Quiz Central - How Do You Show Appreciation - Lesson Plan

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					            Quiz Central: “How Do You Show Appreciation?” (PAGE 8)
                                      LESSON PLAN BY MIRIAM POLIS
               Before completing the hakarat hatov quiz, students will use the midrash
               about King David and the spider to examine the concept of hakarat hatov.
               Students will also have the opportunity to reflect upon the differences
               between being a recipient and being a benefactor of hakarat hatov.

CONCEPTS AND OBJECTIVES                                       each group to share one answer from their discussion.
k Opportunities to express hakarat hatov may come
                                                              4. Explain that the midrash about David and the two
  in unexpected ways.
                                                              additional texts cited below all share the theme of
k Reflection on hakarat hatov helps us be more                hakarat hatov. Ask students to brainstorm the ways
  appreciative of those around us and our world.              in which all three texts express similar messages
                                                              about hakarat hatov and the ways each text teaches
k It is important to express hakarat hatov to everyone.
                                                              a unique message about hakarat hatov.
                                                              5. To prepare students for the hakarat hatov quiz, bring
1. Before taking the quiz, have students work in pairs
                                                              their attention to the fact that appreciation can be shown
to brainstorm three occasions in their lives when they
                                                              on many levels and is not limited to people. Remind
have either shown or been shown appreciation.
                                                              them of the story they’ve just read and discussed. David
Explain that the term hakarat hatov is the Hebrew
                                                              not only shows his appreciation for the spider’s gifts, but
phrase for appreciation. Students should examine the
                                                              also recognizes that he owes thanks to God for creating
following questions in their pairs:
                                                              the spider. Share with the students that they will be
How does it feel to be appreciated?                           taking a quiz to help them think about the need to
                                                              express appreciation in their own lives and to examine
How does it feel when we appreciate someone else?             how they express appreciation.
When someone does something unexpected for us, do we          Students will independently complete the quiz that
appreciate them differently than when we’re expecting         appears on page 8 of BABAGANEWZ. They may
something to be done for us?
                                                              complete the quiz in the magazine itself or online at
                                                              www.babaganewz.com and print out their answers.
2. Students will jigsaw (one pair will join with
another pair) to share their ideas.                           6. Following the quiz students will have the opportunity
                                                              to write a short journal entry about the quiz. Suggested
3. Students in groups of four will explore the midrash
                                                              focus questions for the entry might be:
about King David aloud. In each group, each of the four
will have a task: one will be facilitator of discussion       Did you agree with your score? Why or why not?
(making certain everyone has the opportunity to share
his or her ideas, and that there is respectful discussion),   Do you think there are various “levels” of appreciation?
one will be responsible for reading the midrash aloud,
                                                              Are some levels more appropriate for some people than
one will be recorder (writing down the thoughts of            others?
those in the group), and one will be timekeeper
(making sure the group ends within the allotted time).        Students could use the Jewish texts introduced in

                                                                                                                            B A B AG A N E W Z T E AC H E R S ’ G U I D E H E S H VA N 5 7 6 4
In their discussions, groups should respond to the            this lesson as a supplementary springboard to their
following questions and write one additional thought          journal entry. For example, they may choose to
question about the midrash:                                   explore one of the following questions:

What can we learn about the kind of person David was from     How as a Yehudi do you embody the characteristic of
the fact that he observes nature?                             hakarat hatov?

Why does David ask God about the spider? Are there any        Several levels of hakarat hatov are seen in the text about
creations for which you have a similar question?              Miriam. After having completed the quiz, how would you
                                                              “rate” those levels?
What is God’s response?
                                                              JEWISH TEXTS
How does David come to appreciate the spider?
                                                              Alphabet of Ben Sira
At the end of the story, why does David express               Seated in his garden, a young Kind David saw a wasp
appreciation to both God and the spider?                      eating a spider.... David spoke to God and asked, “What
                                                              benefit is there from these two You have created in Your
After the students discuss the midrash, bring the
                                                              world? ...Throughout the year the spider spins but makes
entire class together and allow a representative of
                                                                     no clothes....” God replied, “David you make fun of my           river], so the people of Israel waited seven days in the
                                                                     creatures! The time will come when you will need the             wilderness [until Miriam recovered from leprosy].
                                                                     spider and its gifts.” [Years later,] when David was
                                                                                                                                      This source focuses on the idea of “midah k’neged midah”
                                                                     running from King Saul who sought to kill him, David
                                                                                                                                      (measure for measure); because of Miriam’s positive
                                                                     hid in a cave. God sent a spider, which spun a web across
                                                                                                                                      actions on behalf of another, other positive actions on her
                                                                     the entire entrance of the cave. When Saul came to the           behalf result in the future.
                                                                     cave and saw the web across it, he said, “Certainly no one
                                                                     could have been here, for if anyone had, the web would be        How does this text illustrate hakarat hatov?
                                                                     in shreds.” So Saul went away without going into the
                                                                                                                                      Who is showing hakarat hatov? To whom? What is God’s
                                                                     cave. When David came out of the cave and saw the
                                                                                                                                      role in this text? Miriam’s? The people of Israel’s?
                                                                     spider, he wanted to kiss it, and said to it, “Blessed is your
                                                                     Creator and blessed are you!”                                    FOLLOW-UP AND ENRICHMENT
                                                                                                                                      1. Find people in your school or community who
                                                                     Bereishit 29:35                                                  might not otherwise be appreciated (e.g., janitor,
                                                                     And [Leah] gave birth to a son and she said, “Now I              receptionist, person who bags your groceries) and
                                                                     will thank God”; therefore she called his name                   write them short thank-you notes.
                                                                                                                                      2. Begin a class “Hakarat Hatov Log,” where teachers
                                                                     What is the root for the name Yehudah and Yehudim                and students would jot down something they
                                                                     (Jews)? How do these names relate to the word todah              appreciated.
                                                                     (thanks)? [The name Yehudah means “thanks to God.”]
                                                                                                                                      3. Look at the berakhot of appreciation as a class.
                                                                     Why is it significant that Jews are named Yehudim? What          Decide that certain students would be responsible
                                                                     recognition of God’s work does the name reveal?                  for certain berakhot (e.g., when one sees lightning or
                                                                                                                                      a rainbow) and those students would be the
                                                                     What responsibility is emphasized by this name? What
                                                                                                                                      representatives to recite the berakhah for the class.
                                                                     character trait should Jews try to exemplify? Why?
                                                                                                                                      VOCABULARY FOR YOUR STUDENTS
                                                                     Yalkut Shimoni Shemot 166                                         Q KO
                                                                                                                                      E'W      to volunteer
                                                                     Just as a person measures, so is he or she measured….
                                                                     [Just as] Miriam waited for Moshe [to see what                    ] 
                                                                                                                                      KUH                  help
                                                                     would happen when their mother placed him in the                        
                                                                                                                                      KG R7 V\IU           thank-you card
B A B AG A N E W Z T E AC H E R S ’ G U I D E H E S H VA N 5 7 6 4