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12 Jan


Well so much for returning to school… Apparently we were in need of a few snow days to extend the winter break! The one day we actually had school last week,  Wednesday, I, (moral Beth), had the privilege of attending a science conference with Mrs. Abrams and Dr. Tishkoff. Were able to experience lots of wonderful new ideas and ways to get the children excited about achieving our goals. I greatly look forward to bringing these new skills to the classroom!
Open Circle: 
This week’s lesson was about “Understanding Feeling Words”. We began with the children providing a list of different feeling words. After this they were asked to provide examples of when they may experience these feelings, They were also asked which of the feelings were the ones they WANT to feel, and what can be done to make others feel this way. Finally each child picked a “feeling card” out of a hat and were asked to illustrate what that feeling might look like. It is so important for children to understand these feelings. Please talk with your children about the different feelings they experience. Look through photographs, or pictures from books or magazines and talk about what they think the people feel like. The most important lesson is that IT IS OKAY TO HAVE ANY AND ALL OF THESE FEELINGS, but it is how we handle them is what counts! 
Secular Studies:
Reading Groups 
Reading groups resumed site nicely. Children paired together, shared reading, developing comprehension skills as well as language arts skills through the completion of the reading packet, as well as independent reading. Children know the routine so well now that they maneuver these centers flawlessly! This week we have been focusing on Dr. Martin Luther King JR., and children have been provided with a variety of level appropriate readings. 
Math Centers: 
Things 1 – To begin our week back after  LONG vacation, we took a look at a calendar, identified the types weather and how many days each type of weather occurred. This picture graph required identifying a key, counting consecutively, and documenting numerals. 
Once we go back into the swing of being at school we talked about measurement. big,bigger biggest, small, smaller, smallest,tall, taller, tallest, short, shorter, shortest, long, longer, longest, heavy, heavier, heaviest, light, lighter, lightest. Children learned that some of these words are used when there are two items versus more than two. They also learned about standard and non-standard units of measurements.  And Mazel Tov to them because they completed the first book!!!!!
Things 2 reviewed adding by making a ten and then moved on to SUBTRACTING by making ten! This is a bit more complicated due to the equations necessary in order to solve. 
Social Studies:
This week we studied Dr. Martin Luther King JR. We read a book that talked about the March on Washington, as well as one that provided background on his childhood. During Reading Groups the children each read appropriate books and completed assignments that focused on specific skills. For example; Who, What, When, Were, Why, a KWL (What I Know, What I Want to know and What I Learned chart), as well as focusing on specific details about his life. We also all contributed to the new classroom bulletin board; I Can Change The World By… Please feel free to come by, take a look, and ADD TO IT!!!!
Our Read-A-Loud is also a chapter book about Dr. King’s life!
Spelling/Sight Words:
Things 1 reviewed the sight words they have learned thus far and were provided with three new words. /give/, /for/, /on/. Though a variety of exercises (writing, coloring, playdoh, wiki six, etc.) the children had the opportunity to practice these words and use them out loud in a sentence. 
Things 2 were provided with a new list of words that focus on the long /a/ with the silent /e/. In addition to the spelling workbooks, they have had opportunities to create their own silly sentences and create their words with magnets.
Writing centers once again, went quite well. All of the children have completed their “How To” books! Writing centers focused on creating sentences, as well as phonics activities and word families. Children are really enjoying the center activities and I am so excited to introduce a slew of new ones!
Judaic/Hebrew :
Prior to the vacation we watched 2 godcasts for Vayiggash, and our role play included: God, Pharoah, Joseph, Jacob, Benjamin, Judah, and rest of the brothers.  We listened and played air guitar to Cat Stevens’ Father and Son.  We did a conga line from Egypt to Canaan to Beer Sheva to Egypt to the neighborhood of…Goshen.  We continued to learn about Hanuka through the 8th day, and focused on Pirsum Hanes — the central mitzva of publicizing the Hanuka Miracle.  We had Hanuka learning centers including: Freeze Dance — Hanuka Music with Paul Zim; Hanuka song singalong; Magnetic Hebrew Letters — Bracha over the Candles; Hanuka Make your Own Puppet Show; Sevivon Secret Letter Spinning; and Quiet Reading Corner: Hanuka.  It was a boisterous and fun learning center period — ideal for the 8th day of Hanuka!  The children did amazingly well with sophisticated Hebrew lyrics about Jerusalem in the Hanuka show.  We hope you will sing these songs together with your children on the walls of the Old City on your next Israel trip! Witnessing their swaying, with their arms around each other, at the end of the show — teacher nirvana.  We are continuing our exploration of 3 letter roots of Hebrew words, the key to unlocking the language: ask them about this!
Shmot: We had a one day week last week, but did watch the godcast and began to build our block and lego pyramids.  
wash  רָחַץ   bush   סנה   strong arm   ביד חזקה   to take   לָקַח   why   לָמָּה, מַדּוּעַ
This week we watched the godcast and finished up our lego and block pyramids from last week.  The entire time the class was building the pyramids — the children were encouraged to moan, groan, cry, and whine.  We then had a role play starring: God, Pharoah, Moshe, Aaron, Pharoah’s magician, the Staff that turned into the Snake,  Blood, Frogs, Lice, Wild Beasts, Cattle Disease, Boils and Hail.  We sang the Louis Armstrong “Go Down Moses” all week, with great gusto, and occasionally we heard the corresponding shouts of “No No No, I will not let you Go” by Pharoah.  We sang our 2-part Go Down Moses/I Think I Can Greek Chorus about Moses’ doubts about his speaking ability,  and his lack of confidence with his assigned task.  We talked about how God assigned Aaron to assist in carrying out the daunting task — to each according to their ability! We had center activities including: the First Seven Plague Pupppets; First Seven Plague Freeze Dance; First Seven Plague Mazes; and First Seven Plague Coloring station.  We sang the “5 Speckled Frogs” song to get in the right Frog mood, and wore our 1st Seven Plague masks at meeting time.  
Vera:  morning   בֹּקֶר   stones  אֶבֶן  frog  צְפַרְדֵּעַ  blood   דָּם   mean/evil   מְרֻשָּׁע
blood  דָּם   dead  מֵת  stop   עֲצִירָה  that   זֶה  love   אַהֲבָה   sad   עָצוּב  angry   כָּעוּס  surprised  הִפְתִּיעַ  happy    שָׂמֵחַ  scared    נִפְחָד

Thank you, and Shabbat Shalom!!
Morah Beth and Morah Miriam

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