Exploring the love of reading children's books-in both Hebrew and English

More than 9,000 children in Chicago are receiving high-quality Jewish books and music--at no cost to the families--through the PJ Library, a program sponsored through the Jewish Federation and made possible by local donors. Now, a new program inspired by PJ Library offers Jewish children, with or without Israeli roots--the opportunity to sign up to receive free storybooks in Hebrew.

Sifriyat Pijama B'America (SP-BA) is designed to strengthen participants' Hebrew language proficiency and connections with Jewish values and culture, as well as develop a channel through which young Jewish children can spend more quality time at bedtime with their families in a positive, educational manner.

SP-BA is unique in its objective of strengthening local Jewish communities across the country by bringing unaffiliated Israeli-Americans who are often not connected to the mainstream Jewish community into the Jewish day school environment.

The idea is to motivate families who otherwise haven't become a part of the local day school community to feel welcome in the schools and to come to them for Jewish community events at no charge. Such events will include group readings and other activities that bring the books to life, such as costume parties and plays.

In Chicago, Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago is a local partner of the program. Families interested in participating in SP-BA may register for the program at a kick-off event being held at the Skokie Campus (9301 Gross Point Road) on Tuesday, June 5, 2012 from 9:45 am-10:30 am. For more information, call Leslie Rosen Stern at (847) 412-5617 or email leslie.rosenstern@schechter.org.

For families interested in receiving PJ Library books in English, visit www.juf.org/pjlibrary. For more information on Sifriyat Pijama B'America., e-mail leslie.rosenstern@schechter.org. Please note that JUF cannot process enrollments for Sifriyat Pijama B'America.

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