GET SMART – SHEILA WOLDENBERG
Early Childhood Director, Temple Dor Dorim | WESTON
What does the position of Early Childhood Director entail?
It involves hiring and managing staff, creating policies, communicating with the parents, placing children with the right teacher, the daily operation of the school, putting all programming on the school calendar, calendar set up, budgeting the program, marketing, teacher evaluation, teacher agreements, staff meetings, ordering supplies and more. I have worked at the school for 18 years and the last several years as assistant director. When the director left, I was offered the job.
What are the most important aspects of education to address for students in that age group?
Children in preschool need to have the opportunity to explore and learn through play. They need to be active and learn through hands-on activities. Social development, language development, small and large motor development and intellectual development are the primary focus for preschool.
What do you think is at the heart of Dor Dorim that sets it apart from other schools?
We have incredible teachers! They are loving and dedicated to the field of education. All of our teachers are trained and certified. The children also experience different programs that enrich their learning… snow day, truck day, bike safety day, community helper’s day, farm day, gardening and a multicultural curriculum. We also have a dual-language program beginning in the fall.
What are some of the different or special programs for each category of students that they aren’t likely to have access to at traditional schools in South Florida?
This year we have started a dual-language program for Pre-K. The children will be learning the first half of the day in English and the second part in Spanish. All children are exposed to Hebrew, English and Spanish. Our special programs are sports, music, Spanish, Judaics and yoga, library and gardening. We have many special activities throughout the year…challah making, shofar making, farm day, senior citizens visit to have Thanksgiving with the students, oil making, snow day, bike day, truck day, BSO/Community helpers week.
In addition to a topnotch academic experience, what are the traits that Temple Dor Dorim students are encouraged to develop?
In our curriculum we teach Jewish values…acts of loving kindness, respect for ourselves and community, giving back to others, and respect for parents, taking care of our world and community and manners.
For more information, visit dordorim.org.