Critical Minds, Compassionate Hearts
Academics
Middle School

Electives

Electives offer Middle Schoolers a time to invest in their own creativity and interests within the scope of the school day. Electives reflect a wide range of student passions, running the gamut from quiz bowl to walking in the woods to poetry writing to band. Students take 6 electives each year, allowing them to engage in multiple pursuits.

Some popular electives include:

Jewish Coalition for Literacy

Rashi partners with Jewish Coalition for Literacy to train Middle School students to be reading coaches for emerging readers, pairing Rashi students with a kindergarten reading buddy at a Dedham public school. Each week, the Rashi students travel to the Dedham school to read with their buddy and in the process, develop a one-on-one relationship with their assigned kindergartener. While the focus is on reading, the bond that the two share is just as important.

Kesem Israeli Dance Troupe

Students who dance with Kesem develop dance skills and learn an original Israeli dance choreographed by our award-winning Israeli dance teacher. Students perform in various venues throughout the year, culminating in the Israeli Dance Festival at MIT.

State Drama Festival

Students in this elective select, rehearse, and perform a 40-minute play at the Massachusetts Middle School State Drama Festival. Under the direction of Rashi’s theater and theater tech instructors, the group creates all aspects of the final performance including staging, costumes, scenery, props, and lighting.

Art

Art electives offer students the opportunity to focus on a specific material or a genre of art. Past electives have included Inspired by Wire, Art from the Hardware Store, Stop-Motion Animation, Destroy to Create, Introduction to Crochet, and Sewing Pajamas.

Making Memories

Rashi's Making Memories program is an elective in our Middle School that brings together our students with the memory unit at NewBridge on the Charles. The interactions between students and residents are remarkable and the effect of their visit stays visible in residents throughout the day.

Facing History and Ourselves

Rashi partners with Facing History and Ourselves, a non-profit organization that combats racism, anti-Semitism, and prejudice to provide a variety of programming for Rashi students. In a recent program, Rashi students studied  a Pirkei Avot-inspired curriculum with students at the Epiphany school, a tuition-free independent school for children of economically disadvantaged Boston families. The curriculum combined personal reflection, interaction, and study of historical events to enable the students to more deeply understand themselves, each other, and their place in the world. By the end of the program, students were empowered to recognize not only when and how injustice can exist but the reality that they have the power to act against it.