Masa (Journey)

Masa  מַסָּע  Jewish Journey 

Our Jewish journeys evolve throughout our lives, as we experiment with and practice Jewish values, traditions, and rituals.  The resources below can help you fulfill your personal and parenting goals for Jewish living with meaning, intention, and joy.    

Start by choosing a family goal on the left and trying out one Jewish experience. Then come back to this webpage to explore another goal or experience. You can always contact Abby Reiken for guidance with this.

Click here for our Torah La'am and Family Calendar and add upcoming BAS programs to your family's calendar.

Family Goals

Options for Jewish experiences to fulfill your goals
Spending family time together
  • Shabbat dinner--click here for resources.  If you are new to Shabbat dinner, take manageable steps that bring meaning and joy to your family.  You can start by adding lighting candles and/or having challah to your Friday night routine.  Make plans with another family to have Shabbat dinner at home or at a BAS Shabbat Kulanu dinner. 
  • Shabbat services are an opportunity to slow down and focus on time with family, friends, and community. Shabbat services provide time to reflect on what we are grateful for and value in life. Children experience and practice Hebrew and tefillot/prayers, which makes their learning relevant.  Reach out to friends to attend services together. 
  • Carve a block of time on Shabbat for your family to do an activity you enjoy doing: playing games, reading, taking a walk or bike ride, getting together with friends,...  Make sure each parent's need to relax is met as well, so that you all look forward to Shabbat.
  • Havdalah is a fun, short, sensory experience for all ages to say goodbye to Shabbat together.  Click here for a guide.  Add your own spin to it--what would be a sweet way for your family to end Shabbat?
Learning and practicing the Shabbat service Click here for Shabbat prayers you can listen to at home, in the car, with your children...
Having values-based discussions as a family
  • Family discussion of the weekly Torah portion is a great springboard for values-based conversations. Consult a Jewish calendar or
  • For summaries and commentaries about the portion, click here
  • Click here for a guide and topics for family discussions.  
  • Book resources: A Torah Commentary for Our Times by Harvey Fields, Text Messages by Jeffrey Salkin, Values and Ethics-Through a Jewish Lens by Fred and Joyce Claar.  Email Abby about borrowing these books.
Jewish learning for adults
  • Click here for the many BAS adult education options, as well as the BAS calendar for additional programs. 
  • During the Torah La'am family programs, parents have the opportunity to study on an adult level with Rabbi Bronstein and Education Director Abby Reiken. Click here for the Torah La'am and Family calendar for these programs.
  • Click here to learn more about Reconstructing Judaism.
Parent involvement at BAS Click here for a list of a wide variety of ways for adults to get involved, give back, and develop friendships at BAS.  
Jewish parenting support
Parenting workshops throughout the year are an opportunity to come together as a community of parents to share our struggles and successes, as we support each other's efforts to meet our own Jewish parenting goals. 
Practice our values

Check out this Making Mensches Periodic Table and click on each trait to see more information, including videos and texts to share with your family.

Watch this video on the Science of Character which explores who we are and who we want to be. It also teaches us the power of focusing on our own and our children's positive traits.

Click here for BAS opportunities for all ages to help others, such as preparing meals for those who are hungry, advocating for immigrants, or protecting the earth.  At home with your family you can make a vegetable dish or dessert for the Open Arms Shelter in White Plains as part of the BAS initiative. 

Express gratitude   Click here for a BAS family guide to expressing gratitude.

Calmer bedtime and morning routines
Connecting with our children

  • Bedtime ideas: Add calming Jewish rituals to your child's nightime routine. Say or sing the Shema (an interpretation of the Shema is that we are all valuable, deserve respect, and we need to care for each other).  Ask your child to talk about highlights and concerns from their day.  Talk about ways to address your child's concerns, then focus on things to look forward to about tomorrow.
  • Cuddle and read Jewish children's books.  You can borrow children's books from the BAS library next to Abby's office or join PJ Library to receive free children's books.
  • Morning ideas: Cuddle and have a playful moment before getting ready, take a moment to say three things you are grateful for, say or sing the morning prayer of gratitude: Modeh Ani.
Connect to Israel   Click here for a BAS Israel guide for parents 

For our children to be part of a Jewish youth community
  • BAS youth programs including monthly youth events and our band.
  • Schedule playdates for your child to get together with BAS friends.
  • Jewish summer camps—there are many choices for day camps and overnight camps, including Camp Havaya and Havaya Arts—the Reconstructing Judaism overnight camps.

Provide my teen with opportunities to connect to other Jewish teens
  • Our Monday night teen program for grades 7-12 starts with socializing and social action projects during dinner, followed by classes where teens strengthen their Jewish identities by exploring Torah, leadership skills, Israel, Jewish history and philosophy, and current events through a Jewish perspective.
  • Teen activities at BAS
  • Click here for local and world-wide year-long and summer programs for Jewish teens.

Celebrate the Jewish holidays in creative, joyful ways

  Resources for Jewish holidays


Na’aseh v’nishma  נַעֲשֶׂה וְנִשְׁמָע  We will do and we will understand

If you have any questions or would like to set up a time to talk about ways to engage your family in Jewish living and learning, please contact:
Abby Reiken
Education Director


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