Academics » Educational Philosophy

Educational Philosophy

Our Approach
BPY’s educational philosophy is guided by our focus on instilling confidence in our students so they are motivated to meet academic challenges and are comfortable taking risks, voicing ideas, and sharing opinions. Students are encouraged, offered support or enrichment based on continual assessment, and are assured that BPY is devoted to helping them succeed.
 
BPY’s commitment to small-group learning enables us to focus on each child’s individual needs and learning styles. Our educational approach emphasizes hands-on and inquiry-based learning experiences to promote problem solving and to stimulate our students to think critically. Our strong BPY community empowers our students by providing an environment that enables them to fully devote themselves to learning, and helps them develop good middot.
 
At BPY, we take a holistic approach to education through integration of limudei kodesh and general studies which is a guiding principle of our curriculum development and implementation. From our earliest grades, concepts taught in limudei kodesh are made more meaningful when applied to the general studies curriculum and vice versa - for instance, a lesson on reading maps supplements a unit about Avraham’s journeys, or a study of weather leads to a discussion of Noach and the flood. We strive to teach a generation of Jewish children to view the world through a single lens which integrates Jewish and secular subjects.
 
The home/school connection is critical to student success.  We view parents as partners in bridging the gap between school and home as a way to educate the whole child. We accomplish this is through a weekly bulletin, weekly school-wide and class-specific newsletters, bi-annual anecdotal reports, picture emails, social media updates, and frequent telephone communication. Parents are encouraged to become active participants in our classrooms, complementing teachers’ lessons by sharing their own knowledge, talents, and traditions.
 
BPY is committed to offering a well-balanced curriculum to our students – in addition to instruction in limudei kodesh and general studies, we also offer a variety of co-curricular and extracurricular programs to enrich their educational experience. We integrate an authentic Hebrew immersion program through the efforts of our shlichim and "bnot sherut." Electives are offered to all middle school students to provide them with unique opportunities to focus on interests that may lie outside the typical academic course load. Physical fitness education is approached with the goal of promoting a healthy lifestyle and fostering self-confidence, self-esteem, age-appropriate athletic skills, and good sportsmanship. 
 
The Arts
Visual arts is an essential part of our students’ growth and development, and students are given frequent opportunities to explore various media and techniques, both in formal art classes as well as in the classrooms.
Music instruction is offered to early childhood and elementary grade students. As part of the music program, students gain an understanding and appreciation for music, while also preparing for presentations and learning songs associated with holidays.
Dramatic arts is offered in fifth grade whereby the students participate in the drama program and are introduced to important theatrical concepts and can become members of the Thespian Society. Students in elementary school and middle school can also choose to take part in the annual school play.

 

Technology

At BPY, technology is used to enhance the educational experience, giving our students access to new and innovative resources and approaches to learning. Students use digital and online educational resources and carefully curated apps to extend and transform their learning, conduct research, create multimedia projects, and practice skills. Close collaboration between our Director of Technology and classroom teachers augments the student experience, and allows technology to be woven into daily learning in a variety of ways. Beginning in early childhood, students are introduced to the world of coding. In grades 1 through 5, iPad and Chromebook carts and stations are used for directed and project-based learning. Students begin to learn the skills needed to use technology as an efficient and meaningful educational tool. In the middle school, a one-to-one program provides every student (and teacher) with his/her own Chromebook to help achieve mastery of the Google suite and advanced use of the devices. 

All BPY classrooms, beginning in kindergarten, are equipped with classroom display and/or interactive technology to meet the needs of the modern classroom. This includes smart boards, interactive LCDs and general LCDs.

 

Science

BPY’s science program aims to nurture and broaden the curiosity inherent in every child. Encompassing Grades 1-8, our science program facilitates a deeper awareness of the world and provides students with the opportunity to engage in inquiry-based, hands-on STEM learning. BPY has designed a 1-8 science curriculum that is in alignment with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

BPY students actively engage in the practice of inquiry and engineering design as they create scientific meaning through doing. Using the stream and wood ecosystem adjacent to school, the plethora of animals in the Discovery Room, or the wet lab in the middle school, student curiosity is tapped into and they are motivated to figure out how the natural world works (science) and how to design solutions to problems (engineering). Students build upon their skills year to year in using the scientific method as they plan and carry out investigations, solve problems, create models, analyze and interpret data, construct explanations, and design solutions. To facilitate this work, students are trained to use age-appropriate resources, lab tools and technology cooperatively and independently. In addition, they construct detailed models of phenomena and gain the ability to listen to and critique the explanations of others.

Complementing the explorative component of science class is an emphasis on fostering scientific literacy. Throughout the grades, students are supported in developing the ability to independently read scientific texts and to communicate scientific content with precision and detail. At BPY, we aim to raise students who are science citizens, able to discern the ways that science is implicit in so many factors of our world.