Tag Archive: yetzirah

May 25

Quick, quick.

There’s not a moment to lose! We only have a few real workdays left, and it turns out that this project we’ve undertaken is actually our biggest and most collaborative project yet. It’s just right for the end of the year, though: Look at how many skills and habits are going into it! Familiarity and …

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May 19


“Wait, the chalk slipped. Hold it still while I do it again.” “Can you pull that side so it stays tight?” “But look. If we make the swirls thinner, there’s more room for the scenes.” “Is that the earth and the sea?” “No, I think it’s Noah’s Ark. See the flood and the mountain sticking out?” …

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May 16

One Final Project, Many Steps

We’ve started our final project in Beit Nitzanim. It’s a project that helps us reflect on our whole year AND a project we can work on together, so that we can show off all of our fabulous teamwork skills. The project has so many steps: Step 1: Remember the three big themes from our year: Bamidbar (“In …

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May 04

Megillat Rut – The Book of Ruth

This week in Alonim (“Oak Trees,” for 5th and 6th grades), we read Megillat Rut, a text some Jews read on the holiday of Shavuot. As part of our exploration of Megillat Rut, we connected the ideas we had during our Bamidbar and Kedushah themes with our current theme, Shavuot. Alonimers heard Megillat Rut on their special Shabbat session …

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Feb 16

Diving in

Yup! It’s happened… ענפים (Anafim, “branches” for 3rd-4th grade) have shifted gears. They’ve taken their own ideas about קדושה (kedushah, holiness); deepened, sharpened, or expanded them in conversation with each other and the Jewish texts we’ve explored; and now they’re starting to channel these ideas through their unique creative visions. The classroom has bustled with activity this week as …

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Jan 19

What is holy?

A new, teeny tiny text:   וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָה, אֶל-מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר דַּבֵּר אֶל-כָּל-עֲדַת בְּנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל, וְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם קְדֹשִׁים תִּהְיוּ כִּי קָדוֹשׁ, אֲנִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם “Adonai said to Moshe, Say to all the group of the Israelites, ‘Be holy, for I, Adonai your God, am holy”   ( ויקרא; Vayikra, Leviticus 19:1-2) A 9-year-old responds using micrography: “What is holy / …

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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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Nov 30

An Independent Kind of Day

We’re in final project mode! I spent the day meeting one-on-one with children to help them synthesize and deepen their ideas about our Bamidbar theme. While I looked on from a nearby table, children moved through the steps of our day somewhat independently. Children read the message, which told them to answer a question on …

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Nov 08

Lots and Lots of Wondering

Last week I was so impressed by the way that Nitzanim (“Buds” for 1st/2nd grade) children willingly and confidently practiced the chavrutah (partner text study) skill of hearing the voice of the text and restating what they heard in their own words. (Click here for the blog post). We’re continuing to practice the skills of …

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Oct 23

A Whole Lotta Teamwork

Overheard in the יצירה (yetzirah–art/creativity) studio today: “Can you hand me the tape?” “What if we connect our chains?” “Here you hold this while I connect the walls.” Nitzanim (“Buds” for 1st/2nd grade) children were more than ready to work together to execute some large-scale sukkot designs. Working in groups of three, children had access to …

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