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Jan 22

We’re back! And boy, did it sound gorgeous.

Anafim (“Branches”), our 3rd – 5th grade children, started chavrutah (partner text study) again this week.

It was so simple. As if it was the most natural thing in the world.

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“Who do we listen to when we do chavrutah?” I asked. Children knew right away: My chavrutah. The Torah. Me. (At least they didn’t roll their eyes at me for what they thought was a VERY obvious question.

“How do we read the text?” I asked. “Out loud!” came a chorus of voices. And it was that simple. We were off. And suddenly the room was filled with the hum of children studying Torah. Stunning. Gorgeous. I wish I’d recorded the sound.

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We filled pages with our questions and ideas. Here are some of the most pressing questions Anafim children had about Genesis 37:1-11, the beginning of Yosef’s (Joseph’s) story. And here’s a link to the translation we’re reading. What questions and ideas do you have about this section?

  • Why does Ya’akov (Jacob) have a favorite son if he has already had bad experiences with his own mom favoring him and then his own brother hating him?
  • Why did Yosef (Joseph) bring just bad reports? Why not some good reports?
  • Maybe his brothers are angry because his father took his brothers’ clothes to make the tunic with lots of colors.
  • Maybe his brothers hated him because he has special dreams. Maybe they don’t get dreams, but they wish they did. Maybe they want them [the dreams], and think he’s special for getting them.
  • Did Yosef (Joseph) like that his brothers hated him? If not, why did he share it [the dream]?
  • If Yosef’s father loved him the most, why did he scold him?

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