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Week of March 21-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

Today was all about Pesach (Passover)!!! As always, we began by sharing our weekly highlights and I am happy to report that family was centric to each student’s favorite memory from the week. After briefly discussing Passover, we watched a super funny Shaboom episode that featured the Plony’s unusual Seder and holiday traditions. Our class learned about the four questions (our favorite being “why do we recline while we eat on this night?”) and watched another short video about Seders, having a Passover scavenger hunt for the holiday’s special food, drinks, activities, and more. Finally, students drew their own seder plates (using the craft supplies available at home). Keep us updated on who finds the afikomen this year!!!

Week of March 14-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

Students played Kahoot to test their knowledge about Passover, including the order of the seder. I was impressed with their knowledge. They should be able to add a great deal this year to the discussions at the Passover Seder. Please make sure to think of ways to keep them engaged throughout the seder.

Week of March 14-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

This week we continued exploring chesed. We started class with different situations that you could show chesed to family members and friends. After a short dance party, students discussed why chesed is so important to us as Jews, listed examples of chesed in their lives, and what chesed they could do for a guest.

Week of March 7-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week the class had a great time seeing what they remembered about Passover by playing Passover bingo. We also had a chance to enjoy the beautiful sunny weather. We will continue learning about Passover for the next couple of weeks.

Week of March 7-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in experiential Education!

This week we continued to explore chesed. We started class reviewing how chesed is going above what is expected of you to show kindness. Students then were shown pictures and had the opportunity to share what they saw and vote if the picture showed people being kind or not kind. Students virtually would vote by holding up one object for kindness and another for not kindness. In person students used the green and red signs to vote. We closed class with students being challenged to think of what kindness means to them for next class.

Week of February 21

Rabbi Kornsgold & Alan

Happy Purim! We celebrated Purim during TIRS Midweek!

EXPERIENTIAL EDUCATION

After reviewing Purim and watching a short video, students worked on a Purim mad lib in small socially distanced groups in-person and as a class virtually.

 

JUDAISM MY WAY

Students had the chance to create a fun and wacky Purim Madlibs, which was quite entertaining! The students reviewed the four mitzvot of Purim and shared with the class who they dressed up as for our celebration.  On Tuesday, the students participated in a variety of fun physical challenges while learning about the different levels of giving charity (we related this to the Purim mitzvah, Matanot L’evyonim – giving charity). On Wednesday, the students learned about Jewish weddings and took part in the mitzvah of M’sameach chatan V’kallah – making the bride and groom happy, by creating posters for them and showering them with candy as they left TI.

Week of February 7-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week we play Jewpardy! Your kids did a great job remembering material we have learned in a variety of categories (Tu B’shvat, colors, body parts, Purim, vocabulary and animals). I am so proud of them. We had a great time!

Week of January 31-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

This week we discussed different tools to help deal with Big Feelings we may have.

We started class with a review on what we have learned about ometz lev and the three options you have with your feelings. Students then learned about the following 7 tools to use when they have Big Feelings:

Take deep breaths, Close your eyes, Find a quiet space, Ask for advice, Pray to God, Make a list, and Think about the problem.

After, students had the chance to discuss how these tools could of helped them deal with a Big Feeling in the past, what helps them to make good life choices, and any other tools that they use that are not on the list. We ended class discussing how it is perfectly normal to have emotions but we have to be able to control our actions, even when we have Big Feelings.

Week of January 31-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week we began learning about Purim!!  The students learned the 4 Mitzvot of Purim (hint, they all begin with the letter mem) and Hebrew vocabulary words related to the holiday. We also had a blast dancing to the song Zodiac (a camp favorite), ask your child to show you the latest Israeli dance moves.

Week of January 17-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week we played a Kahoot to review what your kids learned about the holiday of Tu B’shvat and other fun facts they have learned throughout the year. They did a great job! I am very impressed the amount of information they are retaining from week to week. Our vocabulary words this week were all about animals. Keep up the great work!! 

Week of January 17-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

This week we continued exploring Big Feelings and using our ometz lev. We started class with the statement ”Moses always made the best life choices in the Torah.” Students discussed this using what they have learned in the Torah with most agreeing that he had flaws, but that makes him human. Students then reviewed what ometz lev is and the three options you have when faced with Big Feelings. Students then heard a retelling of 3 Big Feeling moments found in the Book of Shemot (Exodus). Students heard a retelling of Moses and the burning bush, Miriam with her tambourine dancing after reaching the safety of the other side of the Sea of Reeds, and Aaron’s role with the golden calf. After each story, students discussed What Big Feelings were felt, when did the person in the story realize their Big Feeling Moment, and what they did as a response to their Big Feeling. Next class, we will be reviewing tools to help us use our ometz lev when we are faced with Big Feelings.

Week of January 10-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

This week we started a new topic Ometz Lev, inner strength. We began class breaking down what ometz (strength) and lev (heart) meant. Students then discussed what Big feelings are such as angry, sadness, fear, excitement, and extremely happy. We explored how emotions can be both positive and negative and worked together to make a list of them. Students were then ask why we would need ometz lev and how it could help us make choices. Students were shown a short video that compared emotions and how you handle them to a Jack-in-the-box. The first option is to let your emotions explode out. The next was to never leave the box and let your emotions build up until you explode. The last was to use your ometz lev and slowly let your emotions out so you can make good decisions. Students then looked at a few pictures and shared what Big Emotion the person was feeling, why they may feel that way, and how they could use their ometz lev to stop and control their Big Feeling. Students then were told how it is perfectly ok to have feelings, but not all behaviors are ok. We then used the example of being angry. Students discussed times they were angry, how they acted, and what they would do differently if they did not use their ometz lev. We ended class reinforcing that it is ok to have emotions, but only you can control what you do while having them.

Week of January 10-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week we learned about Tu B’shvat, the birthday of the trees and where  the name for the holiday comes from (ask your child/ren to explain). We talked about the Jewish National Fund (JNF), the organization that has planted over 265 million trees in Israel since 1901.  The class discussed the importance of trees in general and specifically, in Israel.

Week of December 13-EXPERIENTIAL EDUCATION

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Judaism!

This week we focused on the differences between Chanukah in Israel and America. We started class discussing how students celebrate Chanukah at home. We then discussed how everyone has different ways they celebrate most Jewish holidays. Next, we watched a short video discussing American and Israeli celebrations for Chanukah. After, students discussed some of the difference they saw in the short video such as in America we tend to eat latkes and in Israel they tend to eat sufganiyot. We went on to discuss how the beautiful part about Judaism is the various different traditions we make. One of the best examples that students discussed was what to put on your latkes, do you make them out of normal potatoes or sweet potatoes, is there a correct way to decorate for Chanukah, and many other traditions that different families participate in.

L’Shalom,

Alan

JUDAISM MY WAY-Week of December 13

Rabbi Kornsgold

Judaism My Way – We continued our celebration of Chanukah with a fun game of Family Feud, the Chanukah edition. Afterwards we reviewed some facts about Chanukah to prepare for the Chanukah trivia at the end of the day.  The afternoon concluded with lighting the Chanukah candles, singing the blessings  as well as Maoz Tzur. It was wonderful to celebrate Chanukah together with our in person and virtual students.

EXPERIENTIAL EDUCATION--Week of December 6

Alan-Judaic Studies

This week we focused on joining new k’hillot and staying connected to the Jewish community. We started class with students discussing new communities that they have joined. Many students talked about going to a new school, moving to new communities, joining sports teams, and other new communities. Students then learned the story of “Hillel on one Foot” which covers a non-Jewish person going to Rabbi Shammai and Rabbi Hillel to learn about the Jewish k’hillah and the Torah. Some students remembered Hillel before he was a great rabbi when we covered sukkat shalom. After the story, students were asked about the story, why do they think the non-Jewish person asked to join the Jewish community the way he did, and what he should have done instead. Students were then asked  to think of a few steps to join a new community. Students as home had the option to write down the information on a sheet of paper or on a sticky note that they would put on their shoe(this literally was to show the “steps”). In class, students wrote on a sheet of paper. Students then showed/volunteered to read their steps to the class. After students had a chance to share, they discussed if any of those steps would have helped the non-Jewish person join the Jewish community more easily. We ended class stressing the importance of with any community you join, you have to actively participate in order to truly be a part of it. We compared that with the Jewish community, it requires us to be connected with each other through prayer, tradition, learning, and even just hanging out with one another.

JUDAISM MY WAY--Week of December 6

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week we learned and reviewed Hebrew vocabulary related to Chanukah. It was a lot if fun and the students learned some new facts about Chanukah.

BLOG-Judaism My Way Week of November 15

Rabbi Kornsgold

Judaism My Way – Your children did a great job showing their knowledge in a variety of subjects this week when we played Jewpardy! I was so proud of how much they learned and retained over the past month and a half. Yasher Koach  to all of them!

BLOG-Experiential Education-Week of November 8

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Judaism!

This week we started our new topic kehillah, which means community.

We started class with students acting out their favorite activity to do with a group as the rest of the class guessed what the activity was. The students then were asked what “shalom kehillah” meant in English. We went on to discuss how we would be covering the Jewish value of community and our focus in this week’s class was what makes a kehillah.

Students then had the opportunity to name 1 or 2 groups they belonged to and we kept a list of them to be discussed later on in class. Students then discussed similarities and differences in a few groups with our last one being celebrating Shabbat at Temple Israel or another synagogue. Students found many similarities and differences between our congregation and other congregations they may have been to. Students then learned the Hebrew word for group, k’vutzah and what makes a community special. We discussed how a group is more than just one person, but that does not make a group a community. Students learned a kehillah makes you feel like you belong, are connected to other members, have a need to help each other, and are together for a reason or to accomplish something. We then went over the list from earlier. Students were encourage to show one of the following (for each part of the list): bull horns a group, moose antlers for community, or a unicorn/narwhal horn if they are both. We then discussed how we are all part of the larger Jewish community and how social connection is important. We also discussed how we need a minyan (10 Jewish people above the age of Bar/Bat Mitzvah) in order to properly do certain rituals and prayers. We also stressed how you cannot be isolated and be part of a community. An example was most of our class goes to secular school where they may be the only Jewish person in their class, but when they are at TIRS, so we have the chance to be with our community. The challenge for the next few weeks for each class is to transform our classes from being a k’vutzah made up of different grades and become a kehillah that helps to keep us connected.

L’Shalom,

Alan

BLOG-Judaism My Way-Week of November 8

Rabbi Kornsgold

This week the students learned the Hebrew words for various body parts.  Then, they played Shimon Omer (Simon Says) to test their knowledge. They did a great job and had a blast! Your children like competition and are very savvy at playing Shimon Omer.

BLOG - Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

 

This week we learned the Hebrew words for different colors. We learned the Hebrew words for sky, clouds, moon and rainbow. We talked about the weekly Torah portion from the prior week, Parashat Noach, and that after the flood God sent a rainbow as a brit (covenant) to the people letting them know God would never again destroy the world through a flood. Students practiced their knowledge of the Hebrew words by playing games. It was a fun and lively week in our class.

BLOG-Experiential Education

Alan

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

We started class with asking how everyone was doing. Students were able to give a thumbs up for good, thumbs down for bad, and a thumbs in the middle for meh. After a brief discussion about it being ok to not be ok, we discussed what it means to be fragile. Students had a chance to give a few examples of things that are fragile such as glass, people’s feelings at times, ceramic plates, etc. Students then looked into Jewish examples such as Moses destroying the ten commandments after discovering everyone was worshipping a golden calf, the breaking a glass during a wedding, and a sukkah. We then looked at a few pictures of different sukkot that had fallen apart. Students discussed what they saw, how they felt about the pictures, what it told us about the strength of a sukkah, and then on to what it tells us about sukkat shalom. We then watch a video about building a sukkah and how we as Jews identify with it. We focused on one line spoken that said a sukkah “needs to be safe, but not too safe because we are not safe from everything we wish to be safe from.” Students then were asked to in our virtual class to give a thumbs up or down to a few things they wished they were safe from. In person, students used their green/red sign from their bags for yes and no. Students then had a chance to add to the list. We then discussed places we went to before the pandemic that we now have no or limited access to for a sukkat shalom, how we can recreate our sukkat shalom now, and how can we as a kehillah help make a sukkat shalom for each other.

L’Shalom,

Alan

BLOG-Judaism My Way

Rabbi Kornsgold

Judaism My Way

People have different entry points into Judaism. During each class we explore different ways people feel connected to Judaism. Over the past few weeks we have experimented with Jewish ritual – we went to the Sukkah and learned to shake the lulav, in addition to learning the blessing recited before we shake the lulav. Another week we played Family Feud. All of the questions were about the Jewish holidays. This past week we looked at Broadway Shows. The students listened to famous songs from musicals and discussed the Jewish theme or the Biblical story it was connected to.  People connect to Judaism in different ways and my goal is to explore these various avenues through interactive activities and discussion.  In addition, in order to give our minds a rest and move our bodies we always learn a fun dance to a Jewish or Israeli song. It has been a pleasure teaching your children!

BLOG-Experiential Education

Alan

We had a great first week of Experiential Education! (Class #1)

We started the class by going over different hand signals that would be used during class by playing 2 games. Students then started to learn about this year’s theme of La-bri’ut which means “To our health” in English. After, students learned about the 5 values we are focusing on this year:

• sukkat shalom (a shelter of peace) A sense of safety

• ometz lev (inner strength) A sense of calm

• g’vurah (courage) Self- and communal-efficacy

• k’hillah (community) Social connectedness

• hesed (loving kindness, tying into hope) Hope attained by reaching out to assist others

To end class, students were told to start thinking about what gives them a sense of shalom for next class when we start the first module, sukkat shalom.

 

 

We had another amazing week of Experiential Education! (Class #2)

This week we stated the first module of La-bri’ut, sukkat shalom. Class started with students having 2 minutes to draw a place they like to go to have peace and quiet. Once time was up, students shared their drawings and explained why they drew what they did. Students then discussed the definition of shalom, and what the work sukkat sounds like sukkah. We then broke down a line from Hashkiveniu, U’fros aleinu sukkat shlomecha which translates to “Spread over us Your shelter of peace.” Students had a chance to explain what this means to them through acting out their feelings such as leaning back if the quote made them feel calm. Students then talked about examples of what makes them feel surrounded by peace. Students then were shown pictures that they had to identify what was in the picture and if the subject looked like it was safe, at peace, and protected. To end class, students were asked to think of sukkat shalom as a strong permanent place, unlike a sukkah which is a temporary shelter. We then ended class with a challenge for students to think about what truly puts them at ease in their lives and within Judaism for the next class.

This week , we continued to learn about Sukkat Shalom by looking at what it looks like to feel safe and protected (Class #3)

We started class review what sukkat shalom meant. Students were shown 4 pictures and asked to hold up fingers for how many showed peace and how many showed shelter. For example, if they thought only 2 of the pictures showed peace, they would hold up 2 fingers. After students had a chance to explain their reasons, students were told the photographer took pictures based on what their idea  of sukkat shalom.

Students then went to find one green and one red item to bring back to the screen over zoom and, in person, took out the sign that had red paper on one side and green on the other. Students were asked various questions where they showed the green object for yes and the red object for no. We then explored a story about Hillel taken from Yoma 25b in the Talmud. Students were asked a few yes or no questions about the story and how it related to sukkat shalom.

Last, students were shown a collection of people’s faces and showed green for if they felt the picture looked like their idea of sukkat shalom, or red if it did not. We then showed people who had a mask covering half so students had to look at the eyes of the people in the picture. We once again discussed why or why not the picture showed a person who was in a shelter of peace. We then explored how we all have different ideas about what sukkat shalom looks like to each of us. Students were asked over the rest of the week to think about what sukkat shalom looks like to them and the people around them.

 

 

Class #4

We started class reviewing how sukkat shalom looks and how it makes us feel. Students were then showed to mosaics that had the word shalom written in the middle of them. We then discussed what made both mosaics similar and different, what a mosaic is, and how art can be a way to express peace. Next, we looked at different parts of a large mosaic that is on the wall of the Rashi School in Boston, MA. Students then had a chance to discuss what they saw, how it relates to the previous mosaics, and how each piece ties into sukkat shalom. We then looked at some of the symbolism such as a tallit covering the entire top of the mosaic, shabbat candles, planting trees, and many others. The last part of class students were asked to sketch what they would have included in the mosaic and had a chance to show it off to the class and explain their creation.

 

Class #5

We had another great week in Experiential Education!

We continued this week with a sukkat shalom scavenger hunt. Our virtual class was tasked with finding two to three items per item requested, explain what the items are, and how it brings you a sense of peace. Students who were in person did a mental scavenger hunt by sharing items and stories with their peers. After students had a chance to show what gave them a sukkat shalom, students were challenged to think of ways they could do the same for others. Some of the examples were using headphones instead of playing loud music, making sure others had the same options to have a shelter of peace, and how we must act as God’s partners to help spread a shelter of peace. 

Tue, April 13 2021 1 Iyyar 5781