Jewish Life & Learning
Tefillah (Jewish prayer) infused with mindfulness is core to the life of our school, and we devote time and space to the spiritual growth of our students. CDS graduates are skilled at participating in and leading daily, Shabbat, and festival prayer services and family celebrations, and they establish meaningful and lifelong connections with those experiences.
Chagim (Shabbat and Holidays)
CDS follows the rhythms of the Jewish calendar. Students shake the lulav and etrog in the Sukkah. They wear costumes on Purim and learn to read Megillah. They study the Haggadah on Pesach. They observe Yom HaZikaron with gratitude and solemnity. And they celebrate Yom Ha'Atzmaut with Israeli song and dance.
Ivrit (Hebrew Language)
Research supports the powerful impact of learning two languages on a child's cognitive development. Our immersive and engaging Hebrew language program connects students in every grade with their Jewish heritage and prepares them to communicate and work in our 21st-century world.
View our Hebrew curriculum
Developing an enduring connection to the land of Israel is an integral part of a CDS education. Many Hebrew and Jewish Studies faculty at CDS are Israeli, and we are fortunate each year to welcome Shinshinim (Israeli youth emissaries) who share their love and knowledge of Hebrew language and Israeli culture. As their culminating experience, the 8th Grade travels to Israel for two weeks.
Facing History & Ourselves
CDS is proud to be the singular Partner School in the Facing History and Ourselves’ Innovative Schools Network in western Pennsylvania in recognition of the school’s leadership in social justice, human behavior, and Holocaust education. Facing History teaching strategies and lessons are integrated throughout the school in history, language arts, library, and service-learning opportunities.
At CDS, we study the Tanakh and other ancient Jewish texts and the ideas of the Rabbinic tradition. The deep learning inspired by our Rabbinics curriculum grows our students' spiritual and academic curiosity and helps them become independent thinkers and problem-solvers.
Shinshinim at CDS
Community Day School is thrilled to welcome to our campus four Shinshinim, 18-year-old Israeli emissaries who defer Israeli army service for one year to volunteer in Pittsburgh. The term derives from shinim shinshin, the Hebrew acronym for shenat sherut, meaning “year of service.” In this role, these teens work to connect our students and their families to Israel and Israeli culture.