labjr-logo_LS-URL-socialcardWhat is Lab/Jr.?

Led by a team of gifted and dedicated experiential educators, Lab/Jr. brings a special dynamic of meaningful learning and artistic adventure for kids at our High Holy Days. This year’s programming is crafted by the High Holy Days Director of Lab/Jr. Jennifer Levine and Lab/Shul’s Director of Family Education Shira Kline along with our Advisory Circle.

Family Friendly Worship Starts The Day

Gather for interactive, meaningful and musical family worship on both Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur mornings from 9:00am-9:45am for kids and their adults. We have two Family Friendly Worship options:

Families with Children ages 0-7 with Shira Kline

Families with Children ages 8-12 with Naomi Less


Parallel to adult learning, Lab/Jr. will explore the implications, motivations and actions of this year’s theme, “Becoming full circle.” In Play/Lab we will step inside the magic circle, using games and tactile activities that celebrate the anniversary of creation. In Kid/Lab we will explore and honor our wholeness using the circular form of an apple as an image of self-acceptance. In Tween/Lab, through games, media and challenge exercises, our teens will explore how they can be part of casting circles of empathy and justice in their lives.

How to Register for Lab/Jr?

When you purchase passes for the High Holy Days and provide all kids’ names and birth dates, they are automatically registered for all Lab/Jr. programming. Please note that if kids do not participate, they are expected to stay with you during worship. Our educators look forward to meeting you with your kids at a mandatory check-in Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur morning.


Lab/Jr. High Holy Day Schedule

Thursday, September 21st
Rosh Hashanah Day

9:00am–9:45am Lab/Jr. Family Friendly Worship:

Lab/Jr.’s Young Family Worship (0-7)
Lab/Jr.’s Family Worship (8-12)

9:45am–11:45am Lab/Jr. Programming:

Play/Lab, Ages 0-4 + grown ups
Kid/Lab, Ages 4-7
Kid/Lab, Ages 8-10
Tween/Lab, Ages 11-12

11:45am Lab/Jr. Joins Main Worship
  Parents, please pick up your children from their respective Kid Lab A and B areas.

Saturday, September 30th
Yom Kippur Day

9:00am–9:45am Lab/Jr. Family Friendly Worship:

Lab/Jr.’s Young Family Worship (0-7)
Lab/Jr.’s Family Worship (8-12)

9:45am–12:45pm Lab/Jr. Programming:

Play/Lab, Ages 0-4 + grown ups
Kid/Lab, Ages 4-7
Kid/Lab, Ages 8-10
Tween/Lab, Ages 11-12

12:45pm Lab/Jr. Joins Main Worship
  Parents, please pick up your children from their respective Kid Lab A and B areas.

Please note, there is no family programming Rosh Hashanah Eve (9/20) and Kol Nidrei (9/29).



Jennifer Levine, Director of Lab/Jr. for the High Holy Days, is currently the Director of Education at Temple Sholom, a Reform Synagogue in Scotch Plains, NJ. She has worked in Jewish education her entire career combining her leadership and inventive programming skills.

She is a graduate of the JTS/HUC Leadership Institute, a three year training program for Jewish education leaders. She is also a recent graduate of the IJS (Institute of Jewish Spirituality) Jewish Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Training.

She is a co-founder of The Peace Garden Song and Mural Project – an arts education program that brings music, murals and mindfulness into schools. She is also visual artist (
Jennifer lives in Montclair, NJ with her teenage daughter.

Amy Fabrikant, MA is a Writer, Literacy Specialist, and a National Speaker for Diversity, Access and Equity in Education. Amy has worked in education for over 30 years and currently teaches and supervises for Columbia University Teachers College. Amy holds certifications in Elementary Education Literacy Specialist, Mindfulness, Conflict Resolution, and Restorative Justice Circles. Amy is the author of parenting and school based articles and author of the award-winning book, When Kayla Was Kyle.

Sheridan Gayer loves transforming the holidays with you. Author of Moadim L’Simchah: A Celebration of Jewish Holidays, she’s an ImmerseNYC Mikveh guide and the founder of Creating Communities of Care. She’s committing 5778 to finding new ways of caring for those in need.

Jamie Kovacs is an artist, an experienced public school Art teacher and a devoted yogi.
She holds degrees in East Asian Studies and Ceramics from Indiana University and a masters degree in Art Education. She studied at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, The Kushi Institute, Haystack Mountain and Penland Schools of Crafts. She is passionate about spiritual studies, quiet walks in nature and cultivating a creative life filled with wonder and joy.

Scott Massarsky is an artist, songwriter and herbalist who graduated from the school of visual arts with a BFA in painting, book and printmaking. He attended the URJ run Camp Harlam for many years which instilled him with a love for Jewish culture, connection and tradition.

Shawn Shafner is an artist, educator, activist and founder of The People’s Own Organic Power Project. His latest show, An Inconvenient Poop, was a Time Out NY Critic’s Pick and garnered the 2015 award for Overall Excellence in Solo Performance from the New York International Fringe Festival. He enjoys creating projects that encourage socialization among strangers, including The Clap (with Laura Silver), a tashlich art walk for Elastic City (with Amichai Lau-Lavie), and Latch/Attach for the World Policy Institute, Fourth Arts Block and Cooper Union. Shawn was a 2014-15 LABA Fellow, 2014-15 iLAND resident in collaboration with LMCC, and last year joined the Charles and Lynn Schusterman’s ROI Community. You can find him teaching mindfulness in urban schools through Move This World, and engaging young children at the 14th Street Y, JCC Manhattan, Union Temple and the Jewish Center of the Hamptons.

Melissa Shaw just finished a stint as one of Pop Up for Change’s Community Educators at the 14th street Y, where she and her team conceived and built a Pop Up Hair Salon at the Sirovich Senior center in the East Village. Melissa is a Teaching Artist with Girl Be Heard, a feminist arts organization as well as with the social justice organization, Community Word Project. In addition she is a consultant and trainer for the Anti-Defamation League where she leads Anti-bias workshops for students and educators throughout the state of New York. Melissa is a storyteller, theater maker, and writer and received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College. This summer she also instructed at Crossroads Juvenile Detention Center. She lives in Brooklyn without a cat.

JessAnn Smith is thrilled to spend her 5th hi ho season with Lab/Shul! In addition to freelancing all over NYC as a producer and teaching artist, she acts, sings & performs musical improv. JessAnn loves coffee, international travel & art and is very passionate about inclusion & intersectionality in her Jewish & Queer communities. Fun Facts: JessAnn is left-handed, her favorite color is sparkles and she plays trombone with the Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps! (More @therealjessann &

Rose Snitz is a dedicated songleader, educator, worship leader, and Jewish youth worker based in Brooklyn, NY. Her passion is working to engage the next generation of Jewish people and leaders. She has a wide range of experience with all ages in t’filah, classrooms, youth group events, and camp settings. Rose is excited and honored to be back with the LabJr team again to bring in 5778!

Ilana Symons is in her third year at New York University, studying Philosophy and Judaic Studies. She was involved in NFTY and other URJ programs in her hometown of Pittsburgh and continues her love of Judaism as a religious school educator across the city. She aspires to become a rabbi and has a passion for social justice.

Rebecca Timman is a Brooklyn based sculptor and fabricator who can generally be found either in a dusty wood shop or working behind the scenes in museums and galleries. Outside of the shops Rebecca has a studio in brooklyn which she creates ink drawings and sculptures out of Wood and Bronze. When she isn’t sporting a tape measure and safety goggles Rebecca can be found sitting with children and adults of all ages, leading discussions and exploring the history of torah and how its teachings and rituals translate into modern day life.

Samantha Turret is so happy to be back with Lab/Jr. She is a New York City actress, youth theatre director and teacher. She currently teaches after school acting and ELA courses at East Harlem Tutorial and PS196.

Ariel Warmflash is a theatre artist, activist and educator based in Brooklyn. She works as a Teaching Artist with the Creative Arts Team and Opening Act making theatre with young people all over New York City. Ariel is also the Community Programs Director for The In[heir]itance Project, a devised theatre company. She holds a master’s degree in Applied Theatre from The CUNY School of Professional Studies.