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Hebrew School/Tichon at Ohev

Read Weekly Chai Lites from our Education Director.


A warm welcome to Hebrew School and Tichon (middle/high school) at Ohev! 

We invite prospective families/students to learn more about our inclusive synagogue and school community.

Call 215-322-9597 or email bglickman@ohev.org for more information!


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Our vision:  The Ohev Shalom Hebrew School seeks to contribute to the formation of a positive Jewish identity within each child through imparting Jewish values, knowledge and skills while fostering a love of Israel and the Jewish people. The Hebrew School comprises a learning community that strives to be inclusive, warm, and affirming.


  • Our supplementary Hebrew/Religious School program provides Jewish education for children in prekindergarten through tenth grade.
  • The course of study offered delivers interactive, academic and experiential knowledge of Jewish tradition, culture, prayer, history and Torah.
  • Curriculum is designed to develop fluency in reading Hebrew, comfort and familiarity with the Siddur (prayer book), Jewish liturgy, and a basic understanding of prayers.


  • Experiential, developmentally appropriate Sunday program for PreGan (Preschool/PreKindergarten), Gan (Kindergarten), Kesher (First Grade) and Mechina (Second Grade).  The classes meet for two and a half hours on Sunday mornings.
  • The four-year Hebrew School program (Third through Sixth Grades) is open to the children of Ohev Shalom members. Students attend two days a week (Wednesday afternoon and Sunday morning) for a total of 5 hours.
  • Tichon at Ohev, our Hebrew Middle/High program, for 7th, 8th and 9th grade meets once a week, usually on Wednesday evenings for 2 hours and includes snacks!  Tichon 7th grade is required for BMitzvah.
  • Occasional trips on Sunday as well as other holiday programming may fall on a different weekday.
  • Confirmation for 10th grade meets with Rabbi Perlstein and Cantor Ocanto-Romo on Wednesday evenings.


  • Supplements and reinforces classroom learning.
  • Experiential and meaningful.
  • Encourages participation and involvement in the Jewish community.
  • Specials including music and trope with Cantor Annelise Ocanto-Romo, and library plus other featured programs.
  • Featured programs include Anti-Defamation League, museum and Israel programming, petting zoo, Art in the Pod, and many others.
  • The entire synagogue visits the Jewish Relief Agency warehouse in Philadelphia to pack and distribute food for those in need.


  • Based on the spiral curricular concept in which students visit similar areas of study each school year but on an increasingly sophisticated and theme based level.
  • Our goal is to continually challenge our students to understand concepts more deeply; we facilitate their religious and spiritual growth and development, and share with them the joy and excitement of Jewish living.



  • Students entering Aleph (3rd Grade class) begin a more intensive course of study, approximately half of which is dedicated to learning how to read, decode and pray in Hebrew.
  • Once Hebrew decoding is introduced, the focus turns to familiarization of the Friday night and Shabbat morning services.
  • Basic prayer themes, key words and chants associated with each prayer are learned.
  • The meanings of words and prayer are evaluated and shared.
  • The long-term goal of our Hebrew/Tefillah (prayer) curriculum is to enable our students to walk into any Conservative synagogue and find the place in the Siddur (prayer book) during a service.
  • In addition to the Friday night and Shabbat morning services, students study some other prayers associated with holidays, life cycle events, and home rituals. 
  • Hebrew Through Movement, a total physical response approach to learning the Hebrew language is used with our younger classes.


Gesher Room Mission Statement:  To engage and support all students at their levels as they demonstrate basic Hebrew decoding/reading skills including Hebrew letter, vowel recognition and prayer (t’fillah) skills.

An interactive multi-sensory approach engaging students to achieve success.
When an IEP or 504 Plan is shared, a specially designed program will be implemented.

Skills taught via Gesher Room
Hebrew letter identification and corresponding sounds.  Hebrew vowel identification and corresponding sounds.
Identifying and reading Hebrew letters that look alike. Identifying and reading Hebrew letters and vowels that sound alike. Identifying and reading 5 Final Hebrew letters. Reading multisyllabic words with accuracy and fluency.
Introduction of common prayer/T’filah words.

Our Bmitzvah program usually begins in 6th grade and continues through the end of 7th grade. Our unique program includes Hebrew School/Tichon, Moving Traditions Workshops, BMitzvah training with Cantor Annelise, a D’var Torah Workshop with Rabbi, hessed project, service sign up and more.  Tichon 7th grade attendance post Bmitzvah is expected.

Click on the link below to access Cantor Annelise’s T’fillah recordings!


Tichon at Ohev Logo


  • An interactive, experiential Hebrew Middle/High School program which is geared towards students in 7th through 10th grades.  Special programs and field trips make Judaism experiential for our teens.  Our 7th grade curriculum includes also Holocaust studies through a Jewish perspective and a trip to the National Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC.
  • Full year 7th grade attendance required for BMitzvah.  Effective July 1, 2021 if a student’s BMitzah occurs during the second half of 8th grade, Tichon 8th grade attendance is required. 
  • Meets Wednesday evenings from 6:30-8:30PM and includes plentiful snacks.  Occasional classes or trips may take place on Sunday or another weekday.
  • Ohev Shalom 10th graders in the Confirmation Class, attend a weekly session with Rabbi Perlstein and Cantor Ocanto-Romo on Wednesday evenings and occasionally participate in Tichon special programs.


The Hebrew School and Tichon faculties consists of:

  • Knowledgeable, experienced and passionate teachers who engage the students in enjoyable and enriching learning experiences, while strengthening relationships throughout our community.
  • Teachers who know how to make Judaism come alive in the classroom and connect with their students to provide meaningful learning experiences.
  • Teen assistants, madrichim, who are knowledgeable and passionate about Judaism and are role models for students.
  • Ohev Shalom is committed to providing a high quality, experiential and meaningful Jewish education in a warm and nurturing environment.


Shari Sabath (Morah Shari) have been involved with Jewish education since she was a teenager. She continued her journey during college teaching religious school and leading services. That was when she realized that she wanted to make Jewish Education to be a career since it had already been her calling. After earning her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Miami, she studied at American Jewish University (formerly the University of Judaism) earning her Master’s Degree in Education and Baccalaureate of Hebrew Literature

After graduation, Morah Shari worked in Jewish Day Schools and afternoon synagogue schools as a teacher and administrator. Recently, Morah Shari was part of the first cohort of the Senior Educators Learning Fellows at Pardes Institute of Jewish Learning in Israel where she was able to increase her knowledge of Jewish topics and learn about resources available to enhance the Jewish experience of congregations in the US.

Morah Shari loves working with students and their families on being Jewish in their way and is looking forward to getting to know all the students and their families.

Mira Brown, PreGan PreKindergarten

Mira has been a Hebrew School teacher for 33 years, teaching the same 5 year old class for 26
years straight. She started out assisting in a Sunday School program and in recent years, taught
Aleph and Bet. She also works as a building substitute teacher in an elementary school. She
enjoys swimming, baking, playing the piano and volunteering at an animal shelter. She is
looking forward to teaching at Ohev Shalom, where she was a member of USY.

Joyce Most, PreGan Assistant Teacher

Ohev Shalom has been a part of her life for at least 34 years now! First a preschool mom, then a congregant, Hebrew School (HS)/ preschool mom and assistant teacher, HS teacher, and for the past few years back to assisting the teacher in the Pre-Gan class. Needless to say, Morah Joyce answers to both “Miss” or “Morah” Joyce! Raised and schooled in New England, she accredits most of my Judaic education from ten years of attending the Yeshiva of Hartford. Nowadays she stills works as an assistant teacher in a local preschool, babysit, and try to juggle getting together and keeping in touch with friends and family, especially her three daughters, and five grandchildren, and spending many Sunday mornings in Pre-Gan!

Bari Jacobson, Gan Kindergarten/1st grade. grew up in Springfield Township, Montgomery County, where my family has been active in their synagogue for over 40 years. I was Bat Mitzvah and confirmed there and then continued my Jewish education at Gratz Hebrew High School. My husband and I moved to Holland, Bucks County 6 years ago. We have two beautiful children, Dylan & Ryan. I hold a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education and an undergraduate degree in Sports and Recreation Management. I am currently in my 5th year as a Parent Ambassador for jkidphilly where I plan events for local families ranging from playground playdates to community service events and everything in between. This year, I am also the Coordinator of the jkidphilly Get Together Grants. During the summer I work at Briarwood Day Camp, where I am a camp counselor. This will be my 6th summer. I have over 10 years of experience working with children of all ages in various capacities. Over the years I have held several teaching positions from head preschool teacher to substitute teacher. I love working with children and am excited to be teaching at Ohev Shalom! 

Robin Duretz, Kesher 1st grade

Robin has been a Hebrew School teacher for 20 years as well as a preschool teacher for the past 20 years. Additionally for the past 20 years, she has worked with young children in a day camp setting. She has taught Sunday school to various grades including first and second, at local Bucks County synagogues. Robin is married for 30 years and has two children who are both college graduates. Her daughter Morgan is a teacher assistant and starting a masters program in special education, and her son Max works for Disney World in photography and as a sports mascot in the Orlando area. Robin is excited to a part of the Ohev Hebrew School team for the third year, and can’t imagine doing anything more rewarding than working with young children all year long!

Stacey Salsman, Mechina 2nd GradeStacey Salsman and I grew up in the Philadelphia Jewish community, attending a conservative synagogue and graduating from Gratz College. For much of the past decade, she has worked for a conservative synagogue, planning and coordinating services and programs for many holidays and special events. Before that, she taught Hebrew school in Arlington, VA, when my family lived in the Washington, DC area. I graduated from the George Washington University, where I majored in marketing and minored in communications.Lori Doneson- Jaffe, Aleph 3rd grade

Lori is an honors graduate of Temple University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education, majoring in Elementary and Early Childhood. She currently hold a Pennsylvania dual certification in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. Since graduation, she has been a substitute teacher for K-6 at local school districts. Most recently, she has been a Hebrew school teacher since 2015 and taught various age groups between PreK – 4th grades. She is also a preschool teacher at Shir Ami Early Learning Center where she teaches an adorable group of 3 year olds! This is her first year teaching at Ohev.  Lori plays the clarinet in a couple local community bands. In addition to the clarinet, she can play the Saxophone and Piano (beginner level). She hopes to have fun with her students learning and embracing Judaism as she always enjoyed learning about Jewish culture as a student and wants to share that love with others!

 11539774_10200657980887408_4108857468960657922_nGalit Barzeski, Bet 4th grade

Galit received her BA in Jewish Studies and a Certificate of Special Education in Jewish Studies from Gratz College. She has worked for several area schools including Perelman Jewish Day School as an Assistant Hebrew Teacher where she was for 11 years.  Galit mainly worked in the lower grades teaching Jewish Holidays, Hebrew language and traditions.  She also taught Hebrew at Gratz College Ulpan for adults, which was mainly conversational Hebrew and grammar. She is very excited to begin her 10th year teaching at Ohev Shalom Hebrew/Religious School.  She enjoys working with the kids and sharing with them her love of Judaism and Israel.

Marla Gelfont, Gimel 5th grade

Marla earned a Masters of Jewish Liberal Studies in 1997 and earned 30 credits past her Master’s.  Coursework included the study of the Holocaust.  She also studied Secondary Education Foreign Language at Temple University with a Pennsylvania certification to teach Spanish and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Education in 1990.  She graduated Gratz Hebrew High School in 1985.  Marla has been teaching Hebrew school since 1987 and has been with Ohev Shalom since 1997.  During the school year, Marla is a Spanish teacher at Northeast High School and has been with the Philadelphia School District since 1990.  Her passion is Spin so she teaches three cycle classes per week at LA Fitness.

Listen and read about our own Morah Marla Gelfont on KYW as Philly Fan of the Week

Leah Abrams, Daled 6th grade Hebrew/T’fillah
My name is Leah Abrams. I’m from Springfield, Montgomery County, PA, and grew up at BTBJ, where I currently work as a preschool teacher. I went to Temple University for undergrad, and have a Bachelor’s in Social Work, and Brandeis University in Waltham, MA, for graduate school and have a MBA in Social Policy.  Throughout my career working in the nonprofit sector, I have taught religious school at various synagogues. 
Mady Gelb, Daled 6th grade Jewish Studies
Mady graduated from George Washington University in 2023 with a Bachelor’s degree in cognitive neuroscience with a minor in psychology. She spent her summers growing up at Camp Ramah in the Poconos and even spent two summers as a counselor. She is currently working as a physical therapy technician while applying to graduate school. Mady went through many years of hebrew school at Ohev Shalom and is excited to have fun with her students learning about Jewish culture and teaching them to embrace their Judaism!
gold picSuzanne Gold, Inclusion Facilitator
Suzanne collaborates and partners with the Education Director; Staff; families and clergy to design appropriate, supportive environments and accommodations for students in need of specially designed instruction.  She reviews existing student’s Individual Educational Plans (IEP), 504 Plans and Individual Health Plans that are shared by families and collaborate with teachers to design Hebrew School Action Plans (HSAP).  Additionally, she works closely with the madrachim (teen assistants) to help implement a meaningful, positive program for identified students.  Suzanne is also the Celebrations! @Ohev  Program Coordinator  Celebrations! @Ohev meets monthly for children designed  with cognitive, neuro-behavioral, sensory or physical disorders.  Suzanne contributes to JkidAcess.org preparing material about Jewish Holidays and Values.  She also presents professional development for Jewish Learning Venture making the classroom inclusive for all students within their sacred communities.  Suzanne is a retired Demonstration Special Education teacher for the School District of Philadelphia.  She has enjoyed teaching students diagnosed with a diverse levels of disabilities, including students diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder, ADD/ADHD, and developmental and intellectual disabilities.  She and her husband Larry are members of Ohev Shalom for over 3 decades.  Her children Ariel and Jeffrey attended Hebrew School and Confirmed at Ohev Shalom.
Stacie Graff, Tichon 7th grade guest instructor
Melissa Rosenblatt, Tichon 8th/9th grade

Melissa graduated from West Chester University in 2017 with a Bachelors degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Literacy. In addition, she is a graduate of Gratz Hebrew High School. Melissa is currently working as a permanent substitute in the Council Rock School District. Over the summer, she works as a senior counselor at Camp America Day Camp, where she has been going every summer for 19 years. Melissa lives at home with her mom, dad and brother Brett, along with 3 cats. Melissa has been a member of Ohev Shalom since she was in Aleph (3rd grade) and finds it amazing to have the opportunity to work where she once was a student and is fortunate to be working with Tichon on Wednesday’s.

11665736_10207083424141203_1274467466332285535_nShari Williams, Receptionist

Shari is an attorney by day, specializing in family matters.  Originally from Lower Moreland, she relocated to Florida and taught Hebrew School 7th grade.  Upon moving to Charlotte, NC she taught 5th grade Jewish Studies and Hebrew High school at her synagogue.  In 2011 Shari returned to Bucks County and began working at Ohev as the Hebrew School administrative assistant. 

In memory of
11796414_10206443515793991_6755714875407694557_nMichele Fields z”l, our beloved Gan/Kesher Kindergarten 1st Grade


Ohev Shalom celebrates the uniqueness of each individual and family, and welcomes diversity within our sacred community.


SEE OHEV SHALOM’S PURIM CELEBRATION ON 6ABC http://6abc.com/society/joyous-purim-celebration/1260032/

In the Jewish Exponent:


In the Newtown Patch:

In the Bucks County Courier Times:
School Closing Information:  A closing message will be put on this website, social media and/or sent via email.  Power outages may make it impossible to provide such messages.  In most cases, it is our policy to follow Council Rock School District’s closings.