JCS Class Summaries–January 12, 2014
This week at Or Emet’s JCS we celebrated Tu B’Shevat. Mrs. Sarah taught us a Tu B’Shevat song, and how to do a yoga tree pose.
We read The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein, an annual favorite. We also colored some pictures while engaged in an excellent, ADORABLE discussion about the moon, gravity, and where on earth it was currently night. We topped off our day with an excellent Tu B’Shevat seder.
In January, the Middles class learned about Tikkun Olam. We made art projects showing how we can help to repair the world. We also learned about Tu B’Shevat. Our class decided right away that taking care of nature is an excellent way to practice Tikkun Olam. Tree-planting isn’t very realistic in January, so we had fun planting parsley and forget-me-not seeds to take home. Then Sarah taught the class two songs, which the students performed at the Tu B’Shevat seder.
Our fifth lesson of the school year focused on Zionism and the founding of Israel. We began the morning with a few rounds of “Maklot,” an Israeli game that challenged students to jump over three sticks spread increasingly far apart. From here we began our introduction to Zionism and Zionist ideas; students selected roles, donned costumes, and performed a short play presenting Theodor Herzl’s vision of a Jewish state and the Jewish community’s responses to it in dramatic form. After the performance, the class had a great discussion that explored Herzl’s reasons for wanting a Jewish homeland and the opposition he faced from many gentiles as well as Orthodox and Reform Jewish leaders. Imagining that they were alive during the late 19th/early 20th century, students reflected on whether or not they would have been eager—like many young Jewish people of the period—to join the Zionist movement. Next, Sarah came to teach the regular music and Hebrew lesson. She reviewed the Israeli pioneer song “Zum Gali Gali” with the class, and then taught students to sing “Hatikvah,” Israel’s national anthem. We closed the lesson with a timeline exercise that required students to match undated episodes leading up to the founding of Israel with their correct date. Because the exercise was cut short for students to participate in the Or Emet Tu B’Shevat seder, we will return to it at the beginning of next session.