Zayin Class Updates 2017-2018 (5778)

Zayin Class Update Week of May 6, 2018

Please note that our final day of SJS for this school year is Sun, May 20.  We hope that many children will join their students.  There is also a catered Shavuot kiddush lunch.  Students who are in Zayin will be helping to lead services in the Sanctuary beginning at 9:30 a.m. sharp.  Please be sure to RSVP if you would like to join us: http://evite.me/6NP7Pm3eVY

Zayin has  been assigned to bring regular or herbal tea for the end of the year Am Yisrael SJS Food Drive to support the clients of the Ark.  Please note that you are welcome to bring any item, we have just found that assigning specific items helps with the variety of foods that we receive for these food drives.

Class Updates:

We finished the film Rashi: A Light After the Dark Ages. It presents a series of biographical vignettes about Rashi (Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki) the pre-eminent commentator on the Torah and Babylonian Talmud and a major figure in European Jewish life during the Middle Ages. It sparked some interesting conversations about medieval Jewish history, the historic Jewish attitude toward education (that it should be interesting and enjoyable, rather than enforced strictly through harsh discipline), and Rashi’s life itself. Written Thu, May 10, 2018

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

Zayin Class Update Week of Apr 29, 2018

Please note that our final day of SJS for this school year is Sun, May 20.  We hope that many children will join their students.  There is also a catered Shavuot kiddush lunch.  Students who are in Zayin will be helping to lead services in the Sanctuary beginning at 9:30 a.m. sharp.  Please be sure to RSVP if you would like to join us: http://evite.me/6NP7Pm3eVY

Zayin has  been assigned to bring regular or herbal tea for the end of the year Am Yisrael SJS Food Drive to support the clients of the Ark.  Please note that you are welcome to bring any item, we have just found that assigning specific items helps with the variety of foods that we receive for these food drives.

Using a BimBam video as a jumping-off point, we learned about this week’s long double-parasha with a focus on the role of the Israelite priesthood. We discussed how leadership by hereditary priests is different from our contemporary, meritocratic model of Jewish community leadership. We also addressed the challenging story of Nadav and Avihu, the two sons of Aaron the High Priest who die after offering a “strange fire” to God in the Tabernacle. What might they have done, and why did they receive this response?  Written Thu, Apr 26, 2018

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The students picked a city/area of Israel. They read about their area and come up with the relevant statistics (ie. population, area, climate) as well as facts for each area. We put them on cards and attached them to the map of Israel in our classroom.  Written Sun, Apr 22, 2018

 

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

 

Zayin Class Update Week of Apr 22, 2018

Using a BimBam video as a jumping-off point, we learned about this week’s long double-parasha with a focus on the role of the Israelite priesthood. We discussed how leadership by hereditary priests is different from our contemporary, meritocratic model of Jewish community leadership. We also addressed the challenging story of Nadav and Avihu, the two sons of Aaron the High Priest who die after offering a “strange fire” to God in the Tabernacle. What might they have done, and why did they receive this response?  Written Thu, Apr 26, 2018

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The students picked a city/area of Israel. They read about their area and come up with the relevant statistics (ie. population, area, climate) as well as facts for each area. We put them on cards and attached them to the map of Israel in our classroom.  Written Sun, Apr 22, 2018

 

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

 

Zayin Class Update Week of Apr 15, 2018

The Yom Hashoah program commemorated the 75th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, the single most important act of Jewish physical resistance during the Holocaust and the first urban rebellion anywhere in Nazi occupied Europe. The program emphasized the motivation of the ghetto fighters and the some 50,000 civilian residents still alive in the ghetto to go to their deaths resisting-to die with dignity. Since the Prozdor and Pardes classes are engaged in a unit of study focused on Jewish heroes, the program included information about two notable ones connected with the uprising. The first was Barbara Steiner who worked making weapons and tending the wounded during the rebellion. She was captured and miraculously survived Majdanek concentration camp and two slave labor camps. Mrs. Steiner and her family ultimately came to Chicago where she and other survivors founded the Holocaust Memorial Foundation of Illinois, the forerunner of the current museum. The second hero was Mordechai Anielewicz, the Zionist leader of the uprising who sought to uphold the honor of the Jewish people but perished along with many others in the rebellion. He was the heart and soul of this act of courage. Students did a very fine job summarizing Mordechai’s short life and achievements during the commemoration, which also included a presentation by Dr. Lefkovitz, musical renditions by Cantor Simon and thoughts from Rabbi Newman Kamin. Written by Dr. Elliot Lefkovitz Thu, Apr 19, 2018

On Wednesday we had an amazing time with combined classes learning about Israel Independence Day as well as Israel Day of Remembrance. The kids got to hear part of the Israeli constitution being read.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxzR9Z-kG6Q

The short video above is the latest of a chain of “mass singing social initiative” performances in Israel, from Koolulam- founded only a few months ago by three young Israelis, who believe that “singing is believing”. They have successfully brought together hundreds, and thousands, of total strangers, of all ages and backgrounds, in performances throughout Israel, including one performance with 3,000 Jews and Arabs.

In the above video,12,000 Israelis amassed in the Nokia Stadium in Tel Aviv last week. The one-price 35 shekel tickets were sold out in 15 minutes!! President of Israel Reuven Rivlin stood among the people and sang with them one of Naomi Shemer’s greatest hits. Written by Mr. Allan Arnet Thu, Apr 19, 2018 and class facilitated by Mr. S, Mr. Arnet and Morah Sandra

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Mr. Allan Arnet

aarnet@amyisrael.org

 

 

Ta’am Yisrael 2019

In addition we learned about Ta’am Yisrael, a trip to Israel that the current Zayin students will be able to take next year.  For “Save the Date” information for Ta’am Yisrael 2019, please click here.

Here are pictures of this past year’s trip: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMhbDEoTRT1c_yNsKqPBl1VehGNdw5b-Q2lg8QdNscrx1eBWuqQfAZI2SrbOI5eiw?key=LUY4bXJISUNFNVo4R3BZLUZWV3E3cVhtWUhGa2lB. For more information, please click on the following link: https://www.juf.org/cfje/taam_yisrael_faq.aspx

Having recently staffed this trip to Israel, I recommend it highly.  We have several students who have attended the trip and I would be happy to connect you with them or to speak with you about the trip if you are interested in learning more about it.  Written by Mr. Charlie Sherman, Head of School   Fri, Apr 20, 2018

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Apr 8, 2018

We watched video about Gerta Weisman’s Account of life before, during and after events of the Holocaust.  Her family was educated in Poland, invaded by the German’s and sent off in differing directions. Ms. Weisman was liberated by the man she married.  Here is a link to the video: https://www.tolerance.org/classroom-resources/tolerance-lessons/one-survivor-remembers-intolerance-today.

In addition we learned about Ta’am Yisrael, a trip to Israel that the current Zayin students will be able to take next year.  For “Save the Date” information for Ta’am Yisrael 2019, please click here.

Here are pictures of this past year’s trip: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMhbDEoTRT1c_yNsKqPBl1VehGNdw5b-Q2lg8QdNscrx1eBWuqQfAZI2SrbOI5eiw?key=LUY4bXJISUNFNVo4R3BZLUZWV3E3cVhtWUhGa2lB. For more information, please click on the following link: https://www.juf.org/cfje/taam_yisrael_faq.aspx

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Following Part I of our Yom HaShoah presentation, we spent our time together on independent practice with some work also being done on the practical side of mitzvah projects.  Many of our post-B’nai Mitzvah students worked as Madrichim during our time together.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Mar 11 & 18, 2018

This Week:

We cannot begin to tell you how proud we are of the Zayin students for their phenomenal Mitzvah Project Presentations to our Gimel through Prozdor Am Yisrael SJS community.  There were several students and parents who took notes of the projects and were inspired to think of the projects in a new way.

Mr. Charlie Sherman

csherman@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Last Week:

Most of the kids were working on their mitzvah boards and those who completed there project were king enough to lend a hand and guidance to those who needed help.  Afterwards, I took the kids who completed there project and we saw a quick video about paying it forward. Watch the link below  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUBTAdI7zuY  We then started our unit on Passover with a recap on how the Joseph got to Egypt and how he became second in command. We will continue our unit next week.

Mr. Allan Arnet

aarnet@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

 

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Mar 4, 2018

Most of the kids were working on their mitzvah boards and those who completed there project were king enough to lend a hand and guidance to those who needed help.  Afterwards, I took the kids who completed there project and we saw a quick video about paying it forward. Watch the link below  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUBTAdI7zuY  We then started our unit on Passover with a recap on how the Joseph got to Egypt and how he became second in command. We will continue our unit next week.

Mr. Allan Arnet

aarnet@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

 

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Feb 25, 2018

We began with our usual individualized B’nai Mitzvah practice during the first hour of SJS.  The second part of class we watched a video introduction this week’s parasha, Tetzaveh, which focuses largely on the garments worn by the high priest and other priests. This sparked an interesting discussion. Since the hereditary priesthood is not a major presence in Jewish life today, students were eager to learn more about what priests (kohanim) did, how they became priests, and how they interacted with rabbis and other community leaders.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

The students are making tremendous progress with their mitzvah boards and projects!  They are pasting the texts of their D’var Torah write-ups, dialoguing on their mitzvah projects, completing their wordles and getting ready for the March 18 Mitzvah Projects Presentation.  We are extremely proud of the Zayin students for their strong efforts and we cannot wait to see the students take center-stage in the Sanctuary on Sun, Mar 18 at 11:30 a.m., when they will have the opportunity to help inspire our entire SJS community with their Mitzvah Projects.

Mr. Charlie Sherman, Head of School

csherman@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Feb 11, 2018

SJS Regular Hebrew Reading/Tefillah Practice

Please click here to access is a link to a new Tefillah grid that has a list of all of the prayers that the students are expected to learn in the process of becoming a Bar/Bat Mitzvah.  There are also links to printable PDFs of the prayers and to many of the tunes and/or nusach that we use at Am Yisrael.  We strongly encourage that each student spends between 5-10 minutes per day practicing these prayers.  Thank you.

 

The students are making tremendous progress with their mitzvah boards and projects!  They are pasting the texts of their D’var Torah write-ups, dialoguing on their mitzvah projects, completing their wordles and getting ready for the March 18 Mitzvah Projects Presentation.  We are extremely proud of the Zayin students for their strong efforts and we cannot wait to see the students take center-stage in the Sanctuary on Sun, Mar 18 at 11:30 a.m., when they will have the opportunity to help inspire our entire SJS community with their Mitzvah Projects.

Mr. Charlie Sherman, Head of School

csherman@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Feb 4, 2018

SJS Regular Hebrew Reading/Tefillah Practice

Please click here to access is a link to a new Tefillah grid that has a list of all of the prayers that the students are expected to learn in the process of becoming a Bar/Bat Mitzvah.  There are also links to printable PDFs of the prayers and to many of the tunes and/or nusach that we use at Am Yisrael.  We strongly encourage that each student spends between 5-10 minutes per day practicing these prayers.  Thank you.

After focusing on self-directed practice for the first period, we looked at this week’s Torah reading, Mishpatim. Early in the parasha there is a set of rules that seem to a modern eye to endorse slavery. We learned that, taken from the perspective of its original ancient Middle Eastern audience, these rules represent a progressive regulation of an existing institution. More conceptually, we saw that the Torah can make more sense, both intellectually and morally, when considered in its own context.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

 

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Jan 21 & 28, 2018

In honor of National Holocaust Remembrance Day, we discussed how bullying leads to hurtful actions. Have you ever talked about prejudices, stereotyping, etc.? Next, how and when does this happen? The class read a story called “Sticks and Stones” by Stephen Kessler. It is a story about four boys picking on a boy when they thought that he was gay. They talked about how this led to gun violence and there was a pyramid of hatred. Prejudiced attitudes lead to genocides.

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

 

This week we began class as we have been doing all year: self-directed study for bat/bar mitzvah preparation and for general improvement in tefillah skills. During the second half of class we had a special session on the Ten Commandments, which are found in Parashat Yitro (this week’s Torah reading). What exactly are they, why do some religious groups divide them up differently than we do, and what does “covet” mean, anyway? This was a great chance to get Zayin students studying Torah directly from the Chumash!

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Jan 10 & 14, 2018

The Vav and Zayin of SJS gathered together in the library for a special learning session on the week’s Torah reading, Va’era. This section of the Torah, which includes Moses’ first confrontations with Pharaoh and most of the Ten Plagues. We considered why this story, which is one of the most famous in the world, still has to be told twice every year: once in the winter when we read it from the Torah, and once in the spring when we relive it during Pesach. We also learned about Moses’ unusual leadership role, and the ways in which he succeeded as a leader of thousands despite, or perhaps because of, his difficulty with speech.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Mr. Allan Arnet

aarnet@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

Zayin Class Updates Week of Dec 17, 2017

The annual Mitzvah Projects Presentation is being held on Sun, Mar 18 from 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. in the Sanctuary. We have updated our website with a direct link to the assignment that outlines the expectations for the presentation and most specifically the trifold project assignment. While we certainly don’t expect our Zayin students to work on this over the winter vacation, we wanted to send the assignment to you prior to the vacation so that our Zayin students would have it in the event that they have a couple of hours over the vacation to spend on this.
Here is the direct link:
I’m also attaching the information that is in this link as a two page printable PDF. Now in the 5th year of this program, we have found that most of our students do 90% of this trifold project at home. For those who thrive on having the extra support from our educators, we provide a couple of hours at SJS in the month leading up to the presentation letting the students work on trifolds. In addition, we will work with the students on their bimah presentations this winter prior to Sun, Mar 18.

Zayin Class Updates Week of Nov 12, 2017

Rabbi Newman Kamin did an Ask the Rabbi session during our Family Education and Brunch.  We had an excellent turnout and also learned more about the new Torah that is being written for our community in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Am Yisrael.  In addition, this week we team-taught the Vav and Zayin Classes.  We began with the question “What makes a person righteous?  We watched a video on Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  We focused on the concepts of upstanders and “paying it forward.”  In addition, we brought in the story of Honi and the idea of “planting trees that will be enjoyed by others.”

Mr. Allan Arnet

aarnet@amyisrael.org

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

 

This week Morah Sandra and Mr. Arnet team taught as I was out of SJS.  Please see their message above.  Thank you.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

Zayin Class Updates Week of Nov 5, 2017

We prepared a list of questions for our upcoming Brunch and Family Education with Rabbi Newman Kamin.  We discussed topics that we wanted to learn through a Jewish lens from our Rabbi.  We very much look forward to this session.

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

During the first half of the evening students were self-directed, working toward whichever skills they felt were most necessary for their upcoming bat or bar mitzvah. Some worked on prayers in the siddur, some practiced Torah or haftarah readings, and some worked on divrei Torah. Our few students who have already become benot mitzvah acted as tutors and advisors for those who have not yet completed the process.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Week of Oct 15, 2017

We brainstormed mitzvah project ideas as well continued our discussions of gift giving Tzedakah.  We watched videos of people who gave gifts in different capacities.  We discussed what level on Rambam’s ladder for each scenario and why it was so important.

We discussed Rambam’s ladder of gift giving and how we would prioritize the level of gift giving and why.  We talked about knowing your recipient and had phenomenal moments in which students realized that it does not matter whether we like or even know our recipients.  There are benefits to knowing recipients and not knowing them.  Any way we give is necessary and crucial.

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

During the first half of the evening students were self-directed, working toward whichever skills they felt were most necessary for their upcoming bat or bar mitzvah. Some worked on prayers in the siddur, some practiced Torah or haftarah readings, and some worked on divrei Torah. Our few students who have already become benot mitzvah acted as tutors and advisors for those who have not yet completed the process.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Week of Oct 8, 2017

This week we reordered Rambam’s rungs of Tzedakah. We discussed the difference between ‘charity’ and ‘tzedakah.’ Giving in various ways to help make the world more ‘just’ is so crucial.

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Class was a beit midrash-style session devoted to bat- and bar-mitzvah preparation. Students focused on the siddur, their Torah and haftarah readings, and other important synagogue skills and duties, while periodically consulting their teacher or madricha. It was great to hear so many different kinds of work happening in one class!

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

Zayin Class Updates Week of Sep 24, 2017

In our Moving Traditions curriculum we did an activity called “Hot Chocolate River.”  We are focused on the metaphor of crossing over from one part of our lives to another.  How can we maneuver these rites of passage?  We demonstrated how we are supported through our Jewish traditions and we set up a covenant for how we will learn with each other throughout the year.  The first step of this passage of time is reflecting on our childhoods.

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

Class was a beit midrash-style session devoted to bat- and bar-mitzvah preparation. Students focused on the siddur, their Torah and haftarah readings, and other important synagogue skills and duties, while periodically consulting their teacher or madricha. It was great to hear so many different kinds of work happening in one class!

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

Zayin Class Updates Weeks of Sep 10 & 17, 2017

Hi, my name is Lawrence Szenes-Strauss and your children call me Mr. S. for short.  I teach your children on Wednesdays once again this year.  In keeping with the spirit of the season, we began class with an exploration of the concept of teshuvah(repentance) and how it relates to asking forgiveness, but is not the same thing. We talked about concrete examples of teshuvah and learned about Maimonides’s test for whether someone has successfully done teshuvah.  For the second half of class we divided up into pairs, each of which worked on a presentation to teach two or three important vocabulary words from the siddur to the rest of the class. Over the course of the year we hope to develop a strong working vocabulary of the most common Hebrew words that occur in our services.

Hazzan Lawrence Szenes-Strauss (Mr. S.)

lszenesstrauss@amyisrael.org

 

Hi, my name is Sandra Mieli Kamm and I teach your children on Sundays and Wednesdays once again this year.  This Wednesday our Zayin students took part in a world wide initiative called character day.   We were introduced to the “periodic table of character strengths.”  From this table, we discussed what character strengths we possess and how we can incorporate those strengths to improve our daily lives and our communities.  We talked about how are personalities are evolving and that we can improve upon various strengths by “exercising” them daily.  We ended by asking the question “How can we utilize our strengths to improve our lives, families and communities in a meaningful way each day?”

Morah Sandra Mieli Kamm

smielikamm@amyisrael.org

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