Every year at RPRY graduation, each graduating eighth grader is given an opportunity to speak and share. Remarkably, every year the same themes are expressed: The love, warmth and care they received; how their teachers supported them in developing a trusting relationship with Hashem; how they felt comfortable exploring their Torah learning; appreciation for the strength of their academics; that while the intellectual rigor was stimulating, it was always meaningful and not “a pressure cooker.” Finally, over and over again, they remind us of the bonding with their peers and teachers, creating friendships that often last throughout their lives. This warmth is what defines our ruach-filled learning climate at RPRY. Our unique educational model is the framework that facilitates this atmosphere.
At RPRY, we believe that learning is a social transaction facilitated by expert teachers. A school creates a warm, loving and safe environment which allows for a child’s whole development. Emotional management is required for deep learning. The harnessing of positive emotions such as joy, passion and curiosity and negative emotions such as confusion, stress and disappointment to fuel learning is essential to genuine success. Setting goals, self-monitoring and self-reflecting are skills that can be modeled and practiced through hands-on and joyous experiences. Students can wrestle with challenges, make mistakes, regroup and try again.
Classroom teachers are supported in this by our groundbreaking Think Tank model. They collaborate with our specialists, ranging from engineering/robotics, advanced mathematics, reading intervention, PE, music, art, keyboarding, coding or chesed programs, to ignite the spark in every child. Our specialists work with both our gifted students as well as our students that require more support. This model promotes a zest for deep learning that is both purposeful and experiential.
Finally, this process is not possible without a collaborative relationship with parents. Children learn best when their parents and schools have a trusting relationship and work together. We encourage parents to partner with us to provide the space for their children to truly step into their greatness. As parents and educators, our children are lent to us by Hashem and it is our responsibility to give them the tools to have a genuine, trusting relationship with Hashem. We model and practice this with our children by encouraging healthy, prosocial classrooms, building a schoolwide community and practicing physical and emotional regulation skills.
So, if you are asking, “What qualities should I look for in a school?” and your answer includes a school that is warm, nurturing, soul-stirring, rigorous, fun, experiential and connected to Hashem—then exploring an RPRY education is for you.