December 7, 2012
23 Kislev 5773
Dear Nevonim Parents,
We have had a fun-filled week of Hanukkah learning. All week we have been singing Hanukkah songs (including with Melita), reading Hanukkah books: favorites have included "Herschel and the Hanukkah Goblins" and the "Golem's Latkes". We made chanukiyah paintings over several days and many children wrote the words in Hebrew and English. On Monday we lit a candle in the dark to see why light is so important and special this time of year. Also over several days, we made many tie dye paper towel art which we are turning into stained glass for windows and shades for candles so we can make a giant chanukiyah out of them. We started writing our own Hanukkah play (which some of you willl see on Monday if you come to the classroom for our 9-10:00 family event). We rehearsed the play several times, so it should be good! On Thursday in circle we played an imaginary ball game and then an imaginary latke game. We made a giant cardboard chanukiyah for our wall. We counted out how many candles we need for all 8 nights of Hanukkah and discovered that it is 44! Today in circle, we heard the Hanukkah story again but with a feltboard to illustrate it.
We also did Havdalah with Nachshonim. Menachem came in on Wednesday to teach us this week and next week's parashot both of which are about Joseph the Dreamer. We learned how not everyone understood his dreams - you can check out more detail on the video link that Menachem sent. Conveniently for us, Menachem was wearing a very handsome, pink shirt that day because we have been talking a lot in class about how pink and purple are not just colors for girls (since we have been hearing a good deal of teasing to the contrary). In honor of this color diversity and to avoid stereotypies (in Berkeley?), we are officially making next Tuesday "Pink and Purple Day". We are encouraging children and teachers to wear pink or purple if they have or can borrow it, or we will provide pink and purple paper crowns so that we can all celebrate these colors. We learned an interesting fact today by observing our rat Boris (who is a boy); he seeks out and prefers pink above all other colors. We also read a book by Kevin Henkes, Morris and Chloris, But Mostly Delores" which features a mouse named Boris and always addresses gender stereotyping of children's activities.
We also have read a fabulous book several times this week called "How Full is Your Bucket/" which addresses why people are sometimes unkind to each other and how it fills us up more to be treated kindly and to be kind.
It was a good week with rain, twin birthdays and a busy holiday coming up!
Chag Sameach, Shabbat Shalom,
Caitlin, Ruth and Shirlee