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School Visits

School Visits

Please Note:

Through the work of the School Visits Team, our Synagogue fulfils the role of an educational resource to the outside world. It does this by playing host to children and their teachers drawn from all over South London and the southern Home Counties providing them with a basic understanding of Jewish religious worship.

Last year more than 1,400 children came to the Synagogue in a total of 53 school or educational visits.

Each visit lasts about an hour and a half. A typical visit would almost always include a general introduction, undressing and dressing a Sefer Torah (the scroll), and then perhaps a story is read, or artefacts are displayed and discussed, or we decorate Kippot and bookmarks, show and discuss the Shabbat Table, play Hanukkah games, explain basic Hebrew, Holy Books, festivals, explain how the Sefer Torah is written, and even explain a Passover meal in a demonstration Seder.

The team try to match the visit to the age and expectations of the visitors. For instance, last year we hosted visits for 7 – 14 year old children (please note – we only start at year 3 as it really doesn’t work well with children from year 2 and under) as well as trainee religious education teachers from Roehampton University and a group of Muslim ladies from the Ahmadiyya Mosque in Southfields. A completely different approach is required in each instance.

The School Visits Team and the Council feel these visits to the Synagogue are amongst the most important work the community does. They introduce children and accompanying adults to “living Judaism”, helping to break down fear and prejudice by fostering understanding and good relations with that part of the non-Jewish world the Synagogue can reach.

To support this work, we have created a Teachers’ Resources page on this part of our website.  Simply click on the link here or select the link.

If you are considering organising a visit or want to know more, contact the team by clicking here or contact the office by phone. To get the office contact details click here.

If you are already planning a visit please review our Pre-Visit Information for Schools sheet.  You can download a PDF copy by clicking here (Pre-Visit Information for Schools) and saving it to your computer or device.