Sunday, February 23, 2014

What Happened in Grades 3-6 on Sunday, February 23...

Grade 3

Today for Grade 3 was all about Purim!

Mrs. Schulgasser helped us create dioramas of scenes from the Purim story using plastic forks, spoons and knives.

It was great to be able to use a variety of art supplies...

and the finished products all looked awesome!

Grade 4

In Mrs. Abrams Judaics class today, we read about Shifrah and Puach, the two midwives who refused to follow Pharaoh's orders to kill any Hebrew baby boys.

We talked about what made Shifrah and Puach upstanders and then awarded a Shifrah and Puach Award to someone that we know or have learned about who exemplifies what it means to be an upstander.

Here, Max is presenting his Shifrah and Puach Award to the rest of our class. He awarded the Shifrah and Puach Award to one of his teachers.

Afterwards, we split into two groups and made up skits. Each skit had to include one upstander and one bystander and the group that was watching the skit had to guess who was the upstander and who was the bystander.

In Mr. Feinberg's Judaics class, we read Shemot 14:5-25, which is about when the Hebrews are crossing the Sea of Reeds and the Egyptians are in fast pursuit.

We raised questions about the text that we felt would be interesting to talk about as a class. Next class, we'll use our list to begin our discussion to help better understand this important piece of text.

In Hebrew with Mr. Feinberg, we continued our work with Yotzer Or. We played a game where we each tried to read as much of the prayer without a mistake as possible. The last person standing won!

We also spent time learning about the important shorashim (roots) that make up the words of the Yotzer Or

Grade 5


In Ms. Silverstein's Hebrew class, we continued our work with the Kedushah. Now that we can decode this part of the Amidah successfully, we've moved on to practicing the chanting.

In Judaics with Ms. Gonzalez, we learned about the prophetess Deborah.

To demonstrate what we learned, we create songs about Deborah. Some of us chose tunes from songs that we hear on the radio and some of us chose tunes from TV commercials. It was fun to see what everyone came up with!

Grade 6

When doing Hebrew Through Movement with Mr. Solomon we learned two new words: "Shimon" and "Omer." If you put them together, it means Simon Says!

We also played a game with the shorashim (roots) that come up in the Torah service.

In Ms. Killam's class, we started a new unit on G'milut Chasadim (Acts of Loving Kindness).

Some issues that we discussed when considering how G'milut Chasadim can effect the world around us are environmental issues, world hunger and world health.

We also got to celebrate today because we filled our marble jar! Our teachers have now made it more challenging to fill the jar, meaning that the expectations for our behavior and ability to work together as a Kehillah Kedoshah (scared community) are higher than they were at the beginning of the year. We know that we're up to the challenge!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

What Happened in Grades K-2 on Sunday, February 9...


Today was a very special kind of day in Kindergarten! Instead of starting our day with Circle Time, we got to play! Hmmm... what made today special in Kindergarten?

Then, Mrs. Bernstein bought us snacks at the Grade 7 Bake Sale in honor of our special day. Hmmm... what made today special in Kindergarten?

Today was special in Kindergarten because we learned about Shabbat! Shabbat is a special day of the week, where we do things differently from the way that we do them on other days of the week. We can spend time with family, take a break from school and work, rest, relax and enjoy special treats.

To end Shabbat, we have a special ceremony called Havdallah. In Religious School, we do Havdallah once a month on Sunday mornings. Here we are smelling the spice box that is a part of the Havdallah ceremony. It was a very special, very fun day!

Grade 1

Today, before we went to Kehillah, we learned the blessing that we say before we study from the Torah. This was in preparation for the learning that we would be doing when we got back to the classroom after Kehillah and T'filah

In Kehillah we did Havdallah and enjoyed one of our favorite snacks - Cheese Its!

Then we had T'filah with Cantor Yomtov. Afterwards, we went back to the classroom where we learned about Jacob and Esau. They were two brothers who got into a fight and needed to make amends with one another. We used a technique called Torn Paper Midrash to show what we think it looked like when Jacob and Esau became friends again. 

We even learned a few Hebrew words to help us with our Torn Paper Midrash - yad means hand, lev means heart, ach means brother and chaver means friend.

Grade 2

Grade 2 started by reviewing the Aleph Bet. Try asking your student which letters they recognize on the letter chart! 

We also began to prepare for a big review project that will help us solidify our learning from this year. The first part of the project was to brainstorm about what the various themes that we've talked about this year (Israel, God, Temple and Sunday School) mean to us.

We took a break from our classroom learning to participate in Havdallah during Kehillah and pray with Cantor Yomtov during T'filah.

In Art class, we had a special project that focused on something else that means something important to us - people! We drew the people in our lives who are special to us and the best part was that we made them using a pop-up technique!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

What Happened in Grades 3-6 on Sunday, February 2...

Grade 3

In Mrs. Gabay's class, we did an exercise that will help us get ready to explore the Torah in more detail. In this exercise, we learned about the different books that make up the Torah and put them in order. Did you know that there are Hebrew and English names for each book?

After our opening exercise, we began looking at Torah text. We started at the best place to start - the beginning! Here we are reading about the story of Creation.

In Mrs. Zaas' class, we made a giant list of how we do things differently on Shabbat as we begin to think about what makes Shabbat a special day of the week.

Then, in Hebrew with Mrs. Zaas we practiced Hebrew Through Movement using a football in honor of the Super Bowl. Did you know that Mrs. Zaas' son works for the Denver Broncos? Her sign on the luach (white board) gave it away!

Grade 4

In Mrs. Abrams' Judaics class, we worked in small groups to identify what makes someone an Upstander and what makes someone a Bystander.

Each group looked at pictures of different scenarios and decided if the people in the pictures were acting as Upstanders or Bystanders.

Then, we worked to create our own scenarios of Upstanders and Bystanders. Our work today all helped us better understand our Jewish obligation to address issues in the world around us, linking us back to our touchstone text for this unit: "It is not upon you to complete the work, neither are you free from desisting from it" Pirkei Avot 2:15-16.

In Mr. Feinberg's Judaics class we continued our exploration of the opening text of Bereshit (Genesis) and explored what the text means by "good," a word that God uses to describe each step of Creation.

After focusing specifically on the word "good," we raised questions about the text and then grouped our questions thematically. This will set our focus for next week's class. 

In Hebrew, we continued working on decoding Yotzer Or. Mr. Feinberg was very impressed with how well we did!

Grade 5

Our day started with T'filah, led by Cantor Yomtov.

For snack, we enjoyed goldfish - always a favorite!

Then we had Art with Mrs. Schulgasser. To begin, Ms. Gonzalez read us a story about Joshua, who took over for Moses when the Israelites crossed the Jordan River and entered into the Land of Israel.

Then, we made bookmarks that depicted images relating to the story.

After Art, our whole class came back to the Youth Lounge to work on our Hebrew decoding. We worked in pairs and small groups on the Kedushah, the third blessing in the Amidah.

Grade 6

In Mr. Solomon's Hebrew class we started with Hebrew Through Movement. We are excited to start adding new vocabulary words soon and today we focused a lot on the command "l'hatzbiah." By looking at this picture, can you guess what that means?

After Hebrew Through Movement, we reviewed the roots that appear frequently in the opening prayers of the Torah service.

We also read through the part of the Torah service where we take the Torah out of the Ark. We're excited to be wrapping up our work on this collection of prayers and moving on to the next part of the Torah service.

In Ms. Killam's class, we learned about the different part of the Israeli Army, known as the IDF (Israeli Defense Force).

We talked about what we might do after High School and how this is different from the experience that our Israeli peers will have, as they will all join the army.

We also learned about those Israelis who are exempt from Army service and why.

Grade 6 is excited that we've earned another Marble Jar Party! We'll be celebrating on February 23. Going forward, each teacher has upped their challenge to the students in terms of how marbles can be earned. Ask your student what these new challenges will be.