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randeis Hillel Day School offers an engaging, integrated and rigorous curriculum that includes a strong foundation in core academic disciplines: English - with an emphasis on writing, reading and public speaking - Hebrew, Spanish (in Middle School) mathematics, science, social studies and Judaic studies.

In addition, art, athletics, drama, music, technology and outdoor education are important components to enhance the development of our students’ hearts, minds and souls. Developing social and emotional skills are an important part of our program as well and play an important part in our school culture.

BHDS has an overall student-teacher ratio of 9:1; our low student to teacher ratio enables each child to reach his or her full potential. Our instructional philosophy reflects standards developed by the State of California, national teachers’ organizations and our own faculty. Brandeis Hillel’s faculty follow the best practices set by experience, a collaborative approach and the most recent findings in educational research.

Academic News

  • Fifth Grade Experiences Once-in-a-Lifetime Boat Trip

    Posted October 28, 2014

    The fifth grade class experienced a once-in-a-lifetime working boat trip on Monday as part of their semester-long science curriculum on oceans. Our students were treated to a hands-on look at brackish estuary mud, vertebrate and invertebrate animals, and the field of hydrology at the Marine Science Institute (MSI). On the boat, students had a chance to cast a net to catch various sea creatures and then identify the animals; collect a sampling of brackish estuary mud and sift through it to find invertebrate animals; test the salinity and density levels of the water using a hydrometer. Following the field trip, representatives from MSI visited BHDS to lead a design thinking workshop on biomimicry - the imitation of the models, systems, and elements of nature for the purpose of solving complex human problems. Fifth graders examined features of invertebrate animals and formed their own ideas about how these animals can help solve human problems.

    “This field trip is a great visible connection to what we are studying,” says fifth grade teacher Maria Seward.

    Read on for more details about the hands-on explorations of the fifth grade...


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  • Eighth Grade Students View Rare Partial Solar Eclipse

    Posted October 28, 2014

    Led by middle school science teacher Rich Seymour and director of admissions and outreach Pamela Welner, our 8th grade students had the opportunity to watch a partial solar eclipse last Thursday, which provided a great ending to their first semester astronomy unit. Solar eclipses are less common than lunar eclipses because the moon casts a relatively small shadow on earth, and you have to be in the right place at the right time to see it. Eclipses are part of a larger chapter of study for the middle school students, where they also learn about tides and the reason for the seasons. Many of the lower school classes joined the 8th graders on Swig Field to witness this rare sighting – the next solar eclipse visible in the northwest United States will be in 2017!

  • Eighth graders pose with Isidore Karten

    Eighth Graders Preview Film about the Jewish Partisans of World War II

    Posted October 23, 2014

    The 8th grade class participated in an incredible program this week, previewing a film that premiered at the Jewish Partisans Educational Foundation (JPEF) Gala fundraiser on Monday and having the opportunity to speak with the film’s producers. The film follows two teenage boys—Jonathan, 18, and Izzy, 14—who travel with their father to Ukraine to the place where their grandfather fought with the partisans during World War II. The film really touched our students, as it is shown from the perspective of a 14 year old. One of our 8th graders noted, “I learned a lot about the partisans…I also learned a lot about how the Jews did, in fact, fight back. I think [this film] expands my knowledge. I learned with my heart."

    Our 8th graders had the opportunity to not only speak with the boys, but also with Mitch Braff, the founder and executive director of JPEF. This film showing and discussion is a precursor to the Judaic studies unit on the Holocaust that our 8th graders will begin at the beginning of the second semester.

    Click HERE to see a short preview of the film, Survival in the Forest: Isidore Karten and the Partisans.