(May 24, 2022) Hershorin Schiff Community Day School (CDS) recently welcomed Rinat Heiman as its new Hebrew and Judaic studies instructor. Heiman had previously served in this position at Temple Sinai from 1994 to 2013 and, more recently, as a private bar and bat mitzvah teacher. Beginning as early as 14 months old, all students at CDS are offered classes in both Hebrew and cultural Jewish studies.
Heiman is passionate about these studies. She knows that their lessons make a profound difference in students’ lives. As she sees it, these studies are far more than academic knowledge for isolated individuals. They’re teachings in wisdom, which connect each individual to a greater community.
“Teaching Hebrew and Judaic studies is important because it builds a bridge of understanding and respect for one another,” says Heiman. “I believe understanding where people come from is vital for communication and that the vibrant culture and traditions associated with Judaism have the power to enrich the lives of every student. Furthermore, learning another language such as Hebrew has the power to improve a student’s attitude towards different cultures, and has the capacity to improve verbal skills, memory retention, and inspire creativity.”
Heiman adds that, “The values of Judaism can be applied in everyday life, regardless of one’s faith or beliefs. I would also love to encourage students to discover and learn the Hebrew language through the lens of music and nature. These are just a few of the many things I’m excited to explore!”
Dan Ceaser, Community Day’s head of school, shares her sense of excitement.
“We’re so thrilled that Ms. Heiman will be joining our team this fall,” he says. “She has years of classroom experience working with young students. She’s made a choice to bring her expertise to our classrooms — and we’re deeply honored.”
Ceaser adds that Heiman’s commitment to multicultural and ecumenical learning perfectly fits Community Day School’s core values.
“We’re committed to providing our students an understanding of world religions,” he says. “It’s not abstract knowledge — it’s deeply rooted in respect for the diversity of faith and culture. Ms. Heiman shares that sense of respect. She’s celebrated throughout the community for her passion and dedication. People of vastly different identities and faiths respect Ms. Heiman. I think it’s because they know she respects them.”
The timing of Heiman’s arrival couldn’t be better. Community Day School now offers Hebrew as a language choice for any student wishing to participate. Starting at the upper elementary level, CDS students can also elect to take Jewish studies or comparative world religion. The lessons students will learn in their lives are the foundation of Ms. Heiman’s life. She lives that truth — and lives to teach it.
Heiman adds that she can’t wait to meet Community Day School’s students. She’s looking forward to creating an education plan for every CDS student — a personalized plan based on each individual’s unique talents, interests and personality. “As a teacher, I see it as my responsibility to motivate students to explore cooperative and inquiry-based learning,” she says. “I love engaging students through nature, active learning, and imagination. I intend to make Hebrew and Judaic studies a joyful and memorable experience for everyone in the classroom.”
Community Day School opened its new campus, with record enrollment, on August 16, 2021. To learn more about Community Day School, visit communityday.org or call (941) 552-2770.
About Community Day School
The mission of the Hershorin Schiff Community Day School, which serves students in preschool through eighth grade, is to impact the world by creating a community where children of all faiths demonstrate integrity, academic excellence, and a desire to improve the world. Community Day offers a rigorous, project-based academic program in a diverse and vibrant learning environment rooted in the Jewish values of honesty, integrity, mutual trust and respect. For more information, visit the website at communityday.org or call (941) 552-2770.