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Mar 30

Nitzanim Reflect on Haggadah Theme

My favorite moment captured.

My favorite moment captured.  The children waited until everyone had grape juice to toast at the same time.

This week we are celebrating all of Nitzanim’s accomplishments during our הגדה(Haggadah) theme with a סיום (siyyum—closing ceremony). Our סיום (siyyum–closing ceremony) is modeled after the structure of a Seder. In between opportunities to taste the items on the Seder plate and drink four cups of grape juice, are times to reflect in writing or with a partner on what we have done over the last nine weeks. Today’s סיום (siyyum—closing ceremony) was a time to enjoy each other’s company, reflect as a community, and continue wondering and thinking deeply about the questions that still matter to us from Exodus ch. 1-15.

One of the questions I hoped children might answer was, “What are you proud of?” It’s always telling to see the different experiences that touched different children.

Here are some of our answers:

First grader: I am proud of our questions.

(Nitzanim spent over six weeks generating a long list of questions that was posted to our wall as a giant starburst. Children then narrowed down their “big question” from this communal list. Children expressed great disappointment when I needed to dismantle the starburst to make room for new material on our walls, so the questions are now housed in a book for children to return to.)

First grader: I am proud of my mini haggadah

(This first grader spent week after week writing the Exodus story in her own words. What an accomplishment for a first grader!)

Second grader: I am proud of us because we got to have a Seder

(The us here shows that this second grader has started to think of Nitzanim as a community—a group bound together by shared experiences and communal pride.)

What an incredible nine weeks we’ve had as a Nitzanim community!

A second grader dips her כרפס (karpas--parsley) into salt water.

A second grader dips her כרפס (karpas–parsley) into salt water.

A second grader writes his interpretation for the items on the seder plate.

A second grader writes his interpretation for the items on the seder plate.

A first grader enjoys his מצה (matzah).

A first grader enjoys his מצה (matzah).

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