Ivrit Growth in Beit Shteelim


Amidst Shteelim’s explorations of the שמות (Shemot – Exodus) story in designing costumes, we’ve also had what I think is tremendous growth in עברית (Ivrit – Hebrew) over the past several weeks, working on several new goals in kindergarten!

Over the past two weeks, as Jewish Enrichment Center staff has focused on Ivrit teaching in our weekly professional development sessions, I’ve tried to incorporate the approaches and new exploration ideas from these sessions into Bet Shteelim in order to make our Hebrew learning as rich as possible.

Shteelimers are trying many new things in Ivrit, and reaching a lot of new milestones, including:

– spelling our שם (shem – name) from memory and knowing the sound of each letter in it (as a window into learning all the sounds of the letters in the aleph bet)

– writing our שם from memory

– recognizing by sight all of the שמות (shemot – names) of children in our קבוצה (kevutzah – group)

– recognizing all of the צבעים (tzvaim – colors)

– counting up to thirty

Each child is working on their own goals at their own pace. What has been a great success over the past few weeks is setting up many Ivrit materials — magnets, puzzle pieces, and other manipulatives — for children to chose themselves. I’ve seen children choose to work with materials that appeal to them, and then successfully negotiate sharing those materials with a partner or group.


Two Shteelimers sharing materials to create the aleph bet together

Two Shteelimers sharing materials to create the aleph bet together


The independent work that’s flourishing in Shteelim has allowed some children to work on אותיות (otiot – letters) recognition, while others work on שמות (shemot – names), while others work on reading out loud. I’m excited to work with Shteelimers as they continue to grow in עברית (Ivrit).


Shteelimers work together to match "fancy font" letters to printed shemot (names)

Shteelimers work together to match “fancy font” letters to printed shemot (names)


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