Archive | October, 2016

October 17th – 28th

31 Oct

Fun in the classroom

With the Lemon and the Etrog looking so similar, we wanted to explore them further to see what the similarities and differences there were once we cut into them. We encouraged the children to  observe the outside and compare the two.  The children noticed that the lemon was smooth with a bump on the top and the Etrog was bumpy and had what looked like a stem at the top and the bottom.  Once we cut the fruits the children noticed that the Etrog had thicker skin with more white and had many more seeds than the lemon.  We then tasted the two. The children thought that the lemon was very sour and juicy, but the Etrog tasted bitter. We introduced the Eagles to the Venn Diagram, used for comparing and contrasting!

Moreh Eli has been kind enough to make Challah dough for us every Friday. To thank him for this Chesed we made a card for him.

 

 

Judaic Studies

Sukkot

We were able to eat lunch in the sukkah on one day when the weather cooperated!

Building a sukkah using classroom and natural materials.

Morah Chani introduced the children the meaning of the Lulav  and the Etrog She showed them how the Lulav is held to bless the Sukkah.  The children took turns holding the Lulav and shaking it right, left and all around.

Simchat Torah

Morah Chani showed the children how to very carefully handle the Torah, and reminded them that we do not touch it with our fingers, but use a Yad to follow the text.  We also discussed that the Holiday Simchat Torah is a time when we finish reading the Torah and begin reading again.  The children also created their own individual flags in recognition of the Holiday.

Creation

Morah Chani began teaching the class about Creation. They learned that first there was just a big mess. Then Hashem created light and dark. Next, she taught the class that Hashem created water and sky. Along with the story, Morah Chani is introducing the Hebrew vocabulary connected to each day of Creation. The students are taking turns making Creation posters for each day, and we will share pictures of them soon.

 

Shabbat Party

This week’s shabbat party was hosted by the Aaronson family. We enjoyed cookies, cucumber, and challah. The black/white cookies were a perfect treat, as we were just discussing Hashem’s creation of light and dark.

Art

Morah Jan is reading The Lorax to the Eagles. They used paper, scissors, and glue to create truffala tree collages. Although they were all given the same instructions, each piece of art is unique to each child.

 

Celebrating Sukkot

21 Oct

This month has raced by with all the short weeks at school, but we have had a lot of fun celebrating Sukkot in our class. Last week we explored a pomegranate and painted with the seeds, popping the seeds to make the red dye. The children really got into it. We have also really enjoyed our playground Sukkah and today had snack in it with the Hummingbirds. It was a very special time.

This week we explored a pumpkin and did pumpkin inspired painting. The pumpkin wasn’t good inside, so we didn’t play with the guts as we planned, but the seeds had started sprouting little seedlings inside the pumpkin, so everyone was really interested in that, and we put the seeds in a bag with a wet paper towel to see if they will keep germinating in the light of day.

 

My Gym is always a hit. Moreh Ryan brings great activities and a contagious energy that has the children trying new things and challenging themselves. This week balancing was a great hit, and everyone was so brave to try it, many without even holding a helping hand.

Singalong on Fridays is a favorite time of the week, but music goes so beyond Friday mornings and has become a staple of daily classroom life. With a teacher or with a friend, the children lead singalongs going through Shabbat songs, circle songs, songs from home and even songs they make up together. The obvious joy makes it a very special time.

 

Wednesday was so beautiful we took advantage of the weather to explore Fall on the back field. We picked up leaves and threw them, reached for the branches, explored the tree trunk and bushes, played ring around the rosy and had a great time seeing and hearing all there was to see. Nature makes a great classroom, and the children loved it.

Each day in class or on the playground, friendships are nurtured and grow. From fine motor skills like snipping with scissors and building with blocks to dramatic play in the kitchen or dress up box, the children are growing in confidence and ability. It has been a fun and busy holiday season and we look forward to all the coming weeks will hold and the friendships and learning that will continue to grow and flourish.

October 10th – 14th

14 Oct

Fun in the Classroom

Socio-emotional learning

Mr. Healy came in for his second socio-emotional lesson this week.  For his first lesson he introduced the children to the concept of being a good listener, starting with how to ready yourself to sit and learn during circle time.  He taught us the following song: “Eyes are watching, ears are listening, mouths are quiet, bodies calm.   This is how we listen, this is how we use our brain.”  Ask your child to sing the song for you!  In his second lesson he introduced the concept of self-talk.  This is an important concept to learn, as it helps us stay on task and focused on what we are doing.  Because Mr. Healy is only with us once a week, we follow all the lessons he introduces with supporting lessons to ensure the children understand and benefit from the concept introduced.

 

Meet Charlie!

In addition to the socio-emotional lessons introduced by Mr. Healy , we will also be working with the children in specific areas of socio-emotional growth that we observe is needed.  Something we have been noticing recently is that the children are struggling to understand that their words can be very powerful.  Expressing frustration with words like “I’m not your friend anymore.”, “You can’t come to my birthday party.”, or “You can’t play with us.”, can be very hurtful to others.  In order to make this concept more concrete for the children we introduced Charlie.  For this lesson, we cut a paper person out, whom we named Charlie.  We encouraged the children to say unkind things to Charlie they had heard others say that had hurt their feelings.  Each time unkind things were said to Charlie we crumpled up the paper.  By the end of the lesson, Charlie was completely crumpled and did not look happy at all!  We tried to make Charlie feel better by saying kind things.  He began to straighten out as kind and supportive words were said to him.  But, one thing we realized at the end, was that even though Charlie was mostly straightened out, the paper was still crinkled.  Our goal with this lesson was to have the children understand that our words have a lasting affect on our friends and, referring to the self-talk lesson from Mr. Healy, that at times you may feel frustrated and say things you don’t mean, but it’s better to keep those comments to yourself, or to take a moment to think of more appropriate words to use.

“Building Kindness-Chesed”

Last week we introduced the students to our Wall of Kindness and taught them about the Hebrew word Chesed. Anytime we see or hear students saying kind words to one another, or independently doing acts of kindness, we celebrate each observation with the class and write it down on a “brick” to build our Kindness Wall.

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Yom Kippur

Mr. Healy’s lessons, our “Building Kindness” Wall, and our “Charlie” lesson have all been part of our conversations around the meaning of Yom Kippur. We’ve discussed how the start of a new year is a time to reflect upon the choices we made and things we said during the past year and how we might do things differently in the year to come. While the High Holiday of Yom Kippur has come and gone, our conversations about being kind with our words and actions will certainly continue, and we look forward to building our Wall of Kindness bigger and bigger, with all of the wonderful chesed we observe each day.

Bentzi Adventures

Bentzi enjoyed spending the weekend with Ruti last week.  The had some fun adventures including a trip to Costco, Ruti’s mom’s school and sitting in the family Sukkot.

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September 26th – October 7th

9 Oct

Fun in the classroom

With so much talk about Apples this time of year we decided to do some apple tasting, to see which apples we liked the best.  First we looked, touched and felt the apples and discussed their similarities and differences.  Before we began the tasting we had the children think about what apple they would like the most.   It was interesting how most of the children guessed they would like one of the two apples with the name “delicious” in them – the power of words!  As the children tasted the apples we had them describe how they tasted, it was wonderful to hear such descriptive language from the children.  The described the apples as; squishy, yummy, sour, sweet, delicious and mushy.  After the tasting was done we then asked the children to vote what their favorite apples were and we tallied the results as a chart.  Red Delicious and Fuji apples were tied as winners.  Golden Delicious, which was one of the most popular ones that the children guessed they would like, only had one vote!

The children continued to share their family books this week

Lunar Study

In the month of October, with the holidays connected to the cycle of the moon, we began tracking the moon phases on our calendar and learning the names of the phases.  As the month progresses we will see that, just like a whole year,  the moon is also a cycle that keeps continuously going around.  We are learning the moon phases; New Moon, Waxing Crescent,Gibbous Quarter Moon (or half moon),Full Mon, Waning Gibbous and Waning Crescent.

Playground Fun

Happy Birthday to Ruti!

We celebrated our first birthday in the Eagles class today.  Thank-you for Ruti and her family for celebrating Ruti’s Birthday with us

 

Judaic Studies

This week the children worked hard to complete greeting cards, honey jars and make Honey cake to Rosh Hashanah.  The children helped write greetings in the cards and we took a walk to the mail box to mail them.

September 30th: This week our Shabbat helper was Shmuel.  Thank-you to the Rapoport family for participating in our Shabbat part this week

Introduction to Sukkot

Morah Chani introduced the children to the meaning of Sukkot and the rules of building a Sukkot.  We began making Bruchim Habaim signs to place in our Sukkot.

Sweet New Hummingbirds

6 Oct

Hello Hummingbird Families! L’Shanah Tova!

We hope everyone had a wonderful time celebrating Rosh Hashanah with your loved ones.

Our first blog post is here, just in time to begin the New Year! We will post weekly blogs from now on and would love your feedback, questions and ideas. All three of us have taken so many pictures since the beginning of school so there are a lot of extra photos on this first post. We hope you enjoy, let the blogging begin!

Eli, Julia, and Ronisha

Below, are amazing examples of your children playing together in a variety of ways.  Most likely, at this stage of child development, the kids are utilizing Parallel Play, a concept used to describe two hummingbirds playing next to each other.  The next stage we will be looking for, and in some cases is in our classroom at times is called Cooperative Play, where the children interact and share common toys.

Similarly, building predictable, stable, and loving relationships starts with trust and authentic care.  We take every opportunity to bond with these lovable Hummingbirds to demonstrate this to them.  Our main goal throughout our days together is to foster strong social/emotional care with the children and between each friend interplay.

Rain or shine, we love our outside time!

What do you have to eat today?

We love talking to the kids about what food they have, who has the same, and of course how much they are enjoying it!

The hummingbirds love music, they especially love this big drum!

How many different noises can we make?

Whether it’s just down the hallway or taking a stroll outside in our “bye-bye buggy,” the hummingbirds are always up for a walk!

We love to explore in the classroom! There are so many wonderful toys and friends to play with. Who is here today? How many different shapes and colors do you see?

Wow do we love My Gym and Library!

We are so lucky to have Moreh Ryan come teach us how to tumble! After our first class with Ryan it was clear to him that we needed more play time so he began bringing in extra toys for the kids to play with. The kids are loving it and we are so appreciative of Ryan for recognizing the children’s needs and adjusting his original plan. He also does a puppet show every week to end the class!

Morah Stella reads us wonderful books and we get to pick our own books out to bring to the classroom.

It’s circle time! What songs should we sing today? We love when the hummingbirds tell us what they want to sing. We are learning new songs every day and we have a big list of favorites already. Twinkle Twinkle little star, Old Macdonald, Wheels on the bus, and singing to our clothing are just a few that we love!

Let’s do Art!

The Hummingbirds love all kinds of art! Dot markers, crayons, stickers, and more! What should we make today? What other types of art can we do?

A sweet new year is ahead of us.  The Hummingbirds began celebrating in many different ways. We did a taste test of red, green, and yellow apples. Did they taste different? What was your favorite? We loved decorating crowns with apple, honey, pomegranate, and Shofar stickers. We hope our families enjoyed their cards from us too!