Congregation Ner Shalom of Woodbridge will open an early learning center called Gan Teva in the fall.

Gan Teva, which means “Nature Garden” in Hebrew, will offer a play-based curriculum, celebrating Jewish tradition and a love of nature, the congregation said. The temple’s 10 acres will serve as an outdoor classroom, honoring the belief that children learn best and are happier and healthier when outdoors.

Gan Teva is open to children 3 to 5 years of age from all backgrounds. The first class will have a maximum of 12 children with one teacher and one aide.

Rabbi Elizabeth Goldstein, who leads the congregation Ner Shalom, will be the school director. She will also serve as the Judaic consultant for Gan Teva. For more information, email

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