windows users: The fonts below belong in the Font folder located in your Control Panel.

CLICK TO DOWNLOAD HEBREW FONTS

1. Double click on the appropriate file below, open, and choose SAVE AS. (Select a folder on your computer.)

Morning Service Siddur

Havdalah Siddur

2. Do you see Hebrew?

If not, repeat the steps above to download and add the Hebrew fonts. (Macs generally will not display the Hebrew fonts; but when sent to CRC, they will appear.) 

If you need any help with your Siddur, contact Becky at 314-361-3919 x102 or becky@centralreform.org

Below are sources for some of the information you will need to make the siddur your own!

1. Scroll down page OR Click link below to obtain your TORAH and HAFTARAH PORTIONS (in Hebrew and English)

TORAH and HAFTARAH PORTIONS

2. Click link below to obtain your HEBREW NAME (in Hebrew)

View a list of Hebrew names from which you may copy and paste into your siddur.

3. Click link below to find your HEBREW BEIT MITZVAH DATE. (Be sure to check the “After sunset” box if it is an havdalah event.)

Find Hebrew Date.

4. Click link below if you have questions about the TRANSLITERATION and/or CAPITALIZATION of Hebrew words.

URJ Transliteration Guidelines

5. Need GRAPHICS/PHOTOS? Try these sites:

Google images

Yahoo! images

Bing images

flickr

Star of David blog

Central Reform Congregation provides you with siddur production services. Our capabilities include: full color covers, editing, formatting, proofing, collage-making, and printing.

Here is our process:

1. For each of the two rehearsals, you will receive 3 proof copies—one for the rabbi, one to keep/share, and one to mark your corrections—plus a three hole punched copy in a binder that you will use during rehearsals and when leading the service.

2. To have adequate time to prepare rehearsal copies, we need your print-ready digital siddur 7-10 days before your first rehearsal. You will have opportunities to make corrections and updates following each rehearsal. However, the siddur you e-mail us should include your welcome letter, all your quotes, a description of the mitzvah project, your thank you page, and all your pictures and graphics. If you believe you will have a problem meeting the deadline, please involve us early!

3. Please prepare the siddur in Microsoft Word. If you prepare your siddur in non-standard fonts, please include the font when e-mailing your siddur. If you want to know how to do this, contact Becky at 314-361-3919 x102 or becky@centralreform.org.

4. If your pictures and graphics aren’t digital and you are unable digitize them, we can scan them here. We also make picture collages. In these cases, please bring in your pictures early.

5. Once you have e-mailed the siddur, all changes should be either marked up in the rehearsal copy or e-mailed as a list. Please do not resend your copy of the siddur with corrections.

6. Remember, per the rabbis’ request, the cover picture cannot be of your child.

7. The cover is in color; pictures and art in the body of the siddur are printed in black and white.

8. Number to print? Figure one book for each invited guest Add 60-65 additional books for other congregants and guests if the beit mitzvah is Saturday morning.

9. To make arrangements, contact Becky at 314-361-3919 x102 or becky@centralreform.org.

Youth Calendar

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