I’ll let you in on a secret… Your children believe that the last four weeks have been mainly about wrestling with ideas of power and forgiveness in Torah text as part of our Elul Project theme. And that has been a HUGE part of children’s work and play. (See this post for a preview of how children have been using facial expression and color to express ideas about feelings).
However, children have also been doing a different kind of work, whether they realize it or not. They’ve been getting to know each other as members of the Nitzanim (“Buds” for 1st-2nd grade) community.
Like when we played silly name games so that we could be absolutely, positively, sure that we know every child’s שם (shem–name) in our קבוצה (kevutzah–group). Some children even accepted the challenge to name every child’s שם (shem–name). Other children are working on it, which is okay too.
We’ve also had quiet conversations with a buddy on our way to the social hall for משחקים (mischakim–games). When we arrived in the social hall, these partners reported that they’d spent the weekend gardening and reading Harry Potter for the third time.
We’ve been playing lots and lots of Hebrew games, some with old friends and some with new friends. We hear lots of “Can I play?” or “What can we play together?” in Beit Nitzanim.
We’re on the way to building a community that trusts, supports, and cares about each other–and we don’t even know how much progress we’ve already made!