Museum Tours for School Groups
You can almost hear their voices. Follow in the footsteps of the men, women, and children who crowded into the Eldridge Street Synagogue over a century ago. As you explore this magnificent landmark, learn about immigration to America, architecture or Jewish culture — and discover the story in history.
Lead by experienced educators, our programs support Common Core and New York State and City Learning Standards.
|Available:||Sunday – Thursday, 10am to 5pm|
|Duration:||60 minutes unless otherwise noted|
|Fee:||$6 per student. Subsidies are available upon request.|
The Museum's Immigration programs support New York State Learning Standards, Themes and Common Core Practices including: History of US & NY, World History, Time, Continuity, & Change, Interaction of Cultures, Cultural Identity, Global Connections, Chronological Reasoning & Causation, Comparison & Contextualization, and Gathering, Using, & Interpreting Evidence.
New Lives in a New Land
Step into a building filled with color, light, and memories. Climb stairs, count stars, uncover fascinating stories of immigrant life at the turn of the last century. As students discover the rich history of the Eldridge Street Synagogue, they’ll gain a new appreciation of the obstacles and opportunities all immigrants face as they build new lives in a new land. Incorporates interactive exhibits, historic photographs, and oral histories.
Photo: Sherry Heier
Lower East Side Walking Tour
A century ago, New York’s Lower East Side was home to the world’s largest Jewish community. Hundreds of thousands of Jewish immigrants crowded into tenements, labored in sweatshops, and struggled to survive. Today, new immigrants have changed the neighborhood yet again. But look closely.Tucked along these bustling blocks, signs of immigrant Jewish life – and hopes – still remain.
New for Grade Two! My New York (75 minutes)
What’s a synagogue doing in the middle of Chinatown? Curious second graders are about to find out! As your class studies New York City neighborhoods this year, come explore the historic Eldridge Street Synagogue and the Lower East Side. How has this exciting neighborhood changed over time? What was it like to grow up here when the Eldridge Street Synagogue was new? (And can you guess why some Lower East Side streets are named after fruit trees?) We’ll figure it all out through stories, photographs, film, and a special art project.
Teachers: Please consider a pre-visit to your classroom by a museum educator, to introduce the themes of the program through a reading and discussion of Virginia Lee Burton's "The Little House."
Designed to support the Grade 2 curriculum My Community and other United States Communities, and New York State and Common Core Geography Standards.
New! The Eldridge Street Poetry Project
“I have never started a poem yet whose end I knew.
Writing a poem is discovering.”— Robert Frost
For 126 years, the magnificent Eldridge Street Synagogue has inspired thousands of people including artists, musicians and now, budding poets. Explore the sanctuary’s splendor and the synagogue’s immigrant story. Young writers turn discoveries into words and words into poetry. Make the Eldridge Street Poetry Project part of your poetry unit this year. Customized to suit your classroom curriculum; optional publishing party at the museum included!
Designed to enrich classroom poetry unit and to support Common Core ELA Readiness Anchor Standards for Writing.
Holidays & Jewish Culture
Supports K-5 New York State Learning Standards, Themes and Common Core Practices including; World History, Geography, Interaction of Cultures, Cultural Identity, Global Connections, Geographic Reasoning, and The Role of the Individual in Social & Political Participation.
Celebrate with Us! Jewish Holidays (Grades K-4)
Ready to have some fun? Join us for one of our most popular school programs. Munch some matza, spin a dreidel, and enjoy the happy holiday stories of Chanukah (November-December) and Passover (March-April). Every winter and spring, students of all backgrounds sing, act, eat, and celebrate together!
Ways We Worship (Grades 5-12)
Open the ark, step onto the bimah (reader’s platform) and explore the diverse traditions of the Jewish people. This hands-on interactive program encourages questions and discussion and introduces students of all backgrounds to the historic Eldridge Street Synagogue.
So You’re Celebrating a Bar or Bat Mitzvah?
As you prepare for your big day, come see how immigrant families celebrated 100 years ago. Try out a century old Bar Mitzvah speech. Hear memories of ceremonies that took place at Eldridge Street. Imagine becoming the very first Bat Mitzvah ever. (You think you’re nervous, wait till you hear how she felt!) Connect your own coming-of-age experience to a treasured and evolving tradition.
Shapes and Colors, Patterns and Light
Bring your budding artists, designers, and mathematicians to investigate the shapes, patterns, and colors of the glorious Eldridge Street Synagogue. Armed with clipboards and clues, young explorers hunt for shapes, identify patterns, and create colorful designs of their own.
Supports K-5 New York State Learning Standards, Themes, and Common Core Practices including; History of US & New York, Interaction of Cultures, and Gathering, Using, & Interpreting Evidence. Developed in accordance with the Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Visual Arts.
Landmark of the Spirit
Walls don’t talk but buildings do tell stories. Learn to read the architecture and design of the Eldridge Street Synagogue and discover its fascinating past. Decipher clues about immigrant life, uncover evidence of the building’s decline, and find out how a 19th century synagogue became a 21st century treasure.
Supports NY State Learning Standards, Themes and Common Core Practices including; History of US & New York, World History, Geography, Time, Continuity & Change, Chronological Reasoning & Causation, Comparison & Contextualization, and Gathering, Using, & Interpreting Evidence. Developed in accordance with the Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Visual Arts.
Our educational programs, New Lives in a New Land, Architecture and Art, Ways We Worship, are offered to students of all ages and can be customized to suit your classroom study and level.
Come for one program or do two together. Enhance your understanding of immigrant history by combining any building tour with a Lower East Side walking tour.
Please contact us about multi-visit programs, including a series of programs in the Museum, around the Lower East Side, and in your classroom. Our education staff welcomes the opportunity to plan special programs to support and enhance your classroom learning.