Hebrew School Happenings by yaofenjin


									     MAY 2011

                                             H e b rew S c h o o l
                                             Neve Shalom, Metuchen, NJ                                            Volume VI, Issue IV

           In This Newsletter:
           Read about upcoming                                     We are proud of our kids!
            classroom lesson plans
                                             Following the Tsunami in Japan and the Tornados in the South, the students voted to
           Plan to attend upcoming events
                                             donate their Tzedakah money to these causes. We collected and sent $1,000.
           Dates to save
                                             Joshua Anes, Elizabeth Binstein, Andrew Podob and Sabrina Szteinbaum will be at-
                     Go to                   tending the AIPAC conference in Washington DC from May 22-24.
                                             Josh Ull, a student at our Hebrew High and a Madrich, was elected Regional
          to register to see our many
                                             President of Hagalil USY.
           activities, photos & more

                                             Videos of many of our classes chanting parts of the Seder can be viewed on our
                                             Activit-E website (video area) and hundreds of photos are available for to see or
                                             order in the Photo al-
                                             bum sections.

                                             The Hai class (7th
                                             grade) visited the NY
                                             Museum of Jewish
     DATES TO SAVE:                          Heritage and the
                    MAY                      Confirmation Class
                                             (10th grade) went to the
22 Last Day of Classes
   At 10:30 there will be an                 new Museum of
   Awards Program                            American Jewish
                                             History in Philadelphia.
31 Deadline for Registration
                                             We thank the parents
                                             who drove and Ari Opitz
                   JUNE                      who was the main
8        Confirmation Service 8pm

               SEPTEMBER                     Please register for next
                                             year’s classes by May
11       First Day of Classes
                                             31. You can find the
                                             forms on the Activit-E
                                             site (in the download-
                                             able forms section) or at
                                             NeveShalom.net under
                                             Education slide down to

                                             We wish everyone a
                                             WONDERFUL summer
                                             and look forward to
                                             seeing you next fall.
Page 2 MAY 2011
                          He b rew S c ho o l Happe ni ng s

                          GAN K’TAN                                 Susan Kashan
                          The children are doing great with their Hebrew skills! We have infused learning Hebrew colors into each
                          week’s coloring, so the yeladim are pretty well versed in Hebrew colors - try testing them! This is the first
                          class ever that will actually finish the entire Hebrew workbook!! We learned the letters tet, pay, koof, kaf, chaf
                          and final chaf, zayin. We will finish up with tzadik, final tzadik, vav, and samech.
                          The students completed the Adon Olam! I am sure they will make you proud! Along with our usual Kiddush
                          and Motzi brachot, we recited our brachot for matzah and other Pesach foods. We will recite borei miney mizo-
                  Seder   not for our milk and honey cookies.
                          In the month of April, we studied about Moses and the story of Passover, learning about matzah, slavery,
                          Moses, Pharoah, the Exodus, the ten plagues, the seders, the four questions, the afikomen, Elijah, and what
                          foods are "kosher l'pesach" and which are “chometz.” The students loved crossing our “pretend” Red Sea –
                          what good jumpers they are! It’s hard to say what was more fun – the “candy” mock seder we had with the
                          Hebrew school or the Rugrats Passover movie!
                          In May, we will briefly discuss Yom Hashoa, the day of Holocaust remembrance, on the kids’ level. We will
                          look at the globe to see where Israel, Iran (modern-day Persia), and Egypt are. Then we will pretend that we
                          are in Israel for Yom Hazikaron, where everyone stops everything when the sirens are sound. We’ll do a dot-
                          to-dot, revealing Israel’s emblem of the menorah with the surrounding olive tree branches. We’ll sample an
                          Israeli food, perhaps pita bread, the basis for Israeli falafel, and discuss Haifa, Eilat, the Dead Sea, and Jerusalem,
                          finding them on the map.
                          We’ll read about Yom Ha’atzma’ut, Israel’s Independence Day, and find out that Israel was established as a
                          Jewish country in 1948. We’ll look at a scrapbook of Israel, including El Al airline tickets, pictures, samples of
                          money, bus tickets, etc. We’ll talk about Kibbutzim and the colors kachol (blue) and lavan (white), represent-
                          ing the colors on the Israeli flag. We can’t wait to make milk and honey cookies, in celebration of the state of
                          Israel, the land flowing with milk and honey. We’ll look at pictures of a former Neve Shalom teacher cultivating
                          the land of Israel and see how parts of Israel looked before trees were planted and then after. We’ll dance the
                          Hora and rejoice.

                          KEN CLASS (1st Grade) Kim Schwartzman
                          The Ken class has continued to practice and learn the Hebrew letters. We have been improving our writing
                          and recognizing of the letters that we already know and we are learning how to write new ones every week.
                          Over the coming weeks we will continue to write and learn new Hebrew letters in addition to practicing the
                          old ones!
                          Over the last few weeks the Ken class has learned a great deal about two very important Jewish Holidays. We
                          have learned all about Purim and the story of Queen Esther in addition to acting in a Purim skit with the Gan
                          class. Through the skit we learned about the evil Haman and his plan to get rid of all the Jewish people. Queen
                          Esther and her uncle, Mordechai, stop that plan from actually happening and save all of the Jewish people in the
                          land of Shushan. The Ken class learned that this victory for the Jewish people was a great accomplishment and a
                          big win and therefore, Purim is a happy holiday in which we have a custom to give the needy Mishloach Manot.
                          In class we got to make our very own Mishloach Manot to bring home to our families in order to enjoy them
                          with all. More recently the Ken class has learned about the Jewish Holiday of Passover. The Ken class learned
         Purim Carnival   all about the Seder and the different types of foods that we eat and why we eat them in addition to participat-
                          ing in a school-wide mock Seder! As a class we even got to decorate our very own Passover Seder plates and
                          Elijah cups in order to use at our very own Seder's at home! Over the next few weeks we will take the time to
                          learn about counting the Omer and the upcoming holiday of Shavuot.
                          The Ken class has become experts on the story of Moses and the exodus from Egypt. The Ken class learned
                          that Pharoah was an evil man and would not let the Jewish people be free of slavery. In order to get Pharoah to
                          change his mind, we learned that Moses and G-d sent him and his people Ten Plagues. We also learned that
                          after the last plague Pharoah let the Jewish people go free however, he changed his mind and chased after the
                          Jews and therefore, Moses had to split the Red Sea. The Ken class really enjoys the story of Moses and the Ten
                          Plagues and therefore, over the next few weeks we will continue to learn about Moses and we will learn all
                          about how he got the Torah from G-d on Mt. Sinai.
                                                                                                                                       Page 3
V o lu me VI , Is su e I V

HEBREW              Elise Berlin
Kitah K’tana loves working in our Alef Bet workbook. We read, learn how to write our letters, and play
matching games all from this wonderful book. Most of the children recognize all of the Hebrew letters and can
name the letter with its matching sound. We learned many vowels including Kamatz, Patach, (both aah sounds),
Cheerek (eee), and Segol (eeh). The children are able to sound out many words. We learned many new words
having to do with Israel. Gelidah-ice cream, Vanil-vanilla, shocolad-chocolate, Tut Sadeh-strawberry, Kotel-
Western Wall, Botz-mud, Melach-salt, and Mayim-water are amongst the many.

HOLIDAYS            Rebecca Fish
Kita Kitana (Holidays): The Kita K'tana class performed an amazing Purim play. They worked on learning the
story of Pesach, and the blessings and four questions. We celebreated Pesach in a Hebrew-school wide filmed
Seder. Following Pesach, they will learn about the holidays of Yom Hashoah, Yom Ha’atzmaut, and Shavuot.

ISRAEL               Elise Berlin
Kitah Ktana loves travelling throughout Israel. We went to Jerusalem, the capital of Israel and learned all about
the Kotel-the Western Wall. We went to Haifa-the city that imports and exports goods. We then vacationed
at the Dead Sea. We put Dead sea mud on our hands and let it dry. We washed it off and felt how soft our
hands were. We learned that many people, young and old enjoy floating in the Dead Sea. Our next stop was
Tel Aviv (the city that never sleeps). It is compared to NYC where restaurants, malls clubs and many businesses       Purim Carnival

HEBREW                Cindy Baruch
   First, mazel tov to all the students who did a great job at Consecration! Aleph class has been very busy! We
finished learning all the Hebrew nekudot(vowels). We learned the tzerah(which says EH- similar to the se-
gol).Our tzerah vocabulary words were: kiseh(chair), betzah(egg), etz(tree), esh(fire), aryeh(lion), sofer(writer),
shaked(almond), ken(nest), masechah(mask), chamesh(five), bet sefer(school).
   Purim words were taught and they included: mishloach manot(candy baskets), oznei haman(hamantaschen),
megillah, tzom(fast), melech(king), malkah(queen), rashan(grogger), tachposet(costume), misibah (party), letsan
(clown). Since Purim is such a festive holiday, we made hamantaschen and played Hebrew bingo with Purim
   After Purim, more new words were introduced: shen(tooth), even(stone), gezer(carrot), sha-on(clock), navi
(prophet), perach(flower), yalkut(backpack), tapuach(apple), and tzadik(righteous person).
  To reinforce our reading we play "one chance reading" where the children read from their "lishonei " books
and whoever is "left standing" after reading the words
correctly wins!
After we return from Peasch vacation we will continue
reading from the "lishonei" book, reinforce our He-
brew reading through games, learn about Shavuot
(which is in the beginning of June) and continue our

HOLIDAYS             Rebecca Fish & Shoshana
We are very proud of all the hard work the Aleph
class has done this year! We are finishing up the year
by learning about Pesach and all of the important
blessings that go along with the holidays, as well as
learning about the remaining holidays of Yom
Hashoah, Yom Ha’atzmaut, and Shavuot.

PRAYER              Cindy Baruch
We learned for Pesach- the parts of the seder plate,
the order of the Hagadah, ten plagues, blessing over
the karpas, grape juice, matzah, Ma Nishtanah learning
different songs such as Dayeinu, Who Knows One,
Chad Gadya etc...
Page 4 MAY 2011
                            He b rew S c ho o l Happe ni ng s

                            BET CLASS
                            HEBREW                                   Elise Berlin
                            Kitah Bet learned many new words having to do with Chag HaPesach-the holiday of Pesach. Arba-four, Eser-ten,
                            Mitzrayim-Egyptians, Makot-plagues, Aviv-spring, Avoda-work, Cherut-freedom, Dam-blood, Choshech-darkness,
                            Dayenu-enough, Banim-sons, Chacham-wise, Rasha-wicked, Tam-simple, Sheno Yodeya L’sholl-doesn’t even under-
                            stand to ask, Yayin-wine, and Kos-cup are a few among the many. We learned songs with many new words in
                            them. Each student has a machberet (notebook) with Pesach words written in both Hebrew and English ac-
                            companied by matching pictures. We are looking forward to learning many new words having to do with the
                            holiday of Shavuot-the receiving of the Torah.

                            HOLIDAYS                                Elise Berlin
                            I hope that everyone had a wonderful Pesach. We learned so much about this holiday. Pesach has four names.
                            We learned about the ten plagues and that each plague was specifically given for a reason. For example, Arbe
                            (locusts). The Egyptians forced the Jews to take care of their vineyards and fields, so locusts came and ate eve-
                            rything that grew. We see that the #4 is very symbolic throughout the Pesach seder. There are 4 questions, 4
                            sons, 4 cups of wine, and 4 names of Pesach. We went over many songs that are in the Haggadah. We went
                            over the blessings for the candles for Pesach and the order of the Pesach seder. We learned that we have 3
                            matzot on the table and that the middle matzah is split in half. Through games such as tic tac toe and garbage
                            ball, we reviewed many Passover questions. We had a mock candy seder with the Hazzan and sang many
                            Pesach songs.
                            BIBLE                                      Vera Schreck
                            We have completed the unit discussing the trait of kindness to strangers and animals that our matriarch
                            Rebecca possessed. We went on to the rather difficult topic of the relationship between Esau and Jacob
                            regarding the conflict over the birthright. We had very interesting discussions about the concept of a birthright
                            and the theme of sibling rivalry which is a recurring theme in the Bible. By the end of the school year we will
                            have covered the topic of Jacob and his two wives, Joseph and his brothers (sibling rivalry once again), and then
                            on to the Jews as slaves in Egypt. I will ask students to write a short paragraph on their favorite Bible
                            personality covered this year which they will take home to share with parents.
                            PRAYER                                     Cindy Baruch
                            Kitah Bet has been so busy learning Ashrei. We will be finishing this prayer and will be having a party for all their
                            hard work and effort they put into it!
                            STORIES                                    Ari Opitz
                            The stories class is finishing sharing their own stories that they have written. So far they have done a great job
                            presenting them. Students can still bring in their stories from home to share with the class for the remainder of
                            the school term.

                            GIMEL CLASS
                            HEBREW                                  Shoshana Smolen
                                      In the Gimel Class, we have been studying the Sh’ma and its surrounding blessings. We have already
                            mastered the Yotzer Or and Ahavah Rabbah. Recently we have covered the Sh’ma as well as the G’ulah – the Mi
                            Chamocha. We have read each of these prayers many times to practice reading proficiency, and we have also
                            discussed the content of each prayer, and it’s symbolism in the prayer service. We have also learned the root
                            “Sh’ma” (listen), other associated vocabulary with these prayers, as well as the suffix “cha” (your), and how to
                            define words when they are used. We will finish the year reviewing these roots and terms as well as how to
                            put their knowledge together to understand new words.
          Maccabiyah Game
                            HISTORY                                  Vera Schreck
                            In Jewish History we have been learning about the conflict among the Jewish leadership during the Roman rule
                            of ancient Israel. We had in depth and very interesting discussions on whether or not one of our greatest
                            leaders of that time, R' Yochanan Ben Zakai was a hero or traitor to our nation. After Passover we will con-
                            tinue to discuss the role of the Rabbis in the lives of the Jews in the past and how we view their role in our
                            lives today.
                            PRAYER                                   Rebecca Fish / Cindy Baruch
                            The Gimel class has been working diligently to learn the blessings and prayers that are involved with Pesach.
                            After Pesach, we will be working on learning the beginning of the Amidah prayer. Kitah Gimmel learned the last
                            paragraph of Sh'ma. They reviewed the Kiddush for Pesach, and other songs from the Hagadah.
                            HOLIDAYS                                 Ari Opitz
                            In Holidays class we are going to be learning the history and traditions of Yom Hashoah and we will finish our
                            class plays. The class plays that the students have wrote so far have been great and we still have a couple more.
                                                                                                                                 Page 5
V o lu me VI , Is su e I V

HEBREW                                            Vera Schreck
Daled students continue to strengthen their Hebrew reading skills and their comprehension of
the prayers as we work our way through our text book, S'fatai Tiftach Vol. II. We have done
readings from the Megillah at Purim time and, of course, the Haggadah in preparation for
Pesach. After the Pesach vacation, we will focus on readings from the Siddur as well as complet-
ing the work in our textbook.
HISTORY                                           Shoshana Smolen
The Daled class has been reviewing Jewish history in the transition from the 15 th century in
Western Europe to 18th century Eastern Europe. We spoke about the Spanish inquisition and the fallout from            Seder
it in terms of where the Jewish people would end up. We spoke about the dispersal to Portugal and the subse-
quent expulsion from there and the move eastward. We spoke about growing hostility to Jews in Eastern
Europe and the rise of pogroms. We will finish out the year discussing the move of Jews to America, and how
the families of each of the students came to America.
TORAH TROP                                          Shoshana Smolen
In the Daled class we have progressed to Haftarah trop after the mastery of the basics of Torah trop. We
went over the cantillation marks, noting that although the actual marks are the same, they make different
sounds for Torah and Haftarah. We will finish the year perfecting the Hatarah trop as well as learning some
less common trops.
ISRAEL                                              Ari Opitz
 Israel has been in the news a lot lately as always and we are staying up to date on current events. We are also
going to be discussing the latest news with Osama Bin Laden’s death and how it is going to effect the Middle
East . The students may also feel free to bring in their own current events to talk about in this class.

HOLOCAUST                                       Ari Opitz
The Daled class has been learning more of the background of Hitler coming into power and the events leading
up to Holocaust. We have also started discussing genocides that are happening today and why they are happen-
                                                                                                                   Yom HaShoah

HEBREW                         Osnat Moalam, Shoshana Smolen, Rebecca Fish, Ari Opitz
The four levels continue at their own passes. Each student is learning at their own level.
MITZVOT                        Ari Opitz
The Hai Mitzvah class has been dealing with Talmudic arguments of what is right and what is wrong and dis-
cussing current events and what the Talmud would say about what is going on in the world.
Shoshana Smolen’s classThe Hai Bible class has been learning about the tower of Babel as well as Abraham,
the first Jew. We discussed why the tower of Babel was seen as such a terrible insult to god and simulated the     Museum Trip
building of the tower itself. To demonstrate the
difficulties we attempted to make a house of cards
several stories tall with several limitations, we
played games limiting the use of shared language,
and made model towers. We also discussed
Abraham and his acceptance of monotheism. We
will end the year discussing the various challenges
Abraham met and how he persisted and became the
first Jew.
Lincoln Richman’s class: In the Hai class, we
have been finishing up the story of Abram's transfor-
mation into Abraham, and the story of the birth of
the Jewish people. From the beginning of the school
year, we have covered the book of Genesis from
the creation of the universe to the story of the
Akedah. The students have demonstrated an
outstanding ability to understand the material and
relate to the characters in the stories. Most fasci-
nating is the fact that Abraham was father to both
the Jewish people and the Arab nations. The
students found the concept of the Middle East being
a "family" struggle to be quite compelling. And it
continues into modern times.
MAY 2011
                           HEBREW HIGHlights
                           WORLD RELIGIONS                           Elise Berlin
                           There are many types of religions in this world. Some are monotheistic, some are polytheistic, some have
                           optimistic views and some are based on pessimistic views. Judaism as we know is a monotheistic religion
                           (believing in one G-d) and is filled with optimistic views. We compared the religions of Hinduism, Christian-
                           ity, Islamic, and Judaism. This month, we will be comparing and contrasting Buddhism to Judaism. We will
                           learn why the Buddhist monk gives up all and what the greatest reward is for the true Buddhist. We dis-
                           cussed the warning signs and how a person can be brainwashed by cults. We watched the film “The Wave”
                           to further understand the power that dictatorship has on a person. We learned about anti-semitism and how,
                           unfortunately, we still feel it today. We watched “School Ties”, a movie about a Jewish high school senior
                           who received a scholarship to a private Christian school in order to play football and the hardship he had to
                           face when word got out that he was Jewish. We understand that we must be proud to be Jewish and to be
     Neve Shalom           sure of whom we are.
   Hebrew School
                           WHY BE DIFFERENT                        Elise Berlin
      250 Grove Avenue
      Metuchen, NJ 08840
                           Hebrew high learned that there are two different types of mitzvot in the Torah. Mitzvot between man and
                           man and mitzvot between man and Hashem (G-d). We are currently discussing different types of mitzvot
                           between man and Hashem. Prayer, kashrut, and Shabbat all lie in this category. One of the major purposes of
Phone: 732-548-2238 x 14
                           these mitzvot is to teach us how to become closer to Hashem. In Hebrew, the term Kedushah means coming
Fax: 732-548-2335
                           closer to Hashem. The word Kadosh means special. We are expected to act Kadosh-to raise our life to a
Email: can2r11@aol.com     higher level. If we act in a kind, compassionate way and try to raise our actions, we will bring Kedushah into
                           our lives. We are reminded throughout the day to be Kadosh. Most blessings all have the word Kidishanu
                           (make us holy, special) in it.

    Synagogue Web:         We are in the midst of learning that Shabbat is one special day filled with Kedushah and unites people to
                           Hashem and to each other. We will learn about Kashrut. Fish must have both fins and scales in order to be
   NeveShalom.net          kosher. We will learn that while slaughtering animals, one should cause as little suffering to the animal as
                           possible ( a smooth sharp knife must be used in order to avoid tearing the flesh more than necessary). We
                           will discuss the non mixing of milk and meat and what it entails (separate dairy and meat dishes, utensils,
                           sponges etc).

                           By observing kashrut every time one eats, one will be reminded that he/she is a Jew and has a compassion for
                           animals. When one keeps kosher, we are raising the act of eating to a higher level, bringing kedusha into our
         Trip to Philly    lives. Bringing kedusha allows one to become closer to Hashem.

                                                                                         HOW TO DECIDE
                                                                                         Lincoln Richman
                                                                                         We have discussed the topic of what it means to
                                                                                         be a Jew in the context of a larger world. Speak-
                                                                                         ing about the natural disaster in Japan, we dis-
                                                                                         cussed what would be an appropriate tzedakah
                                                                                         response as Jews and as Americans. Heading
                                                                                         into Pesach and Yom HaShoah, we watched an
                                                                                         episode of the "Gene Simmons" television show
                                                                                         on the A&E Network. Gene Simmons has been
                                                                                         the leader of the band KISS for more than 35
                                                                                         years, but what we learned in that episode is that
                                                                                         he was born in Israel as the son of Holocaust
                                                                                         survivors from Hungary. We watched Gene
                                                                                         Simmons on his emotional trip to visit the Anne
                                                                                         Frank House in Amsterdam, and we had an ex-
                                                                                         cellent discussion about what it means to be
                                                                                         Jewish in the modern world, and what it means
                                                                                         to honor one’s parents.

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