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Teen Learning and Engagement

The Book of Proverbs (22:6) says “educate youth according to their needs, and even when they are older, they will not stray.” Our goal is to help all 8-12 graders at Adat Shalom find their paths.

Better 2 Serve 2022-2023 / 8th through 12th graders

We are looking forward to meeting every other Sunday after religious school for this brand new service learning program. Teens will build understanding of issues facing older members of the Jewish community and develop and implement a project to help solve this issue! Teens who join complete the program will earn significant volunteer hours, a credential for their college applications, and an opportunity to win an essay contest based on their experiences. Registration information coming soon.

Dual Enrollment Hebrew Program

Earn high school and college credit simultaneously by taking Hebrew on Sunday evenings (5:30 to 7 p.m.). This fully accredited program will give you your high school language credits as well as transferable college credits. Oakland county high schools contribute to some of the cost of tuition each semester, and limited additional scholarship is available.

Our classes will take place via Zoom using Eastern Michigan University’s Canvas platform. Registration closes in mid-August; if your rising 9th-12th grader is interested in taking Hebrew next year, please check out all the information at

Earn up to 1.0 high school and 6 college credits per year. Contact Dr. Melissa Ser for more information, or call 248.626.2153.

Madrichim Teen Leadership Program

Be a classroom assistant, and learn what it means to become a Jewish leader through our program of training and practical application. You will be assigned to a classroom or a student as a buddy, and take part in regular training during school hours. Contact Jodi Gross for more information on applying to become a madrich/a. Madrichim may work on Sundays and/or Wednesdays. Eighth graders may receive volunteer hours; high schoolers may opt for volunteer hours, a stipend, or a combination of the two. Space is limited. This program is a blend of formal training and real-life experience and is supervised by both Jodi Gross and Melissa Ser.

Madrichim Leadership Training 

Teens in grades 8-12 participate in Ikar / Core Learning with their assigned classes and take part in ongoing training workshops.

Teen Volunteer Corps

Service-learning at its finest. Teens develop programming and put it into action through social action. Projects are approximately twice monthly, and teens meet regularly with Jodi Gross to plan and learn. The Teen Volunteer Corps puts Jewish values into everyday life and empowers teens to be involved and impact the Jewish community and Metro Detroit. A teen leadership board creates, recruits volunteers, and leads projects. Teen Volunteer Corps combines learning with direct hands-on involvement focused on:

  • Jewish social and ethical issues
  • Social Action
  • Volunteering
  • Friendship & Fun
  • Expanded Horizons

Other volunteer opportunities include Tech Connect, being a teen madrich (classroom assistant), and community-wide events such as J-Serve and PeerCorps.

Jewish Teen Travel 

Thanks to a generous donor family, a 3-night, 4-day trip to another part of the country provides teens worthwhile opportunities to explore their Jewish identity and to foster their own relationships with one another and Adat Shalom’s professional leadership. In partnership with Nosh & Drash, participants attend a learning series prior to and following the trip. This series prepares teens for the trip and provides them opportunities to gather and debrief after the trip. In 2016-2017, 27 teens attended the trip to the Paper Clips Project in Whitwell, Tennessee. In 2017-2018, 27 teens attended the trip to Philadelphia. In 2018-2019, teens traveled to New York City. In 2019-2020, teens traveled to Atlanta. Our next trip has not yet been scheduled, but we will let you know when it is!

General Teen Travel Goals:  

  • To engage in meaningful travel experiences, led by clergy and educators, that are rooted in Jewish tradition, history and values.
  • To have opportunities to meet and build relationships with teens from Adat Shalom and maintain those relationships long after the trip.
  • To meet and interact with Jewish teens living in other cities.
  • To empower teens with the knowledge that one person or one act can make a difference.