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An Ethical Start

“Do not separate yourself from the community…”

“Acquire a friend for yourself...”

“Do not look at the jug, look at what’s inside.”

These are just a few examples of the teachings from our Jewish early childhood curriculum, An Ethical Start®.  An Ethical Start® is a values-based curriculum designed specifically for JCC preschools to teach ethics and values to young children and support families in bringing these values into their homes.  An Ethical Start® is based on the book Pirkei Avot – Ethics of the Fathers.  It was developed by the Jewish Community Center Association, which was funded in part by the Steven Spielberg Righteous Persons Foundation. This innovative program enhances and deepens family commitment to the learning and practice of ethics and values. The six areas of focus consist of the following values: responsibility, dignity, kindness, community, tradition and respect. An Ethical Start® is a groundbreaking way of helping families and early childhood teachers study a classical text and develop a shared vocabulary for raising young children with a respect and understanding of ethics and values.  It also shows your child ways to turn ethical values into ethical behavior.    

We use the following developmentally appropriate themes to help our children develop values:clientuploads/ECC/EthicalStartLogo.jpg

  • It’s About Looking and Seeing
  • It’s About Me
  • It’s About Me and You
  • It’s About Me and Community
  • It’s About Me and the Jewish People
  • It’s About Me and Everyone and Everything