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Culture of Chesed (Kindness)

Culture of Chesed and Responsive Classroom

Hillel Academy students explicitly and implicitly learn and experience a Culture of Chesed (Kindness) through the role modeling and teaching of a variety of midot (values). These values include and are not limited to:

  • Kavod (respect/honor)
  • Chesed (kindness)
  • Emet (truth)
  • Tikun Olam (repair the world / making the world a better place)
  • Tzedaka (charity/support for those with less or in need of support)
  • Ahava (love)
  • Limud (study & learning)
  • Shalom (peace)

Partnering with our Culture of Chesed is the adoption of the school-wide culture program called Responsive Classroom. The Responsive Classroom approach is a way of teaching that emphasizes social, emotional, and academic growth in a strong, positive, and safe school community. Developed by classroom teachers, the approach consists of practical strategies for helping students build academic and social-emotional competencies day in and day out.

Social Action (Tikun Olam)

It is our philosophy that when students serve the community, they become better future stewards of our society.

Extending beyond our walls, students leave their mark in our community by participating in a variety of social action activities either to complete hours needed by our own National Junior Honor Society chapter or as a commitment to our community. Hillel students have worked with a number of charitable organizations such as Tampa Urban Benefit (TUB) Farms, Emmi Grace’s Angels, The Joshua House, Feeding Tampa Bay, and Jewish Family Services.

Social Action activities provided to students at school include and not limited to:

  • MLK Jr. Day of Service: Hillel Academy remains open on this day to serve our community and to learn about the civil rights work of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.
  • Jeans Day (Wednesdays): On Wednesdays, students donate non-perishable items to the Jewish Family Services Food Pantry
  • TUB Farms Hydroponic Garden: In partnership with TUB Farms, students plant, harvest, and donate hundreds of pounds of produce to Holocaust survivors and food pantries
  • JFS Chanukah Wish Lists: Hillel Academy families select dreidels listed with items for purchase that children and teens wish for Chanukah
  • Reverse Tashlich: In partnership with USF Hillel, Hillel Academy families participate in water clean-up projects throughout the area