Tag Archive: text interpretation

Apr 27

Back in the Midbar (Wilderness)

ענפים (Anafim, “Branches” for 3rd-4th grade) are just beginning their last theme for this school year: שבועות (Shavuot, “weeks”). One of the sources that ענפים (Anafim) are exploring is a short text from ספר דברים (Sefer Devarim, the book of Deuteronomy) 16, which gives instructions about celebrating the summer harvest festival. But as Anafim know, ספר דברים (Sefer …

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Feb 09

Sorting Leviticus 19

This week, אלונים (Alonim, oak trees, for 5th and 6th grades) did something unusual with our text. In order to better understand what our text says, we cut up the פרק (perek, chapter) into chunks according to ideas. Then, we sorted the chunks into categories. 5th and 6th graders chose for themselves how to cut the …

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Feb 08

“Wondering” Questions

For Nitzanim children, our Kedushah (Holiness) theme has been about experimentation. We’ve experimented with ways to express our ideas about holiness with weaving and shadow play (click here). We’ve experimented with a graphic organizer to help us slow down and hear the text (click here). And today, we experimented with a new way to share lots …

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Feb 02

Turning point

It’s the third week of our קדושה (kedushah; holiness) theme in ענפים (Anafim; “branches,” for 3rd-4th grade), and something is about to happen. Right now, we have two units of  יצירת תורה (Yetzirat Torah; Torah creation/creativity) time most days. The first is focused on developing and articulating our ideas about קדושה (kedushah), and during the second one, we’re exploring excerpts from …

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Feb 02

How can we not put a stumbling block in front of the blind?

In Beit Shorashim vShteelim (nursery and kindergarten) this week we explored how accessible it is for a blind person to find Beit Shorashim vShteelim and what were some of the challenges that we found in the building. We felt how a blind person might read the different rooms that are in building, however we had …

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Jan 31

Slowing Down to Hear the Text

Our main Kedushah theme text (click here for the text) is packed to the brim with details. There are so many examples of holiness in just one פרק (perek–chapter) of the Torah! It’s hard to really hear such a full text, so we’ve been testing out some strategies to help ourselves slow down and listen closely. We tried …

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Jan 27

“Respect Your Mother and Your Father:” Fifth and Sixth Grade Perspectives

“…Be holy, for I, Adonai your God, am holy. Every one of you must respect your mother and your father…(Lev. 19:2-3).” Conversation #1 Sixth Grader 1: “Why does it need to say that? Shouldn’t we respect them anyway? We should respect everyone.” Fifth Grader 1: “Yeah, but God is making sure everyone knows.” Sixth Grader …

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Jan 25

Playing Examples of Kedusha (Holiness) from the Torah

This week in Beit Shorashim V’Shteelim (nursery and kindergarten) we have started playing some examples of the many things that the Torah says are Kadosh in ויקרא י״ט (Vayikra-Leviticus 19).   The Torah says so many things are kadosh (holy)! Leaving the corners of your field for the poor… “We should leave the food so they aren’t hungry, …

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Jan 24

An Explosion of Ideas

Sometimes we just need a week to catch-up. We need time to process, time to think about our ideas and express them, time to replay a comment from a peer, and time to get to know the big ideas in the text. This week in Beit Nitzanim, we’re taking that catch-up week to reflect on …

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Jan 15

Nitzanim Experiment in Yetzirah (Art/Creativity)

As an education team, we asked, “How might new and different modalities allow children to express their ideas about Kedushah?” So today we experimented! Children tested out ways to use weaving and hanging shadow sculpture to express an idea about what it might mean to “be holy.” And it was fascinating to watch children work. …

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