Tag Archive: cooperative learning

Oct 19

Art and Exploration in Anafim v’Alonim!

We have been SO busy in Beit Anafim v’Alonim (“branches” for 4th grade and “oak trees” for 5th and 6th grades)! Between launching our Sukkat Shlomecha community project, exploring a new perek in our Ya’akov v’Esav theme, and developing our skills as learning partners for studying ivrit and biblical text, the children in Anafim v’Alonim …

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Apr 23

A Different Kind of Connection

I often end up blogging about moments of connection in Beit Nitzanim. We care so much about collaboration, and we deliberately spend time growing the skills for being part of a community. And while I may sound like a broken record, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the beautiful partnerships I’ve seen in …

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Feb 26

Lights, camera, action!

Backgrounds painted. Check. Costumes selected. Check. Props made. Check. Script edited. Check. That can only mean one thing… It’s time for Nitzanim to take center stage! We can’t wait to show off all of our hard work and incredible ideas at Family Exploration and Celebration. See you on Sunday, March 11!

Oct 09

Determined

I believe that our children can do anything. They are creative and capable, and they amaze me everyday. But sometimes I ask them to do something that’s a little tricky, and it feels hard or frustrating. Last week, after children figured out the ancient early rabbis’ “rules” for building a סכה (sukkah—booth), they got to …

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Sep 07

All in a Day’s Work

Did you know that Shteelim (“Saplings” for kindergarten) and Nitzanim (“Buds” for 1st grade) are researchers? They make observations:  “Look, round challah.” They ask research questions:  “What does a תפוח (tapuach–apple) smell like?” “Like cantaloupe.” “What צבעים  (tseva’im–colors) are on a תפוח (tapuach–apple)?” They test hypotheses:  “Look what happens when I add מים (mayim–water) to my …

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Oct 20

Many minds, helping hands

During the first few days of סוכות (the festival of Sukkot), we in ענפים (Anafim, “Branches” for 3rd-4th grade) began our Sukkah City project by figuring out the Early Rabbis’ rules of what a סוכה (sukkah) needs in order to count as a סוכה (sukkah). We looked at pictures of סוכות (sukkot) and discussed what …

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Oct 16

Sukkot Bamidbar

Today, in Beit Nitzanim, I asked children to journey into imagination with me. We imagined that we were slaves to Par’oh in מצרים (Mitzrayim—Egypt). After a series of plagues and the hardening of Par’oh’s heart, we were finally free! We had to hurry to get out of Egypt before Par’oh changed his mind. But what …

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May 18

And the story goes…

This week we have been reviewing stories from the Torah that we have heard before… months ago! But our nursery and kindergarten children seem to remember like it was yesterday. We started with Bereshit (the beginning), floated with Noah, remembered Yosef (Joseph), and parted the sea with Moshe (Moses). There are so many stories and so …

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Apr 21

Prove It

Sometimes, the best learning comes up unexpectedly. It’s up to us to seize the moment. There we were, pulling apart the structure of Rabban Gamliel’s argument (really! with great enthusiasm!), and one fourth grader said, “Hallel is in the Tanakh.” [Tanakh is an acronym for Torah, Nevi’im (Prophets), and Ketuvim (Writings).] And I said, “Prove …

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Apr 18

Child Directed Projects in Nitzanim

Over the last four weeks in Beit Nitzanim, we’ve been experimenting. We wondered what it might look like for 1st/2nd grade children to design their own projects? Here are three aspects of the way we structured this four-week process: Chavrutah and small group work. Small group and chavrutah (partner) work allowed children not only to …

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