Ohr Kodesh Early Childhood Center (OKECC) is a synagogue-based preschool engaging children, families, and educators on a journey of learning, inspired by the Reggio Emilia philosophy and with a foundation rooted in Jewish values. Through our Judaic curriculum we instill pride in Jewish identity, and through our core values we cultivate a caring community where each individual is accepted for their uniqueness, seen as an equal and active partner within the school, and empowered to be a life-long learner alongside our educators.
We will continue on our journey of providing a school of excellence where our families are nurtured in a community that provides the best practices of Jewish early childhood education and embraces the major principles of Reggio Emilia.
Core Values are traits or qualities that represent OKECC's highest priorities and deeply held beliefs, and are fundamental driving forces. They are guiding principles that define our school's identity. We embrace the following five core values:
• Sense of Belonging: Providing a welcoming place, which respects and embraces each member as a unique individual, and where each individual feels they are a valued part of our community.
• Jewish Identity: Looking through a Jewish lens to all areas of the curriculum, Jewish culture, values, traditions and rituals, and a connection to Israel.
• Reciprocal Dialogue: Engaging in active listening and meaningful exchange between and among educators, children and parents.
• Developmentally Appropriate Practice: Following approach to education grounded in early childhood research that uses best practices to meet children where they are, both as individuals and as part of a group, to foster each child's success.
• Continuity: Identifying and fostering connections over time to build relationships from year to year between all aspects of our community.
Every year OKECC identifies a specific focus to explore at an elevated level of study, and each team of educators seeks to uniquely identify and interweave this intent into their daily curriculum, classroom dynamics, and community interactions. Throughout the year, educators document their observations and explain connections sent in daily emails to parents and via school classroom and hallway displays. In the spring, each team of Educators creates visual representations to communicate what they learned. Families are invited and encouraged to visit the classrooms and be a part of a special day dedicated to this Celebration Of Intent. This year’s school-wide intent is Sense of Belonging.