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TIRS - Class News

PLEASE CLICK ON YOUR CHILD'S TIRS CLASS TO JUMP TO YOUR SPECIFIC SECTION OR SCROLL DOWN TO FIND UPDATES FOR ALL TIRS CLASSES.

GAN (Kindergarten)

ALEPH (1st grade)

BET (2nd grade)

GIMEL (3rd grade)

DALET (4th grade)

HEY (5th grade)

VAV  (6th grade)

ZAYIN  (7th grade)

IVRIT

TROPE

EXPERIENTIAL EDUCATION: TUESDAY/WEDNESDAY

 

Gan (Kindergarten)

Week of November 3

Dear Gan Parents,

With our holidays behind us we turn to exploring stories from the Torah. Before we started our first story we took a moment to check on our etrog. It is still yellow, but has shrunk a bit. We also cut one open and looked inside. There were many seeds, a very thick skin and not much fruit.

Our first “Torah Talk” focused on Creation. We learned that God created the world, bit by bit, in 6 days and rested on the Day 7, Shabbat. We put together a floor puzzle depicting each day and listened to the opening paragraph of B’reisheet in Hebrew. We had a lively discussion about things God created and what we are especially happy that God did create. Answers ranged from our families to rainbows to basketball! God was very busy indeed!

Our new letter this week was Tav for Torah, tapuach (apple) and Talmud Torah (Hebrew school). We have now learned 5 letters and are proud of the words we remember. We are also getting very good at singing the Aleph-Bet song 🎶Aleph, bet vet🎶

REMINDERS:

Please be sure to send in your child’s folder along with a kippah and tzedakah weekly.

I am looking forward to seeing you all at our Family Education Program on November 24th. Please plan to accompany your child as we explore The Bedtime Shema. Details to follow.

There is no TIRS this Sunday (it is Veteran's Day weekend) so I will next see our students on Sunday, November 17.

Have a great week!

Morah Devorah

 

Hi everyone.

We had another great day today. We learned about Creation. While learning about each day G-d was creating the world, we also talked about what we are grateful for. We had some interesting answers. On our bulletin board in front of the room, are the pictures of what the students were most grateful for. Please ask your children what they are most grateful for. I think you will find it interesting if you get the same answers that we did. We enjoyed talking about Shabbat (7th day of creation. The day of rest) We learned the letter Tav today to add to the other letters we have already gone over.

One other thing that kids did with Morah Elianna was alphabet yoga. They made Hebrew letters out of their bodies. They even got into groups and made the word Shabbat in Hebrew.

As always, we ended our day with Tefillah. They love to sing!.

Thank you as always for letting us teach and play with your children. We look forward to seeing them in 2 weeks.

Please remember to send a backpack and their folder each Sunday and if you would like a water bottle. Most importantly since the weather is getting colder, a coat or sweatshirt. We will go outside to play in the playground time permitting, and we always walk over to the synagogue for tefillah.

Morah Stephanie & Morah Eliana

 

 

Week of October 20

Morah Devorah (Denise)

Dear Gan Parents,

It’s always a little sad when the High Holidays come to an end. Today we learned about Simchat Torah and how we celebrate the end of reading the Torah and beginning it again. We will sing and dance together and start to read the Torah all over again this year. We created a paper Torah that can be used during hakafot (the Torah parade). The last word in the Torah is Yisrael and ends with a Lamed. We immediately begin reading the first chapter which begins with Bereshit (in the beginning) and a Bet. If you put the Lamed and Bet together you make the word Lev which is heart. The Torah is the heart of the Jewish people! We ️ Torah!

A few reminders: Each week we need you to send in: a tote bag/backpack with your child’s empty folder, a kippah and tzedakah to help us teach that we need to help others. See you on November 3rd.

 

Morah Sarah (Stephanie)

Hi all.

We had a fun day in class on Sunday. The students shared their stories about Sukkot and whether or not they went to a sukkah. Most were able to go to at least one, whether it was at the synagogue or a friends/relatives house. Of course this being holiday season, the next holiday, Simchat Torah, was introduced. The kids learned what Simchat Torah is all about. The end of reading the Torah starting it all over again from the beginning. (Bereshit). Then, we got up and danced with stuffed Torahs. We talked about how many commandments were given to the Jewish people and doing Mitzvot.

We read a book about how one Mitzvot (good deed) can cause many Mitzvot to happen in a neighborhood. Then, we then went outside to the sukkah. It was too wet to eat snack in the sukkah, but we had the chance to say the blessing for being in the sukkah. We came back in and had snack with the other Gan class, while Morah Devorah read a book to everyone.

We made either flags or Torah scrolls to take home for Simchat Torah. Today's letter was Dalet. We now have learned, Shin, Tet, Lamed and Dalet.

A little housekeeping:

You may want to send in a water bottle for your child. We have water for your kids during snack, but they get thirsty throughout the morning!

Please send your child with a bag/backpack. We give them papers to take home in their folder. Most important-it's getting cooler out. Each week we walk to the synagogue for tefillot (services) and the kids get chilly on the walk over to Temple Israel. Please send a jacket or sweatshirt with your child for this walk to and from the synagogue. As always, thank you for sharing your child with us. We enjoy having them each week.

 

Week of October 13

Morah Devorah (Denise)

Dear Gan Parents,

This week was awesome! Our Gan students shared holiday stories and spent time preparing for Sukkot. We learned about building temporary shelters to remember how we lived in the desert on our journey from Egypt to Canaan. Also, during harvest time, Jewish farmers lived in Sukkot in their fields. Remember those Jewish stars your children decorated before school started? Well, they’ve been laminated and are hanging in the Temple Israel Sukkah! They look beautiful and I hope you will have a chance to see them. We also got up close and personal with a lulav and etrog and did a whole lot of shaking. In fact we imagined ourselves to be lulavs and put on some music and shook ourselves silly! Our new letter LAMED is tall, like a lulav, and begins that word. Enjoy the rest of Sukkot and I hope you get a chance to enjoy a meal in a sukkah in this beautiful fall weather!

Chag Sameach!

 

Morah Sarah (Stephanie)

This past Sunday was our first week split up into 2 classes. We had a great time hearing stories about who came to visit or who we visited for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. As we all know, the holidays come fast this time of year. We read a story and learned all about Sukkot, how to shake a lulav and why there is no roof on a Sukkah. We then did our own shaking and moving. We also scratched off some apples to hang in the TI sukkah for decorations. We learned the letter Lamed this week to add to the Shin we learned a few weeks ago. Thank you for sharing your children each week. They are a joy to have in the class each week.

 

 

 

 

 

Kitah Aleph (1st grade)

 

Week of November 3

This week we concentrated on the Torah, a special gift that God gave to the Jewish people. We learned that the Torah has 5 books in it with many different stories, along with all of the commandments that are designed to help us live a better life. The first book is Genesis, and the first story is that of Creation. We saw pictures of how a scribe, or a sofer, writes the Torah on parchment from a Kosher animal, using a feather and Kosher ink. One of the questions from the children was “why do we write on parchment, if we have to kill the animal? Isn’t that cruel? We are supposed to be kind.” I didn’t get into the idea of being a vegetarian, and just told them that perhaps they used animals who were very old and ready to die, and that animals were always treated humanely. I went on to say that this has been the tradition for thousands of years. We then did perhaps their favorite project of the year—we made our very own Torahs! We did use paper rather than parchment, and black paint rather than ink, but we wrote with feathers. They did inform me that even if the feathers are from a Kosher animal (we guessed perhaps a turkey) they were colored, and so in the process of dying them were probably not Kosher any more. The children took making them very seriously, and were very careful with their writing and drawings. Most of them practiced writing Hebrew letters in them! While they were creating their Torahs, one of the children said he was thinking of the story of the Golden Calf. This led to a discussion of where in the Torah did the Golden Calf appear? They remembered that it was when Moses was getting the Torah from God, and there was a lively discussion about what Moses did with the first set of tablets he brought down from the mountain. I have shared with you before that this class has a lot of thoughtful comments! I hope you all enjoy seeing the Torahs—your children are very excited and proud of them.

We then read a story about Creation, In The Beginning by Greengard. We colored a sheet that had the days of Creation on it—the six days that God worked, and the seventh day that God rested, that we call Shabbat. We shared a “Creation Rap” with the children, and sent the words home with them. We also spoke at length about what things are made by God, and which are made by man.

When we went to Temple Israel for Tefillah and Shira, we made a stop in the lobby to look at the Illustrated Torah. They were fascinated, and then excited to see that it was open to the story of Noach (which we will study in a couple of weeks) because there is a Noach in our class! Then they wanted to know if Noach will be on every panel in the Torah…..

A reminder that there is no school on November 10. Then we will meet for 2 more weeks, and be off for Thanksgiving. Please remember that we walk over to Temple Israel each week, and to send your children dressed appropriately for the weather.

 

Week of October 20

This past week we learned about Simchat Torah, the holiday where we read the last story in the Torah, roll back to the beginning, and begin again. We saw an example of this in our classroom child-made Torah, with the words “Yisrael” at the end, and “Bereshit” (in the beginning) at the beginning. Since it was the last day of Sukkot, we went to the Sukkah in the playground with the Gan and Bet classes, and recited the blessings for the sukkah. We read The House OnThe Roof by Adler, and The Sukkah Our Family Built. Then we created flags for the children to take to Temple Israel for the Simchat Torah service on Monday—hopefully many of them got to parade around with them as the Torahs were taken out for the hakafot, or processional. We talked about how the first story in the Torah is about the Creation; we’ll study that more in depth in the coming weeks. The letter of the day was Dalet, for degel (flag).

A reminder that there is no school this coming Sunday, October 27. I am enjoying getting to know your children so much! This is a class that loves discussion, which I welcome. They think about what we are learning and have so many good comments and questions it makes teaching them a joy. Thank you for sharing them!

Please let me know if you have any comments, questions, or concerns. If you know your child will be absent or need to be picked up early, it is very helpful if you can notify me in advance. judilecker@aol.com. Shalom!

 

Week of October 13

Today we learned about the holiday of Sukkot. We talked about how a sukkah is a temporary house, and it is a mitzvah to eat and even sleep in it during the holiday, just like the Jews roaming the desert after their escape from Egypt or like modern day farmers who want to be close to the fields during harvest. We got to shake a lulav and etrog in all directions, to show that God is everywhere. I sent home copies of the blessings for the Sukkah and for the lulav and etrog. Several students shared that they will have their own sukkah at home! For snack, we had a picnic on the floor to pretend we were in a sukkah. We read Tamar’s Sukkah by Ellie Gellman, and Sammy Spider’s First Sukkot, by Rouss. We made scratch art decorations to adorn the sukkah at Temple Israel. I hope you will get a chance to see them! The letter of the day was Lamed, for lulav.

We also worked on our first folder from the “Let’s Discover God” series from Behrman House. This is a beautiful series that helps the students to better understand, at their own level, about God, and how God is such an important part of our own lives and the universe as well. The folder for today was entitled “God’s World”. It deals with how God created the world according to a divine plan. There is order in God’s world, and we talked about the different orders of the year, the week, the seasons, and in our lives. I asked how we know, for example, that it’s Shabbat. Several students said because that’s when they go see their grandparents! For those who live close enough to do so regularly, it’s such a beautiful tradition that obviously means a lot to them! The final activity in the folder was to write and illustrate in our notebooks how we can be partners with God. I absolutely loved the answers! They ranged from helping take care of the earth, to helping animals, to standing up for our friends, helping people find homes, and taking care of the sick. If you get a chance, come in and take a look at these notebooks. We keep them in the classroom, but will send them home at the end of the school year.

A quick reminder to send in tzedekah each week as well as a book bag and/or a folder. As always, please feel free to contact me at judilecker@aol.com if you have questions, concerns or comments. Enjoy Sukkot!

 

 

 

 

Kitah Bet (2nd grade)

 

Week of November 3

Shalom Bet Families!

Last Sunday, the Bet students learned to read the letter Lamed and worked on their Hebrew reading skills in small groups. Our Bet Judaica unit, “Let’s Discover the Synagogue” focuses on introducing students to the central role of a synagogue in Jewish life. By spending time at Temple Israel and learning about what is in a synagogue and why synagogues are important, each child will develop a connection to the synagogue and feel comfortable in the synagogue environment. We started the unit by taking a tour of Temple Israel and discussing why Jewish people go to synagogues. We explored all of the rooms at Temple Israel and played a fun game where each student completed the sentence “I am going to synagogue to…” and then had to repeat the responses by the other students in the class. It was lots of fun!

For Dinner Conversation: Share a special or interesting activity that you have had at synagogue, Temple Israel or any synagogue. Ask your child..what are the rooms in a synagogue? What is the name of our synagogue? What did they notice during our tour of the synagogue?

For Hebrew reading practice, Bet students should log onto http://www.behrmanhouse.com/click-and-read-free and complete Lesson 3-Lamed. This is extremely important if your child was absent. We will be moving ahead, and if students do not complete the missed unit, they will be behind their classmates. Reading practice will strongly enhance each Bet student’s success with Hebrew reading.

Always know that you can contact me with any questions or concerns at mmusa@carolina.rr.com.

Morah Margaret

 

Week of October 20

Shalom Bet Families!

Last Sunday, the Bet students learned to read and write the letter Mem and worked on their Hebrew reading skills in small groups. We visited the Sukkah and recited the blessing to sit in the sukkah, but had to eat our snack in the classroom because the ground in the sukkah was wet. In Judaic studies, we learned about Simchat Torah and how it celebrates the yearly cycle of reading the Torah. We discussed how a Torah is written by a sofer with a quill pen on parchment. We wrapped up the High Holidays with a class Trivia Game! In Tefillah, we sang the Friday night prayers-Tzadik Katamar, Yismechu and Ki Hem Chayenu.

For Hebrew reading practice, Bet students should log onto http://www.behrmanhouse.com/click-and-read-free and complete Lesson 2 Mem. This is extremely important if your child was absent. We will be moving ahead, and if students do not complete the missed unit, they will be behind their classmates. Reading practice will strongly enhance each Bet student’s success with Hebrew reading.

Always know that you can contact me with any questions or concerns at mmusa@carolina.rr.com.

Morah Margaret

 

Week of October 13

Shalom Bet Families!

Last Sunday, the Bet students practiced reading with the letters Bet, Shin, and Tav and two vowels sounds that make the “AH” sound. The students read in small groups, and then played an interactive Hebrew reading game with lots of movement. We also learned about Sukkot by reading a story about Sukkot, smelling and shaking the lulav and etrog, and creating apple decorations that will hang in the Temple Israel sukkah. In Tefillah, we sang the Friday night prayers Tzadik Katamar, Yismechu and began learning Ki Hem Chayenu.

For Hebrew reading practice, Bet students should log onto http://www.behrmanhouse.com/click-and-read-free and complete Lesson 1 for Bet, Tav, and Shin. This is extremely important if your child was absent. We will be moving ahead, and if students do not complete the missed unit, they will be behind their classmates. Students are also encouraged to work ahead in Unit 2 and practice reading with Mem. Reading practice will strongly enhance each Bet student’s success with Hebrew reading. Always know that you can contact me with any questions or concerns at mmusa@carolina.rr.com.

 

 

 

 

Kitah Gimel (3rd grade)

 

Week of November 3

Hi Gimel Families,

I hope all of the kids and families enjoyed the Gimel Family Ed Siddur cover project!

Now that the holidays are over, the class looked at what our journey through the first book of Torah will be like.  We started with a “what we already know“ session where students had the chance to list all of the things they knew about the story of creation.  We then took turns reading and sharing thoughts and found we were able to add so much to our list.  I am so proud of all of the students, how they shared their thoughts and for how they asked so many great questions.

This is going to be a great journey through the Book of Genesis!

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Morah Ilene

 

Week of October 20

The students had a blast creating their covers for the siddur they will receive at the Class Shabbat on Friday, January 24.

In the next few weeks you will be receiving information about writing a dedication which will be placed inside your child’s siddur.

 

Week of October 13

Hi Gimel Families!

This past week the class  discussed the holiday of Sukkot. The class first discussed all of the items we may find in a Sukkah and then used this information to discover what Sukkot means, the symbols associated with this holiday and why we celebrate. The discussion then turned to what we do inside the Sukkah and what items we would need and how to build a sukkah. We also talked about the idea of a Sukkah as a temporary home. The class listed all of the temporary types of homes they could think of and we related those back to the Sukkahs we build and use today.

We imagined what it would be like to look up at the stars at night just as the Jewish people coming out of Egypt would have done. We then had a chance to learn each plant that goes into making the lulav. The class was able to see and learn about the lulav and touch and smell the etrog. We then learned the prayer recited before shaking the lulav and etrog together. After this each student had a chance to shake the lulav and etrog. Please ask them to tell you about each and part of the lulav and how the etrog smelled. Next week is Gimel Family Education! I cannot wait to see you all in the Temple Israel Sukkah (in case of rain, we will be meeting in the TI Social Hall). Chag Sameach on a joyous Sukkot!

 

 

 

 

Kitah Dalet (4th grade)

 

Week of November 3

 

Week of October 20

Dear Parents,

This week we learned about how Simchat Torah is celebrated here and in Israel and watched some celebrations from Tel Aviv. Then, we each made our own Simchat Torah flag. I hope that some of you were able to use them at the celebration on Monday night.

 

Week of October 13

It was a “sweet” celebration of Sukkot in Dalet class this week. After reviewing all the essential elements of a Sukkot celebration—including a sukkah with its special requirements, food, and guests (ask your child about the ushpizin—special guests we invite)—each student made their own edible sukkah. Our Madricha, Elena, took some pictures of the sweet treats so later you’ll have a chance to see our delicious creations.

 

 

 

Kitah Hey (5th grade)

 

Week of November 3

What’s in a name? A great deal we decided. We resumed our study of the Jewish life cycle and began exploration of the first thing that marks us as Jewish, our Hebrew name. We read a poem by Zelda that helps us see all the ways in which we are who we are and how we live out our names. We then discussed our Hebrew names and their origins. For homework Hey students are to find out more about the legacy of their Hebrew names. Please share with your child how you chose their Hebrew name, who are they named after—a relative? One of our ancestors? If they are named after a family member please tell your child more about that person. What were they like? What did they like? Did you know them personally? How do you see the person for whom your child is named playing out? We’ll share stories and reflections next time we meet.

 

Week of October 20

Today we visited the topic of the importance of Torah in our lives. It gives us stories of our ancestors and mitzvot by which to live-how lucky we are to be able to read it again and again—and how we wish we could just stay wrapped in Torah all the time . So we did the next best thing—we became a human representation of Torah. We had our own Torah scribe and everyone contributed a piece of the dressing and decoration for the scroll, including the yad. Then , in pairs, students became a human Torah. We finished with a special treat to remind us how “sweet” it is to live a life “wrapped in Torah”.

 

Week of October 13

With the arrival of Sukkot we reviewed how and why we celebrate, then we read the story of Molly’s Pilgrim. Molly discovers that not all pilgrims came to America on the Mayflower and that the American holiday of Thanksgiving owes much to the Jews and our celebration of Sukkot. Ask your child about the Venn diagram we created addressing Sukkot and Thanksgiving.

 

 

 

 

Kitah Vav (6th grade)

 

Week of November 3

Hi Vav Families,

Now that the holidays are over our class was able to take a closer look into our Judaic Studies curriculum.  This week we refreshed on our knowledge of the Israelites escape from Egypt through the arrival at Mt. Sinai.   I was so impressed with your children and their knowledge of the Ten Commandments.  They listed each one and we began discussions on why these were the most important rules for the Israelites to follow. 

Your students also discussed how the commandments relate to us today to compare how they would have compared to the Israelites.  The call did a fantastic job of listening to each other and adding their thoughts to discover a deeper understanding of the Commandments.

There is no Hebrew School for this upcoming Sunday but don’t forget to mark your calendar for Sunday, November 17th when we have the Vav Class’s Family Education.

Please reach out to me at anytime.

Morah Ilene 

 

Week of October 20

This week the students joined the daily minyan at TI and participated in the Hoshana Rabbah service. Students were able to participate in the 7 Hoshana prayers and 7 processions around the chapel (while holding the lulav and etrog) . After, students took the aravot (willow branches) and beat them against a hard surface to strip off some of the leaves. This action represents the shedding of personal wrongdoings and the end of final opportunity to repent during the High Holiday season. It was quite an unique experience. Ask your child(ren) about it.

 

Week of October 13

Morah Ilene

Hi Vav Families!

This past week the class we discussed the holiday of Sukkot. The class first discussed all of the items we may find in a Sukkah and then used this information to discover what Sukkot means, the symbols associated with this holiday and why we celebrate. We compared the holiday of Sukkot to the American tradition of Thanksgiving to further explore the meaning of the holiday. We also talked about the idea of a Sukkah as a temporary home.

The discussion then turned to the Jewish values we find in the holiday of Sukkot. The class listed the Jewish values of welcoming others into our home, unity of the Jewish people, connection to the land of Israel and our relationship with God through prayer and ritual as some of the most important messages we can take from this joyous holiday.

We had a chance to learn each plant that goes into making the lulav. The class was able to see and learn about the lulav and touch and smell the etrog. We then learned the prayer recited before shaking the lulav and etrog together. After this each student had a chance to shake the lulav and etrog.

Next week we will discuss and learn about Simchat Torah. We will also begin our journey through Jewish history. I cannot wait to see your children this Sunday!

 

 

Morah Hayley

Even though it was raining on Sunday, we were able to make it outside to the sukkah! The students were very persistent to see it! We went over how to shake the lulav and etrog and the bracha you say while doing it! We also discussed why we celebrate Sukkot and tried to understand what it would be like to have to live in one for a prolonged period of time. The students also enjoyed our activity about learning about the seven species and why we eat them! Chag Semeach on a joyous Sukkot and I look forward to seeing your children next week!

 

 

 

 

Kitah Zayin (7th grade)

 

Week of November 3

We had another great week in Kitah Zayin!

After Hatikvah, we discussed Parashat Bereshit, Parashat Noach, and Parashat Lech Lecha.

We then went on to start our unit on anti-Semitism. We started class going over what a stereotype was, if they know of any, and is a stereotype actually true. We went on to look at a few stereotypes we have heard about our religion and what some of their origins were. After, students took turns reading the definitions of stereotype, prejudice, discrimination, defamation, bigotry, scapegoating, race, racism, ethnicity, Zionism, hate crime, anti-Semitism, and anti-Zionism.

For each one, students discussed examples they personally have witnessed, things that happened in our history as Jews, and were able to freely ask questions that they had about topics such as the origins of race, are we as Jews a race, religion, and/or and ethnicity, and other discussion points.

Next class, we will begin discussing the history of anti-Semitism, how it ties into modern times, and how to dispute anti-Semitic myths with facts.

 

Week of October 20

We had another great week in Kitah Zayin! This week the students joined the daily minyan at TI and participated in the Hoshana Rabbah service. Students were able to participate in the 7 Hoshana prayers and 7 processions around the chapel (while holding the lulav and etrog) . After, students took the aravot (willow branches) and beat them against a hard surface to strip off some of the leaves. This action represents the shedding of personal wrongdoings and the end of final opportunity to repent during the High Holiday season. It was quite an unique experience. Ask your child(ren) about it.

 

Week of October 13

We had another great week in Kitah Zayin! After singing Hatikvah, students had a discussion about the next Torah reading, which is a selection from Ki Tissa (found in the book of Exodus) and talks about Sukkot. We discussed that this is special Torah reading because it is both Shabbat and Sukkot. The last Torah portion in the book of Devarim is V’zot Habracha, which is read on Simchat Torah. In addition, on Simchat Torah we also restart the yearly cycle of Torah readings and will begin by reading Parashat Bereshit.

After, we reviewed the B’nai Mitzvah Project and each student received the papers for the project (which they should have brought home). If you have any questions about the B’nai Mitzvah project, please email Alan Johnathan at ajohnathan@templeisraelnc.org.

 

 

 

 

Ivrit (Hebrew)

 

Week of November 3

Gimel (3rd) -

 

Dalet (4th) -

Shalom Chavrim,

Toda raba to Morah Karen for teaching the Dalet students in my absent this past Sunday. Students continued their work in the review booklet. Students who completed the booklet advanced to the Mitkadem program. Students picked up where they stopped last year in the program.

Hey (5th) -

 

Vav (6th)- Hebrew and Trope

 

Zayin (7th)-

Shalom Chavrim,

Todah rabbah to Morah Marry-Margaret for teaching the Zain students in my absent this past Sunday. Students continued their work in the Mitkadem program.

 

 

Week of October 20

Gimel (3rd) -

The students had a blast creating their covers for the siddur they will receive at the Class Shabbat on Friday, January 24.

Dalet (4th) -

Shalom Chaverim,

We started class with an overview of sister letters, sister sounds, and vowels. Then, we focused on the vowel sh’vah (short sound/silent). Students learned how to pronounce letters with sh’vah appearing at the beginning of a word (most time it sounds as “eh”) and letters with consecutive sh’vah in a word (first sh’vah as “short sound” and second sh’vah as “eh” sound). We ended class with a word card game. Students were divided into three groups based on their reading level and practiced reading.

Hey (5th) -

Shalom Parents,

In class your children continued working on their Mitkadem program. At the beginning of class we had fun putting signs on different classroom items (desk, chair, bookcase, blackboard, flag, etc), reading and pronouncing them in Hebrew. Shabbat Shalom

 

Vav (6th)- Hebrew and Trope

In Hebrew, students continued working on their Mitkadem booklets.

This week in Trope class we continue to work on Torah Trope and learn to chant the “V’ahavta” with trope. We added the trope notes darga, t’vir, gershayim, and kadma v’azlah. In addition to trope we spent time learning strategies to reading long Hebrew words.

 

Zayin (7th)-

Shalom Chaverim,

Since we have missed several mid-week classes due to holidays, this Sunday we focused on advancing in the Mitkadem program. The students who just started the program and are on Ramah 3 worked together on discussion questions and reading exercises. The rest of the class continued with their individual work.

 

Week of October 13

Gimel (3rd) -

In Kitah Gimel we used our Aleph-Bet Wheels (flashcards with attached vowel wheels) to help us study/memorize our letters & vowels. In addition, our students had to come up with a Hebrew word starting with their letter. We also reviewed the letter Vav and introduced the letter Tet.

 

Dalet (4th) -

Shalom Chaverim,

We began class with a conversation about the holidays: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot. Students shared family traditions and their favorite aspects of celebrating the holidays. We also discussed the similarities and differences in which the holidays are been celebrated in Israel. Then, we reviewed vowels. Students continued their individual work on the review booklet. We ended the class with a short game of Hebrew Bingo.

 

Hey (5th) -

In Kitah Hey we used our Aleph-Bet Wheels (flashcards with attached vowel wheels) to help us study/memorize our letters & vowels. Each student received multiple letters, reviewed all vowels, and came up with words for each letter. Students also started working on their Mitkadem booklets.

 

Vav (6th)-

This past week some students took Mitkadem assessments or studied for upcoming ones! Others worked hard in their binders and completed many activities, helping them get closer to completing their Ramah and taking their assessment!

 

Zayin (7th)-

Shalom Chaverim,

We began class with a conversation about the holidays: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot. Students shared family traditions and their favorite aspects of celebrating the holidays. We also discussed the similarities and differences in which the holidays are been celebrated in Israel. We continued with a short exercise of Hebrew introductions and greetings. We then moved to focus on the Mitkadem program. After a brief overview of Mitkadem for the students who are new to the program, we went over the basic grammar of Ramah (level) 3: שורשים (roots), prefixes, and suffixes.

 

 

 

 

 

Trope (Similar to the Hebrew classes, you will be receiving an update every few weeks)

 

Week of November 3

 

Week of September 15

We had another great Trope Class! Students are beginning to recognize the most frequent Torah Trope and enjoy playing the Trope game. They are also getting to know each other. It’s a wonderful class and we have fun together.

 

Week of September 8

We started our Torah Trope curriculum learning the most frequently used Torah Trope. We’ll be studying Torah Trope throughout the Fall. Our wonderful Madrich, Elliot Kreitman, led our “Sing this Trope” game. Looking forward to a great year together!


 

 

Experiential Education – Tuesday/Wednesday

 

Week of November 3

We had another great week in Experiential Judaism!

We started class discussing Parashat Lech Lecha and how Abraham went on to leave the life he knew to follow God.

This week, we covered B’tzelem Elohim, in God’s image. We started class talking about what God looks like. Answers varied from like us to a bearded old man. Students then learned that God does not have an image for it is beyond us to understand and that God have no physical look. We went on to discuss that according to the mitzvot, we are directed not to make human forms even for decorative purposes. This is in part to us being created B’tzelem Elohim.

We discussed that since we are made in God’s image, the best way to represent that is through our actions. Students were then given a face template to draw themselves. On the opposite side, they wrote how to make sure we are acting “in the image of God.”

 

Week of September 22

We had another great week in Experiential Judaism! This week we covered Shalom, which means peace, hello, and goodbye. We started class explaining Parashat Nitzavim and Moses knowing that the people will betray the teachings of God and suffer hardships, but ultimately, they will return to God’s teachings.

 

Students started the lesson with the question, “What is the most important part of a house?” After a couple of guesses, we decided the foundation is most important because without a strong foundation, you cannot build anything. This is true not only with buildings, but our Jewish and secular education, and most importantly, our mental health. This goes back to the practice in Judaism in which you must be okay before you help your house; your house must be okay before you help the Jewish community, and the Jewish community must be okay before you can help the broader community. Students learned that peace is not only something external to achieve, but also internal. If you are not at peace internally, you will not be able to be as impactful to others.

 

First, students practiced a breathing exercise where they inhaled for 4 seconds and then exhaled for 4 seconds, for a minute. Students learned that when we pray, we have to relax and focus solely on prayer. This breathing exercise can be used to help prepare for prayer by calming down your mind and keeping your breathing in a rhythm. It also can be used when you are anxious, nervous, or just need a moment to calm down.

 

Next, students learned about how Kabbalists, through meditation, “remove themselves” from the physical world and dive into the spiritual world. Then, we started the basics of meditation which is to sit relaxed, relax your eyes and body, and focus only on your breathing.

 

The main point of the lesson was that you cannot fix any part of the house with a broken foundation. You have to start building from the foundation up. If you are trying to better the community as a whole, you have to have a strong mental foundation. You cannot give if you have nothing. We also talked about how when you feel overwhelmed by things mentally, you can talk to parents, teachers, rabbis, school guidance counselors, and others, who want to help you to be whole.

 

Week of September 15

We had another great week in Experiential Judaism! This week we covered Tikkun Olam, repairing the world. We started class explaining Parashat Ki Tavo and how it was part of Moses’ farewell speech explain that as God’s people, we have certain laws and practices we must follow or terrible things will await us as a people. Students then were tasked with trying to make a perfect circle out of masking tape. After a few minutes, we discussed about how this task is not possible since the world has been imperfect since its beginning therefore, we should only strive to do the best we can.

We then talked about Jewish Mysticism and Rabbi Yitzhak ben Shlomo Luria Ashkenazi’s (also known as Ha’Ari), view on the creation of the universe. Students learned the Kabbalistic view that when God breathed in to make room for the creation, he made 4 glass vessels filled with his light. The vessels shattered and the light was hidden throughout the world. It is our job as Jews to reunify the light to create a perfect world. We went on to learn that doing any of the 613 mitzvot helps to repair the world, Tikkun Olam.

The students created a project to symbolize “repairing the world”. Students wrote the words Tikkun Olam on the top of a blank piece of paper and under it they drew the Earth. Below the earth they wrote the words “repairing the world”. Students then cut their drawing into 4 pieces. Each piece had 4 holes punched in them and the students used string to put their drawing back together.

Tue, November 12 2019 14 Cheshvan 5780