Am Yisrael SJS Highlights: Week of March 19, 2017

Limmud Collage 3-24-17

Class Updates: Sun, Mar 19 & Wed Mar 22

Camp Am Yisrael: Learn-By-Play (0-3 year olds)

We will send you a separate email regarding our upcoming Grandparents/Special Visitors Day.  Thank you very much for working with us and sharing your feedback with us as we learn continue to build this play group with you.  We had a lot of fun playing and singing with you this past week.  -Mr. Sherman

Gan (3-6 year olds) 

We read a Sammy Spider book that introduced the holiday of Passover to the children.  I also asked the children if they knew the definition of the words Seder (order) and Haggadah (the book that has the story of Passover in it).  The children finished up their sticker books that was all about performing Mitzvot.  During Tefillah, the children as always enjoyed learning and practicing with Mr. Marc and Mr. Sherman. -Morah Lynn

Aleph (1st Grade) and Bet (2nd Grade)

This week the Aleph and Bet students began learning about Passover. We talked about Elijah the prophet, created a cup for our sedar tables, and began learning how to sing the 4 Questions. The students also got to have a special experience while reading a story with a Dalet buddy after Tefillah. -Mrs. Berlow

Gimel (3rd Grade) 

Shalom Parents,

This was our fourth and final week of hakarat hatov, and our focus was on giving back!

Recap: We recognized the people and places that have helped and supported us and we thought of ways we can give back. We started by reviewing the cards we made for family members and/or friends last week, and talking about how that experience made us feel.  We then participated in a short text study about how actions speak louder than words.  Next, we watched a video about the importance of words and how, when used correctly, they can have a big positive impact.  Finally, we spent time brainstorming ways our students can give back to the community.  We brainstormed mitzvah projects that the students can complete on their own, as well as those projects that they can do with their families.  We will ask students to update us on their progress throughout the rest of the year.


Table Talk: Discuss ways your student and you will “give back.”

MyShalomLearning Activity for next week: 3.6.1 Koach Hadibbur Week 1 

Login to My.ShalomLearning.org and watch the video in preparation for the next lesson.  While you watch the video, reflect on the following: How did the kids “give back” to others? Who and where were the kids helping?

Next week:

Next week we will introduce the concept of Koach HaDibbur, translated as “The power of speech.”  Students will get to know the meaning of the phrase and how it relates to the previous values they have learned thus far this year.  The students have a chance to create their own brit, a contract for how to use their own speech.

Ivrit:

This week the students delved into the Haggadah, the book we use during the Passover seder.  The students took an in-depth look at the 4 Questions (the Ma Nishtanah) and both read and sang these.  Please have you student practice these every day at home. 

Additionally, we continued to work on the V’ahavta and the Vayomer.

Lastly, we took an in-depth look at the Amidah prayer, and how it relates to our topic of Hakarat Hatov.

Have a great week!  Please note that there is no SJS on Sunday, March 26, Wednesday, March 29 or Sunday, April 2 for Spring break.  We will resume SJS on Wednesday, April 5.

B’Shalom,

Mrs. Sender and Morah Myra

Dalet (4th Grade)

After a quick review of Moses’ encounter with the burning bush, we went through an exercise in pairs. Each partner described a time when they saw something unusual and how they reacted. After both partners had described their experiences, they considered the differences and similarities between their own experiences and Moses’, then talked about which one was more similar. Exercises like this allow us to empathize with the characters of the Torah and internalize their narratives.  -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

We studied the story of Pesach and the names of the holiday.   We also looked at the importance of freedom for human beings and the preparation for the holiday, 

בדיקת חמץ                                                             ביעור חמץ                                                                מכירת חמץ

Finally, we discussed the decree of King Pharaoh killing every Israelite boy in the river.  We also looked at the 10th plague; the killing of the first born.  We practiced the Kiddush and I showed the students that two of the traditional four names of the holiday are in it.  -Mrs. Moustakis     

Heh (5th Grade)

Students enumerated, in writing, the ways in which they are blessed: their abilities, relationships, and property. Students then considered ways in which they could potentially use their own blessings to help alleviate food insecurity in the community around them. This is the beginning of a project that will expand over the next few weeks (spring break aside), and hopefully extend into the home. -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

This past week in Ta’amei haMiqra, the students studied a sheet with the names of all the Torah trope. -Mr. Lerner

We spoke about Pesach literally as how G-d passed over certain homes and the symbol of the blood on the doorposts of the Israelite’s homes.  We made the connection of how today we have the mezuzah to declare a Jewish home.  I wish everyone a healthy and safe vacation.  -Mrs. Moustakis     

We reviewed the 14 steps of the seder and also the ten plagues in Hebrew. First, we read them together, and then each student read them on his own.   -Morah Anna & Mrs. Rosenfeld

Vav (6th Grade)

Students continued to practice reading from our siddur. The rule for this class was to avoid pieces of liturgy we already know very well, which are easy to read but not necessarily the best avenues for growth. Some groups of students fanned out into the hallway and nearby vacant classrooms so that everyone could practice out loud without interfering with other groups. -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

This past week in Yeshivat B’nai Mitzvah, the students studied a sheet with the names of all the Torah trope. -Mr. Lerner

Today we started to learn about Passover. We learned how Joseph chose the land of Goshen for the Jewish people to settle in. We also spoke about the power Joseph had in Egypt and how a Jew was “like Pharaoh.”  We continued our Israel unit learning about the founder of modern Zionism, Theodor Herzl. We will continue next week learning what motivated him and all his accomplishments. -Mr. Arnet 

Zayin (7th Grade)

This week most of our students had the chance to give their hero presentations. We heard about an impressive range of politicians, activists, civil servants, and artists who made a difference in the world. I am looking forward to class two weeks from now, when those who did not have a chance to present will get their opportunity. -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Today we started to learn about Passover. We learned how Joseph chose the land of Goshen for the Jewish people to settle in. We also spoke about the power Joseph had in Egypt and how a Jew was “like Pharaoh.”  We continued our Israel unit learning about the founder of modern Zionism, Theodor Herzl. We will continue next week learning what motivated him and all his accomplishments. -Mr. Arnet 

Prozdor (8th Grade)

Today we started to learn about Passover. We learned how Joseph chose the land of Goshen for the Jewish people to settle in. We also spoke about the power Joseph had in Egypt and how a Jew was “like Pharaoh.”  We continued our Israel unit learning about the founder of modern Zionism, Theodor Herzl. We will continue next week learning what motivated him and all his accomplishments.  I asked the kids to please write two paragraphs about Theodor Herzl. There will be a reward for any or all the kids who take the time to learn about Theodor Herzl and all he accomplished.  -Mr. Arnet 

Pardes (9th Grade)

The guest speaker at the JUF brunch was Jane Eisner, editor of The Forward.  She spoke of the increase in antisemitic incidents nationwide and the numerous hate-filled e-mails that she has recently received.  She attributed much of this venom to the election of Donald Trump, his anti-immigrant rhetoric and recent hires, like Steve Bannon.                    -Cantor Simon

Am Yisrael SJS Highlights: Week of March 12, 2017

Limmud Collage 3-17-17

Thanks to all who celebrated Purim with us.  The Megillah Reading and Carnival Festivities were a huge success.  On the whole, people had an amazing time, a lot of positive Jewish memories were created and friendships were started and/or further built!  We have a very special community and we don’t take this for granted.  The biggest successes comes when we have large numbers of staff, teachers, madrichim, youth groups/leaders, students and volunteers planning and/or facilitating our programming together and that was clearly the case for Purim 5777!

The Ark pantry would like to offer sincere thanks to you for your generous Purim Matanot L’Evyonim donations. They are greatly appreciated by the clients of  the Ark whom the pantry serves. Am Yisrael has consistently been a very generous donor through the years, and the most recent donations continue this most worthwhile and necessary tradition. Once again, many thanks.

Mazal Tov to our costume contest winner Michael Lieber and to those who had the best guesses of how many toys were in the jar.  For those who were part of those competitions, Evan Lieber won the contest of guessing how many toys were in the jar: 141 and Drew Weiss won the contest of guessing how many candies were in the jar: 150.  -Mr. Sherman

Class Updates: Wed, Mar 15

Gimel (3rd Grade) 

Shalom Parents,

This week we continued with the second lesson in the unit for Hakarat HaTov.  We discussed Jewish rituals and texts that focus on showing gratitude for ourselves and our families. We recited a bracha or blessing before or after a special event. The students explored this as a way to demonstrate gratitude and recognize good things about even mundane activities. The students created their own prayers to thank G-d for those things that make them feel grateful. The students learned about the Shehecheyanu, a blessing that thanks G-d for bringing us to a special moment in our lives, such as a life-cycle event.

Recap:

·       Students learned that Judaism gives us blessings to say for the world around us.

·       Students learned common and uncommon blessings we use in our everyday lives.

·       Students created ways in which they can show gratitude to their families.

Table Talk: Do we have any prayer rituals as a family? How can we incorporate Jewish prayer into our lives?

 

MyShalomLearning Activity for next week: 3.5.3 Hakarat HaTov Week 3 

Login to My.ShalomLearning.org and watch the video in preparation for the next lesson by listening for “kinds of ingredients” and how they are put into “family soup.” Write down your own recipe for “family soup”, answering the question of what ingredients (and how much of them) that you need to make a good “family soup?”

Ivrit (Hebrew):

               This week the students continued to work on their understanding of the Shema, focusing on their reading and comprehension of the first and third paragraphs.  The yeladim worked as a larger group this week, supporting each other with their Hebrew reading and letter-vowel identification.  The students also looked at some prayers we recite during the shacharit (morning) service – this was done in conjunction with our Jewish Studies topic Hakarat Hatov.  The students read the basic structure or “building blocks” of the blessings, and then we broke down the ending of these blessings.

Next week:

In next week’s session we will focus on family relationships.  Students will take time to think about all of their family members, and reflect on the support and love they get from them.

Have a great week!

B’Shalom,

Mrs. Sender and Morah Myra

Dalet (4th Grade)

This week we reviewed reading many prayers during class.  I tested the students reading the Shira Chadasha paragraph.  Our focus with all of these prayers is getting Kitah Dalet ready to lead the congregation during services on Sunday morning, May 7 at 9:15 a.m.  As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  To access the prayers that we are studying, please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the 1st prayer “Morning Blessings,” the 2nd prayer “Baruch She’amar,” the 5th prayer “Chatzi Kaddish,” the 6th prayer Barchu, the 9th prayer “Sh’ma, V’Ahavta,” the 10th prayer “Vayomer” and the 11th prayer “Mi Chamocha, Tsur Yisrael.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies. -Mrs. Moustakis          

Heh (5th Grade)

This week we worked on the Friday Night Kiddush.  As part of our studies we counted how many times the Hebrew word with the root “Kuf Dalet Shin” appears in the Kiddush.  We discussed why this word is so important (Kadosh = holy).  After much discussion, the main idea is that G-d wants us to make the Shabbat Holy because we should be holy with the Mitzvot.  Following this we reviewed the songs Rabbi Akiva, Gesher Tzar Me’od and we started to learn about the song “Ani V’Atta” and how you and I can change the world with the Middot (Jewish Values) that the students are learning with Mr. Sender.  As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  To access the Friday Night Kiddush, please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website:  https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the final prayer on this web page “Friday Night Kiddush.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies. -Mrs. Moustakis     

Shalom,

We reviewed the letters and sounds and moved on to working on reading, while playing reading game.  For the easiest access to review the Hebrew letters and sounds, please go to the Hebrew Step-By-Step page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/hebrew-step-by-step.html. As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  To access the Friday Night Kiddush, please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website:  https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the final prayer on this web page “Friday Night Kiddush.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies.Thank you, Morah Anna & Ms. Rosenfeld

Vav (6th Grade)

In the wake of our wonderful Purim carnival, there were many (many, many) materials to be sorted, catalogued, and put away. Vav and Zayin put on their clean-up crew hats and stowed away everything we used, labeled and organized so that next year’s carnival setup will go smoothly and quickly. Great job, everyone! -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

This week our Vav students continued our discussion about what life was like inside the ghettos during the Holocaust.  We heard video testimony of the conditions in the ghetto as well as what it was like when the ghetto was liquidated.  Please note that we recognize the sensitivity of this topic and great care is put into presenting the Holocaust age-appropriately.  -Morah Sandra

Zayin (7th Grade)

As we are nearing the end of our gevurah unit, we spent this class preparing presentations on individuals we consider heroic. Beginning next week, students will be giving (approximately) five-minute presentations explaining who their chosen hero is, why they were chosen, and what they did or do to help others. Students have been working hard in this, and I am looking forward to some of the interesting and creative presentations to come.  In the wake of our wonderful Purim carnival, there were many (many, many) materials to be sorted, catalogued, and put away. Vav and Zayin put on their clean-up crew hats and stowed away everything we used, labeled and organized so that next year’s carnival setup will go smoothly and quickly. Great job, everyone!  -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Am Yisrael SJS Highlights: Week of March 5, 2017

Limmud Collage 3-10-17

Class Updates: Sun, Mar 5 & Wed, Mar 8

Camp Am Yisrael: Learn-By-Play (0-3 year olds)

We are consistently getting to see lots of parents and tots each Sunday.  This Sunday the fun continued with Cantor Simon, Mr. Marc and I getting a chance to sing with the families in between the story and playtime.  We look forward to celebrating Purim on Sunday and hope that parents and tots will come to Am Yisrael wearing fun costumes. -Mr. Sherman

Gan (3-6 year olds)

We reviewed the story of Purim with a lively discussion.  The children created their very own hamantaschen people, which turned out terrific.  Shira was filled with lots of ruach (spirit) by the children and Cantor Simon.  Tefillah was a big hit as always with Mr. Sherman and Mr. Marc.  -Morah Lynn

Aleph (1st Grade)

This week the Aleph class continued learning about Purim. They learned about the town  of Shushan, in which the story of Purim took place, what the Hebrew date of Purim is (14th of Adar), and how the date of Purim was chosen (it was the day that Haman wanted to get back at Mordecai for not bowing down to him). Students also finished their packet and continued to learn about the different types of mitzvot we can perform on Purim. We look forward to celebrating Purim next! Remember to dress up for the costume contest!                  -Mrs. Berlow

Bet (2nd Grade)

Shalom,  Kitah Bet had a very fun and productive day. We continued learning about Purim, made a classroom Megillah and learned about the four mitzvot of Purim. The students enjoyed playing Purim Trivia, sang their harts out during Tefillah and did an awesome job during the Hebrew Step-by-Step segment of the day.  The easiest way to access Hebrew Step-By-Step is by clicking on this link: https://www.amyisrael.org/hebrew-step-by-step.html. The Purim Carnival is taking place this Sunday, March 12.  Please get ready to have fun, play games and I can’t wait to see all of the costumes.  Be Happy its Adar!             -Morah Anna

Gimel (3rd Grade) 

The Gimel Class had a huge milestone this past week.  The students were up on the bimah with Mrs. Sender and Morah Myra singing their hearts out at Friday evening services.  At the end of the service, the Rabbi, Cantor, teachers and I presented the students with their own copy of Siddur Lev Shalem.  We hope and pray that the students will continue to grown in their knowledge of the prayers, which have contemporary commentaries for many years to come.  Please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies.    -Mr. Sherman

On Wednesday afternoon I met individually with students who are slated to help us read Megillat Ester on Sunday morning in order to evaluate their work and provide them with some last-minute coaching. I was quite impressed with the progress made by these young people, many of whom have never read megillah before. Looking forward to Sunday morning! -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.) 

Dalet (4th Grade)

Following up on a conversation from our past deveykut session, we watched the scene from The Prince of Egypt in which Moses encounters the burning bush. We used this as a jumping off point to discuss what God was trying to communicate and why God chose this symbol. For art, the students created their own renditions of the symbol they would have chosen for the same purpose.  On Wednesday afternoon I met individually with students who are slated to help us read Megillat Ester on Sunday morning in order to evaluate their work and provide them with some last-minute coaching. I was quite impressed with the progress made by these young people, many of whom have never read megillah before. Looking forward to Sunday morning!  -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

The students saw a video of the Purim Play the our students performed three years ago.   Here is a link to the play: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTjxRoJymSI   Toby was happy to see his sister Helen in the play. We then discussed the danger that they Jews faced outside of their own land.  The name of G-d is not mentioned in the Megilah.  There is a power of prayer and Kavanah.  Finally, we practiced the Ashrei.  As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  To access “Ashrei,” please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the 18th prayer “Ashrei.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies. -Mrs. Moustakis          

Heh (5th Grade)

Kitah Heh had a lovely Brunch and Family Education with Rabbi Newman Kamin this past week.  The families continued the discussions that the class has been having related to the concept of Achrayut, the responsibility that we have to make the world a better place.  Thank you to all of the families for bringing in food for the potluck brunch.                                -Mr. Sherman

Students spent their time in havruta studying a passage from the Book of Proverbs and a rabbinic commentary on it, both describing what one ought to give to God. The key item, whether literal or metaphorical is “your first crops.” Based on the worksheet’s questions, students engaged with this instruction and its possible range of meanings while relating it back to our study of Ruth a few weeks ago.  On Wednesday afternoon I met individually with students who are slated to help us read Megillat Ester on Sunday morning in order to evaluate their work and provide them with some last-minute coaching. I was quite impressed with the progress made by these young people, many of whom have never read megillah before. Looking forward to Sunday morning! -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

For the easiest access to review the Hebrew letters and sounds, please go to the Hebrew Step-By-Step page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/hebrew-step-by-step.html  Thank you, Morah Anna & Ms. Rosenfeld

The students came from Mr. Sender’s class learning about Achdut-אחדות I connected to the Achdut of the people at Shushan to Fast & pray with Esther to save all the Jews.  The students saw a video of the Purim Play that our students performed three years ago.   Here is a link to the play: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTjxRoJymSILauren, Roan, Ethan and  Jeremy were so happy to see their siblings in the play.  I want to wish everyone a Healthy, Happy and safe Purim. -Mrs. Moustakis

Vav (6th Grade)

This past week in B’nai Mitzvah Academy, we continue our study of Torah trope.  We also briefly discussed the story of Purim, asking the question:  Is this story Fact?  Fiction?  Historical Fiction? -Mr. Lerner

We took out a little time to review about Rosh Chodesh as well as the story of Purim. The kids seem so mesmerized by Purim even though I am sure they learn about it each year. We also continued along in our Israel unit. We started to learn about Zionism and what it means to have a homeland. Please ask your child what the definition of home is. See you at the Megillah Reading and Carnival! -Mr. Arnet

On Wednesday afternoon I met individually with students who are slated to help us read Megillat Ester on Sunday morning in order to evaluate their work and provide them with some last-minute coaching. I was quite impressed with the progress made by these young people, many of whom have never read megillah before. Looking forward to Sunday morning! -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Zayin (7th Grade)

We took out a little time to review about Rosh Chodesh as well as the story of Purim. The kids seem so mesmerized by Purim even though I am sure they learn about it each year. We also continued along in our Israel unit. We started to learn about Zionism and what it means to have a homeland. Please ask your child what the definition of home is. See you at the Megillah Reading and Carnival! -Mr. Arnet

On Wednesday afternoon I met individually with students who are slated to help us read Megillat Ester on Sunday morning in order to evaluate their work and provide them with some last-minute coaching. I was quite impressed with the progress made by these young people, many of whom have never read megillah before. Looking forward to Sunday morning! -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Prozdor (8th Grade)

We took out a little time to review about Rosh Chodesh as well as the story of Purim. We also continued along in our Israel unit. We started to learn about Zionism and what it means to have a homeland. Please ask your child what the definition of home is.See you at the Megillah Reading and Carnival! -Mr. Arnet

Pardes (9th-10th Grades)

As we watched a film about the history of Maxwell Street in Chicago, we talked about the immigrant population that settled in that area and made a living there.  It opened the door to a discussion of the students’ ancestors, where they came from and how they supported themselves when they first arrived.  Shockingly many of the students had no idea.  So, parents, please talk to your children and tell them their family histories.  It will hopefully give them an appreciation for all they have.  -Cantor Simon

Am Yisrael SJS Highlights: Week of Feb 26

limmud-collage-3-3-17

Class Updates: Sun, Feb 26 & Wed, Mar 1

Camp Am Yisrael: Learn-By-Play (0-3 year olds)

We are ecstatic about the turnouts for Camp Am Yisrael!  What an awesome addition to our congregational community!  We can’t wait to see the little kiddos and their parents each and every week!  -Mr. Sherman

Gan (3-6 year olds)

We began a discussion of the upcoming holiday Purim.  As I explained to the children, Queen Esther was brave and we went around the room telling each other a time we were brave.  We worked on our sticker book about performing Mitzvot (the plural of Mitzvah).  The children enjoyed Tefillah with Mr. Marc. -Morah Lynn

Aleph (1st Grade)

This week students began focusing on the holiday of Purim. The students learned about how Vashti stood up for herself when the King asked her to dance.  We also discussed how Mordecai would not bow down to Haman because Jews only bow to G-d, and how Queen Esther showed her bravery by saving the Jews from Haman’s plan.  The Aleph students also learned about the letter “Nun.” -Mrs. Berlow

Bet (2nd Grade)

Shalom, today Kitah Bet was very busy learning about Purim. We read the story of Purim and used puppets to act out the play. We discussed the main characters of the story and what it means to be brave. Also we discussed the upcoming Purim Carnival at our school, costumes and games that we will be playing.  -Morah Anna

Gimel (3rd Grade)

 

This week we started the unit for Hakarat HaTov, the 5th unit in the ShalomLearning curriculum.  As we looked at the value of Hakarat Hatov, we wanted our students to find specific quirks or character traits that wouldn’t necessarily be noticed as “good” unless we call them out.

Recap:

·        Students learned the value of Hakarat HaTov, translated as “recognizing the good.”

·        Students connected the past value of Achrayut to our current value, using the power of meditation to calm their minds and focus on what is good around them right now.

·        Students discovered that as God created the world, “God saw that it was Good.” This is a good foundation for text study.

Table Talk: How does recognizing the good in others help us to learn more about ourselves?  How can meditation help us to recognize the good around us? 

MyShalomLearning Activity: 3.5.2 for next week Hakarat Hatov Week 2

Time to meditate: Some people share what they are thinking either in poems, stories, songs, or conversations. Try to meditate now and share what you are grateful for in any kind of form you prefer. You can record yourself in a video and upload it, you can write a poem, a song, or even a short story. Upload your work to My.ShalomLearning.org!

Ivrit:

This week the Gimel class focused their attention on the V’ahavta (the first paragraph of the Shema).  The yeladim also engaged in Hebrew letter – yoga, shaping their bodies into our Hebrew letters!

Next week:

We will talk about Jewish rituals and texts that discuss showing gratitude for ourselves and for our families. We will start with the ritual of saying a bracha or blessing after reaching a special event – the Shehecheyanu

Have a great week!

B’Shalom,

Mrs. Sender and Morah Myra

 

Dalet (4th Grade)

Dear Parents,

This week we focused on the idea that humans have an innate sense of possession.  The Jewish people do not attempt to deny this natural tendency but uses ritual to help moderate the default setting that, unbridled, leads to greed and jealousy.  The Jewish idea is that while we have the right to own and derive benefit from our possessions, we are responsible to share what we have to help others.  This is a fundamental idea to grasp prior to being able to fully understand the importance of giving tzedakah

Recap:

        Students recognized how wealthy they are in comparison to the rest of the world.

        Students should now view tzedakah as an obligation, not as charity.

        Students should now consider their responsibility to give to others.

        Students learned from their peers about why they give.

 

Table Talk: Discuss with the responses in Rabbi Manis Friedman’s video “Why Do You Give?” and in your own video.  Which answers did you find the most interesting?  Has this project changed why or how much you would give?  In your opinion, which charities should we give to?  Do you believe in the idea that everything in the world belongs to God, and that it is our responsibility, therefore, to share what we have with others?

My.ShalomLearning.org Activity for next week: 4.4.4 Achrayut Week 4  

Next week:

Next week we fill focus on how we are fortunate to have our needs met.  This creates a responsibility to help those people who do not have their needs met.

Have a great week!

Sincerely,

Marc Sender          

In a break from our usual curriculum, the Dalet class spent much of our time developing ideas for our Purim carnival booths. Students brainstormed options for the three booths, then put them to a plural vote with each student allowed to vote as many as three times. Once our choices were confirmed, we divided up to plan and create posters, a process that began in out class and continued in the art studio during the following period. -Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

We had a great conversation about Megillat Esther which will be read in a little over a week for Purim.  We focused our prayer study on “Vayomer,” and discussed the meaning of the prayer. As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  We also started our discussion of the Avot and Emahot from the Amidah.  To access “Vayomer,” please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the 10th prayer “Vayomer.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies. -Mrs. Moustakis
          

Heh (5th Grade)

 

Dear Parents,

This week we continued our work in our unit of Achrayut, we focused on: How can the value of achrayut come to life in a community?

Recap:

      Students learned about various models of achrayut in communities

      Students applied what they have learned about achrayut to a “sim city” model community (a kibbutz/communal living arrangement of their creative design) and their own class.

      Students created their own model community and presented them to the class

Table Talk: Discuss what you would have in your model community.  What would the jobs be?  Who would make more/less?  How would needs be met

MyShalomLearning:

For Next Week:

·         Week 4 Questions for Achrayut 

Next Week: We wrap up our unit on Achrayut

Have a great week!

Sincerely,

Marc Sender

We reviewed what we had learned during the previous lesson when we read through a play based on the book of Ruth. Students began to address the questions of how this story treats food insecurity, both from the perspective of people experiencing it and people interacting with them. We also explored some of the Torah-based rules that form the background of “Ruth,” including which parts of a cultivated field must be left for the poor.-Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

This past week, the Heh students continued to work on Torah Trope and the Torah reading for the next SFP which will be taking place on Saturday April 22. -Mr. Lerner

The students worked on “Mi Chamocha,” “Hashkiveinu” and the “V’sham’ru” prayers. We practice reading and discussed the meaning of the prayers. We talked about praying with kavanah (intention), when “Mi Chamoha” was said first time and why “the children of Israel shall guard the Shabbat.  For the easiest access to review the Hebrew letters and sounds, please go to the Hebrew Step-By-Step page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/hebrew-step-by-step.html  Thank you, Morah Anna & Ms. Rosenfeld

We reviewed and discussed the meaning of two songs: “Amar Rabbi Akiva” and “Gesher Tzar M’od”  We talked about the importance of taking the right path in life and to do our best to find a balance in everything that we do.  As always, please continue to practice the prayers at home.  To access the prayers, please go to the “Practicing Tefillah” page of our website: https://www.amyisrael.org/practicing-tefillah.html and click on the 11th prayer “Mi Chamocha and Tzur Yisrael.”  Please Click on the name of the prayer to listen to the mp3 and the page number in our Siddur Lev Shalem is listed.  For easy access, if you do not have a copy of our Siddur with you, please click next to the name of the prayer on the word “Text” for a PDF of the page in the Am Yisrael SJS Siddur, that we use in our classes in the School of Jewish Studies. -Mrs. Moustakis

Vav (6th Grade)

This past week, the Vav students continued to work on Torah Trope and the Torah reading for the next SFP which will be taking place on Saturday April 22. -Mr. Lerner

Today in Vav and Zayin we learned about the month of Adar and why this month is such a joyous month. We started to review the story of Purim. Lastly, we learned that the Jewish people are many times compared to the moon. Please ask your child why that is.                   -Mr. Arnet

We combined classes for a special Purim-planning session. Students took inventory of the games and other supplies that we already have at our disposal. This was followed by a very productive and thoughtful conversation about how we could expand this year’s Purim carnival programming to ensure that it is a fun, educational, and overall positive experience for as many members of our community as possible.-Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Zayin (7th Grade)

This week the students discussed current events relating to the local Jewish community, the Jewish community on a National-scale, and the Jewish community from a global perspective.  The students looked at the most recent news on antisemitism, and discussed whether there is an increase in antisemitism or if existing covert antisemitism has become more overt?  The students discussed their role in putting an end to antisemitism through education: knowledge is power.  

B’Shalom,

Mrs. Sender

Today in Vav and Zayin we learned about the month of Adar and why this month is such a joyous month. We started to review the story of Purim. Lastly, we learned that the Jewish people are many times compared to the moon. Please ask your child why that is.                   -Mr. Arnet

We combined classes for a special Purim-planning session. Students took inventory of the games and other supplies that we already have at our disposal. This was followed by a very productive and thoughtful conversation about how we could expand this year’s Purim carnival programming to ensure that it is a fun, educational, and overall positive experience for as many members of our community as possible.-Hazzan Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

Prozdor (8th Grade)

Purim was in full swing in our class today. We were designing games for the upcoming Purim Carnival. It is so nice to see the creativity this class has and such a willingness to help. Being Rosh Chodesh adar, we also learned about the moon and how the Jewish people are often compared to the moon. Please ask your child what the moon and the Jewish people have in common. -Mr. Arnet

Pardes (9th-10th Grades)

Among the multiple subjects covered in last Sunday’s class session was Israeli innovation in health care, as presented in a 12 minute video. One of the devices shown was patterned after the olfactory sense of canines in detecting the presence of cancer.  It took this same sense, incorporated and fine-tuned it into an electronic medical device.  Once again a tiny country surpasses all others in technological breakthroughs.  -Cantor Simon

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