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Department links and descriptions

ENGINEERING ARTS

Student Engineering Project - Go-Kart Test 1

English

The English Department focuses on developing critical thinking, writing, and communication skills using literary texts as the focus.  Classes utilize discussion to stimulate deeper engagement with the texts and students are asked to write in a variety of modes in response to what they read.  The department has an overall four-year writing goal to develop skills through the use of persuasive, analytical, and creative writing assignments.  The multi-step writing process emphasizes that revision is just as important as initial conception of ideas and students learn how to improve the fluidity and clarity of their writing.  Along with these written assignments, the classes engage with a variety of alternative assessments that encourage students to think about the texts from different angles, including creative pieces that are inspired by the literature they read.

History

The History Department at Kehillah Jewish High School has a strong focus on critical thinking. To us, history is not a list of material to be memorized; it is a constructed narrative of perspectives that must be analyzed in order to tell a larger story of trends over time. To accomplish this, we strengthen the skill of document analysis with a particular focus on perspective.

The students practice cross-cultural comparisons, historical contextualization, cause and effect explanation, and periodization through various activities, assignments, inter-departmental opportunities, and role-playing simulations. In turn, the students communicate their understanding of the past through multiple modes of assessment: written, verbal, and creative. It is the goal of the History Department that Kehillah students are able to construct their understanding not only of the past but of their present and future as well.

Jewish Studies

The Kehillah Jewish Studies Department is innovative and looks to engage students in intellectual, academic, spiritual, and social ways. At Kehillah, the Jewish Studies department particularly draws on the 3000 years of tradition, lore, and wisdom, which it combines with best of modern pedagogy.

The Jewish Studies department prepares Kehillah students to be more balanced citizens of the world.

MATH

Through discovery activities and more formal instruction, the mathematics department at Kehillah strives to instill in students a deep conceptual understanding of the topics, with an emphasis on critical thinking and applications of the material, all resting on a solid mastery of the techniques and processes necessary to solve the problems encountered.

Students are held responsible for knowing not just how to do a particular problem or technique, but also why it works, and when to employ a particular approach, and must be able to explain and justify the steps taken to arrive at a particular solution. Creative strategies, logic, synthesis and analysis are stressed. Technology, particularly graphing calculators, is used when appropriate.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Physical education at Kehillah is flexible and customized. Students are required to complete a year of physical education in order to graduate. The requirement can be met by taking on of Kehillah’s P.E. courses, such as physical conditioning (in the state-of-the-art Oshman Family JCC gym), or by participating in one of Kehillah’s competitive sports teams, or by engaging in a regular program of activity for one year or the equivalent.  Students have met this requirement through individual dance, workout, rock climbing and other programs.

Physical fitness for Kehillah students is enhanced beginning this year with a complimentary student membership in the JCC fitness center across the street from campus.

SCIENCE

The science department at Kehillah focuses on providing opportunities for students to build their knowledge through a mix of analytical and computational problems as well as inquiry-based lab work. The department places a strong emphasis on providing consistent training in critical thinking as the foundation of the scientific method of problem-solving. As students progress through the curriculum, they are challenged to develop their own techniques to experimentally answer real-world questions, and they will learn how to clearly convey their findings to the community.

VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS

Kehillah offers inspiring and challenging curricula in the visual and performing arts including; music, studio art, digital art, and drama. Each class is crafted specifically to help students forge enduring habits of lifelong learning, love of the arts, and personal creative expression. Courses are tailored to individual needs and focus on learning through hands-on experience.

One year of visual or performing arts is required for graduation, but students are welcome to take multiple classes as electives. The course guides below delineate the current course offerings in each of the visual and performing arts.

WORLD LANGUAGES

The World Languages department at Kehillah provides students with a rich variety of course offerings in four different languages: French, Hebrew, Spanish and Latin. Each student at Kehillah is required to take two consecutive years of a foreign language; three years or more of study are strongly encouraged.

All our language courses provide students with a solid academic foundation in the grammar and syntax of the target language while simultaneously focusing on the four language skills: reading, writing, listening comprehension and speaking. These skills are practiced and reinforced through a variety of in-class activities and projects (including interviews, exposure to French, Spanish, or Israeli newspapers and television programming, presentations, skits, story-telling, listening to music, and working with interactive online resources, to name just a few). Such activities are designed to engage as many different learning styles as possible and also to encourage students toward their ultimate goal of being able to communicate comfortably with native speakers.

In addition, our World Language courses introduce students to different cultural and historical aspects of the various communities which speak each language. Courses routinely include units on material culture (art and architecture, e.g.) and discussion of current events. Our students are thus challenged and encouraged to take what they learn from their language studies and apply it to the culturally and linguistically diverse world beyond the classroom walls.

All Kehillah students are required to take two years of the same language in order to graduate. Three consecutive years of the same language is strongly recommended and required by many colleges and universities.