Hashvuayim (2 weeks)
November 16, 2012
Kislev 2, 5773
Dear Nevonim Parents,
Last week, on Monday, Malka came for Havdalah, on Tuesday Melita came for shira, and on Wednesday, Rabbi Creditor came to the kitah to teach us about the Torah parashah "Chayei Sarah"; he told us the story of how Isaac and Rebecca met in the desert, how when he saw her, he "fell off his camel!" The children loved this take on the story, and proceeded to make a large paper mache camel over several days. Other children made 3 dimensional house models including a desert scene, complete with an ohel (tent) like Abraham and Sarah lived in. On Wednesday, we also had a visit from Josh Kornbluth (as you know from a previous email), we loved learning from him the difference between oboes and our elbows and he even let some of us try blowing into the reed from his instrument - it was quite lively.
All week children explored more math and sets with a game called Rummikub and all of us continued our exploration of Peter and the Wolf with lots of plays, books and learning about mammals.
This past week, we enjoyed conferences with parents on Monday. We enjoyed Melita's visit on Tuesday and we worked at showing her "cavod" respect. We decorated notes for parents teaching them a few of the many Jewish values we have been learning all year, cavod (respect), chesed (lovingkindness) and derech eretz (table manners). We finished our paper mache camel and the children mixed and chose the paint for his body. We have been so excited about Peter and the Wolf that we, as a group in circle, wrote our silly version of the story entitled "Pizza and the Wolf". We are working on writing it down and choosing instruments to represent the new characters. We will keep you posted.
On Wednesday, we really enjoyed hachnasat orchim (welcoming visitors) as Saba Stu and Abba Peter joined us with their instruments, knowledge and humor. We heard and saw Stu's saxophone, clarinet (the cat in Peter and the Wolf) and his bass clarinet (bigger and lower). We got to see and hear Peter play a cardboard tube (which he taught us made higher sounds the smaller it got), a seashell, as well as his tuba. We heard them play the eensy weensy acavish (spider), parts of Peter and the Wolf, Yankee Doodle, ABCD as well as a fun version of Mayim to which we joined in song. We learned about how different instruments make sounds, how vibration plays a role in making sounds, how mouthpieces and reeds work, and how much fun musicians seem to have.
We also welcomed Rabbi Menachem who taught us about the parashah this week which tells the story of Jacob and Esau who both sought their father's blessing. We learned how Jacob pretended to be Esau by covering his smooth arm with something hairy so his blind father would think it was Esau. Today, from Anna, we heard more about the lentil stew with which Jacob bought Esau's birthright - (nice to know that sibling rivalry is not just in our own families!)
On Thursday, we made our own musical instruments from recycled objects and we showed them at circle. Because of our election last week, we followed through on our campaign promise of burritos (which the children helped make) and orange juice for snack. After snack, we filled our wagon with the many diapers and baby supplies that have been donated (thank you to all the donors!) and we took a field trip to the Womens Drop-In Center - we got lots of thank yous and smiles as we crowded into their building. We enjoyed ourselves afterwards by playing at the adjacent park.
All week we have been working on a huge rainstick by nailing nails inside a big cardboard tube. It was a wonderful project that allowed the children to hammer easily and safely and produced a lovely sounding instrument. We learned about notes, composers and created a water xylophone at circle. We also sang lots of Shabbat songs.
Caitlin, Ruth and Shirlee