Portland Jewish Academy is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland and is proud of our partnership with them in strengthening our local Jewish community as well as the global community.


Featured Blog Post

Family Style Dining
By Angela Healy

We are excited to announce that our early childhood classrooms will be beginning a new initiative. The new program is often referred to as “Family Style Dining” and will begin during snack times in some of our classrooms. Our pilot program will be introduced in one classroom from each age group. We hope after a successful pilot program that we will introduce this program to all classrooms...

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Past Blogs

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
By Merrill Hendin

As we prepare to work more deeply in the area of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), I look back at the Diversity Statement our community drafted a few years ago when we began to embark more seriously on this work. We have always (PJA) prided ourselves on being a community Jewish day school that welcomes all.

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Middle School Tefillah (prayer)
By Amy Katz

Every school wants their tefillah program to be meaningful, relevant and joyful across the grade levels. We all hope our students will have the skills they need to participate actively in tefillah, but we also want them to relate to, understand, and connect to the words they are saying. 

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Loose Parts in a Jewish Curriculum
By Kim Krikorian

Using “loose parts” is one way that young children express languages. Loose parts include both natural and manufactured materials that can be moved, combined, and taken apart in a variety of ways. There are an abundance of natural and manufactured materials for children to play with and manipulate.

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What’s Jewish about Thanksgiving?
By Steve Albert

I suspect that Thanksgiving was my grandmother’s favorite holiday, and I’ve often wondered about the special appeal of Thanksgiving to my Jewishly observant grandmother. What, if anything, might be Jewish about Thanksgiving?

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Professional Development and Afterschool
By Charlotte Gund and Natalie Haskins

In the PJA Afterschool Department, we work diligently to go above and beyond our primary goal of providing safe spaces for youth during their out-of-school time. Our programs give us access to more than 300 children for up to 23 hours a week...

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Admission Season Begins
By Sarah Glass

The leaves on the trees are changing colors. The weather is turning crisp and cool and rainy. Classrooms have established their routines and students are fully immersed in their learning. These are all indications that we are ready to ramp up our admission season for the next school year! 

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Finding our Mishkan
By Amy Katz

One of my favorite parts of Torah to teach is the construction of the mishkan, the  sacred gathering space the Israelites built in the wilderness to worship God. Once the construction of the mishkan was complete, we read in Exodus 40:54 “The presence of God filled the tabernacle.”

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By Merrill Hendin

Eighteen is a special and significant number in Judaism. The Hebrew word for Life- Chai- has the numerical value of 18 (ask me about Gematria some time! It is fascinating). We celebrate the number 18 and its meaning in many significant ways in Jewish life. Have you noticed how many of us make donations to our favorite causes in denominations of 18? 

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Another New Year
By Steve Albert

Happy New Year! The start of the new school year is always one of the most exciting times of year for me. Even after decades of attending and working in schools, I get just as excited about the first day of school as I did as a little kid...

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