Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Last post of 2012!

For our final day of Religious School at TBT in 2012, classes were hard at work on some really important topics.

Seventh graders read pages 17-19 in the Prayer Companion book to practice their reading of the Avot prayer and reviewed the root words they have been studying!  (Take a look at Sunday's post to see the words)  Students also read and discussed this week's Torah portion, Vayigash.  I was able to join the class as they continued their study of the Holocaust, reviewing chapter 4 from their text book.  Students used the reproduced primary sources and excerpts from the text to discuss aspects of the Holocaust, including the Einstazgruppen, but then talked about the various and numerous Righteous Helpers, such as Oskar Schindler, the inspiration for the movie, Schindler's List.  As always, the students were thoughtful and respectful in their discussion.

The sixth graders spent their time studying famous Jews from American History after having read Chapter 4 from their text book on the men and women they learned about in greater detail today.  Students read about Emma Lazarus, Uriah P. Levy, Levi Strauss, and David Belasco.  They answered questions about their individual histories and how being Jewish helped shape their lives.  They also were able to spend a little bit of time reviewing their Hebrew skills after the children read one of Emma Lazarus's poems, The New Colossus.

The New Colossus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

The fifth grade spent half of their day working on Hebrew, reading the Yotzeir Or in partners and as a class. They were able to show off their skills when I stopped in, and I was impressed with by their skills!  Students have homework to practice reading the Yotzeir Or over vacation.  We suggested reading the prayer each day during at least two commercial breaks to stay on top of their skills.  Students also talked about becoming a B'Nei Mitzvah.  Their substitute, Jess, was able to tell the students about Mtizvah projects, and as a twin herself, let the twins in the classroom know how a B'Nei Mitzvah (when there is more than one person on the bimah) works at TBT!

The third and fourth graders spent their day working on Hebrew as well.  Students have been learning the days of the week in Hebrew as well as the numbers from 0-10!  Ms. Besser has sent kids home with vocabulary sheets to study and practice the days of the week and numbers 0-10.  (Don't worry parents, She also sent home a "cheat sheet" with transliterations to allow you to help your child study!)  Students also need to continue to practice the two lines of Modeh Ani pictured below and included in their text book on page 58, lines 2 and 3.

On behalf of the entire TBTRS, have a lovely vacation and a Happy New Year!  We'll see you all again on Sunday, January 6th!

-Miss Nancy Kahrimanis

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Final Day of Chanukkah!

It has been a pleasure celebrating Chanukkah with everyone this year!  From the first day last Sunday as we celebrated as a school, to today as classes continued with one another, it has been more fun than I can imagine!

The Confirmation Class lighting candles on the First day of Chanukkah.

And again with many more candles on the Last day of Chanukkah!  The Confirmation Class also completed a Chanukkah quiz with some rather difficult questions!  Ask your 9th grader which area of Israel produces the most olives!  (Don't worry, I wasn't sure either!)

It's been yummy too!  I've probably had more latkes this year than I have in the last five years!  (I guess that is one of the benefits of being Principal and visiting each celebration!)

Today, after completing their classroom work and after music, First and Second graders joined together to make some really incredible latkes, color dreidels, play games, and spend time together!  The kids had a blast!  Thank you to our teachers that organized the day and our parent volunteer as well!

The Third and Fourth grade class celebrated Chanukkah and had a great time!  Again, many thanks to the parent volunteers to helped make the party happen and to Ms Besser who not only knows how to throw a party, but has the best Chanukkah sweater I've ever seen!

Fifth graders were joined by a substitute as they worked on lifecycle events and Hebrew.  The students practiced their Chanukkah blessings for the last time and worked on the Yotzeir Or.  

The Sixth graders worked on Hebrew roots, reviewed homework on Al Hanisim, and had a discussion on "what is Holy."  Their homework is to read chapter 4 in their "Let Freedom Ring" text book.  This will serve to prepare them for Wednesday's lesson as they begin researching famous Jewish personalities.

The seventh grade class made flashcards and reviewed Hebrew roots as they read today.  They also practiced the Avot prayer in class, reading, translating, and interpreting the prayer as a group.

The Eighth grader discussed the famous Kitty Genovese story and talked about the bystander effect.  Students were able to engage in meaningful conversation about the roles we should play in doing what is right.

Music was a blast as each class had the opportunity to practice the songs we would later sing at Tefilah!  We had a special treat today as the third and fourth graders led us in a lively rendition of the Maccabeats, Candlelight!

Please note that 3rd-7th graders will meet for classes this Wednesday, but at the close of class, we begin our Winter Break.  Classes will resume Sunday, January 6th.  Thanks for celebrating Chanukkah with us this year!

Menorah created this past Shabbat by our young students!

-Miss Nancy Kahrimanis