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Jewish Primary Day School of the Nations Capital

6045 16th Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20011

(202) 291-5737


Philosophy & Approach

Day in the Life

General School Mission

"The Jewish Primary Day School is committed to a program that emphasizes:

Critical Thinking Skills: In both general and Judaic studies, we challenge students to reason, question and analyze, and provide opportunities for independent thinking and creative expression.

Active Learning: We recognize that children are naturally curious and eager to learn. The Jewish Primary Day School fosters intellectual, religious and moral growth through active learning experiences. Our program provides children with developmentally appropriate opportunities for both experiential learning and direct instruction. The school's Washington location provides unique possibilities for learning outside the classroom.

Individualization: Our small class size allows teachers to devote ample attention to each child, addressing individual styles and rates of learning within the classroom. The school seeks to challenge each child in an appropriate manner. We see the school as a community of learners in which each child is recognized for his or her strengths and encouraged to reach his or her potential.

General Studies: We recognize that for children to develop as learners and thinkers, they must acquire a broad base both of skills and of core knowledge. Our General Studies program includes written and spoken English, science, math, social studies, physical education, and the arts. We encourage students to make connections between their studies and their life experience.

Judaic Studies: Our Judaics program includes written and spoken Hebrew; Bible with commentary;
prayer, laws and customs; ethics and values; history; and the geography of Israel and its neighbors. Children study texts in the original language, with discussion in Hebrew as well as English. We encourage students to explore how classic Jewish sources relate to daily, modern life.

Curricular Integration: We are committed to providing an integrated curriculum that emphasizes the ways in which all areas of study, both secular and Judaic, fit together into a comprehensible whole.

Excellence in Teaching: Because we recognize the profound impact of teachers on the lives of children, our staff is made up of professionals who are talented, devoted, and excited about their work. We search for those special individuals who possess both strong formal credentials and the ability to inspire each child, drawing out the very best that each can do.

Jewish Living: At the heart of the school is a commitment to Jewish living. Each day begins with prayer, and Jewish ethical teachings inform all aspects of school life. Kashrut and Jewish holy days are observed. We teach that there are many ways to observe, and emphasize respect for practices which may differ from those observed at school. The Jewish Primary Day School seeks to foster in students an identification with the land and people of Israel.

Our School Community: All members of our school community are expected to treat each other with derech eretz -- consideration and respect. We emphasize the positive value of the diverse backgrounds of our students and teachers. Each is a valued member of our school and welcome among K'lal Yisrael -- the Jewish people.

Our Greater Community: We foster social consciousness and a sense of responsibility for tikkun olam -- improving the world. As they participate in activities such as bringing gifts to homebound elders at Purim or collecting warm clothing for Washington neighbors in need, our students practice acts of Tzedakah and gemilut chasadim -- charity and kindness -- within the Jewish community and the community at large. learning."

excerpted from the school's website