The Tent

The Tent is a Jewish learning community for Greater Boston teens at Temple Israel of Boston. The Tent connects teens with diverse voices to strengthen them as learners, thinkers, and young American Jews.

The Tent meets on Monday nights, September through May, with engaging classes, holiday events, and social experiences. The year is split into three trimesters, each with new and exciting course options. Class offerings are based on themes and issues suggested by teens and are taught by excellent local educators from across the Jewish community. Classes are all multi-grade, and designed to accommodate a wide range of educational modalities with differentiated instruction.

8th Grade at The Tent

All 8th graders begin their journey with Our Whole Lives (OWL), an innovative approach to Jewish social/emotional values-based learning. As part of their first year, students and staff spend a weekend in New York City to bond as a cohort and explore the history of American Judaism.

Teen Travel

To truly understand our Judaism and our values we must experience the world together. With the Tent, teens have a chance to travel by cohort to learn about places around the country and the world. 

  • In 8th grade, students travel to New York City for an immersive immigration experience.
  • In 9th grade, students travel to Washington, D.C. for the Reform Action Center’s L’taken Seminar, to learn how to lobby their elected leaders for important causes. 
  • In 10th grade, teens travel together to Alabama for a deep dive exploration of our country’s history of slavery, racism, and civil rights activism. 
  • In 11th and 12th grades, teens have the opportunity to learn deeply about Israel by participating in the Boston/Haifa connection that features a ten day trip to Israel and an exchange with our peer community in Haifa, Kiryat Hayyim.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to be a Reform Jew or belong to a synagogue to participate?

No! The Tent is an inclusive community. Our students and staff represent a great variety of backgrounds and affiliations, and our exploration of Jewish tradition, continuity, and identity are relevant and accessible to all our students, and are not specifically representative of any formal Jewish movement of organization.

I have a Fall/Winter/Spring sport. Is it ok if I only come for part of the year?

Of course! We have a trimester schedule for exactly this reason. Teens are welcome to sign up for one, two, or all three trimesters and we are always flexible as plans change.

I have a lot of homework; can I come for only one hour?

Absolutely! We understand that some nights, it is just not possible to get all of your homeworks done AND attend the Tent. We also offer the library as a space for teens to do their homework instead of going to class. This way, teens are able to get their work done while still being in the building and feeling like part of the Tent community.

Can I bring my friends?

YES! Any and all teens grades 8-12 who are interested in learning more about Judaism are always welcome at our program. Even if you just want to try it out for a night or two, we look forward to welcoming you.