B'nei Mitzvah Preparation
The B’nei Mitzvah Program prepares students with special needs for their bar/bat mitzvah with a combination of individual tutoring, classroom activities and a weekly prayer service. Our onsite reading specialist customizes lessons for each child and our experienced special education teacher plans lessons that teach specific B’nei Mitzvah and Synagogue skills.
The B'nei Mitzvah Preparation Program is for students ages 11-13 years, and meets on Wednesday afternoons from 4:30-6 p.m. at Congregation Mishkan Tefila, 330 Hammond Pond Parkway, Chestnut Hill.
All parents/guardians enrolling a student in a Gateways Jewish Education Program (Sunday Program, B'nei Mitzvah Program, Mitzvah Mensches) for the 2012-2013 school year must fill out our new enrollment forms. We've improved the forms to help us better meet your child's needs. Please click here for forms and instructions.
Click here to download the 2012-2013 class calendar.
- Rachel's Story
On May 5, the Gateways community celebrated the Bat Mitzvah of a very special student. Rachel has brain damage from a stroke when she was a two-year-old. She can't speak or walk, and has uncontrolled seizures. Rachel has attended the Gateways Sunday Program for six years in preparation for her Bat Mitzvah, and though she might not have used words to say, she showed everyone that day how much her Jewish learning meant to her.
- Helena's Story
Helena began preparing for her Bat Mitzvah at age 11, when she enrolled in Gateways' B'nei Mitzvah Program, which supported her special learning needs. But her mother's unexpected passing and a series of circumstances pushed her Bat Mitzvah off repeatedly. Until finally on May 9, thanks to contributions and support from across the community, Helena, age 15, had her big day.
- Ethan's Story
Ethan, who has autism, was only 5 when his parents first brought him through the door of Gateways' Sunday morning Jewish Education Program. Hear from his family and learn how the team at Gateways prepared him to became a bar mitzvah.
- Hannah's Story
Read about the transformative two-year journey that lead Hannah, an honors student who has Asperger Syndrome (a developmental disorder on the autism spectrum), to shine on her Bat Mitzvah day. Her mom says it best: "I saw Hannah grow up before my eyes. Looking at the young woman who, two years ago, refused to participate in class, standing in front of a crowd of close friends and family, reading her Torah portion and chanting her prayers, was a moment that was so full of pride and love, it is something I will carry with me for the rest of my life… Hannah learned what I already knew, that if she can do this, she can do anything else she sets her mind to."