Congregation Netivot Shalom Preschool seeks to create a stimulating and enriching educational environment for each and every child.
We are devoted to helping children learn socialization skills, building their self-confidence and teaching them the preliminary skills to explore and experience the world independently from their parents.
In addition, we seek to ignite a spark in each child to lay claim to her or his Jewish heritage and commit him or her to a lifetime passion for learning.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Hashavuah - Nachshonim

February 22, 2013
12 Adar, 5773
Shalom Nachshonim Families,
The past couple of weeks have been short, yet very exciting as we prepared for Purim. Here are the highlights of what went on in the kitah the last two weeks.
First of all, we would like to mention that we now have two new faces in our kitah! We are happy to welcome Dvir and Izzy into our community!
Purim Preparations
-We have been telling the story of Purim with the use of our finger puppets.
-We brought down the puppet theater from Lauren's office and we have been playing with our puppets.
-We have been singing lots of Purim songs in Hebrew.
-We made groggers by taping two paper cups together and filling the space with plastic beads.
-We have been reading Purim books
-The animal masks that we pulled out of dress up bin are a big hit.
-The Nevonim children prepared some cookie dough for us and we made Hamentaschen for Purim.
-This Friday, we had a Purim parade right before pretend Shabbat. Then we had they pleasure of hearing Liora, Asher's Ima, share with us her version of the Purim story.
-Last week we had Caitlin in the classroom a couple of days when Anna was out. It was nice to have her company those couple of days.
-Last week, some of our friends from the Nevonim kitah came to join us for snack and music with Melita.
-Last week we took the easel outside and the children used wet wipes to get it clean.
-This week, we noticed that the carrots we planted a few weeks ago finally came up!
-We have been enjoying the daffodils that have bloomed in our play yard.
-Along with all of that, we continue to take care of our tzmachim/plants that are on our window sill as well as practicing Tzaar Ba'alei chaim/ the mitzva of taking care of living creatures. We enjoy picking a name everyday to see who will be feeding our guinea pigs and who will be changing their water.
We hope everyone has a pleasant weekend.
Shabbat Shalom,
Ofra and Anna

HaShavuah - February 22

February 22, 2012

Adar 12 5773
Dear Nevonim Parents,
Well, two short weeks of Purim fun was packed with activities and excitement. We told the Purim story, in many forms, with actors, with puppets, and with performances of all kinds. We sang and danced to "Leyztan Katan" (small clown) and we made our own clowns to play with. Many of us made maseychot (masks) and rashanim (nolsemakers) and keterim (crowns) which we decorated with glitter. We baked many hamantashen, making the dough and shaping the triangular cookies ourselves. We made shalach manot baskets and had great fun delivering them today. With Melita, and on our own, we sang "Shalosh Pinot" (3 corners has my hat) and we eventually were able to omit all the words! We had a great time reading our new books including "The Purim Superhero." Our celebration culminated in our parade today. Thanks to all our participants.
Rabbi Menachem came to teach us about this week's parashah which describes the mishkan. It inspired us to decorate our own mishkan shalom in the classroom. We also really enjoyed the opportunity to learn about Chinese New Year's with Rikki and her mother. We learned how to say Happy New Year, and some other phrases in Chinese. We talked about what was similar to Rosh HaShanah and what was different. We also got to see how words are written in Chinese and we had the treat of Chinese foods for snack. Thank you Pam!
Chag Purim Sameach,
Nevonim Teachers
Caitlin, Ruth and Shirlee

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

HaShavuah - Nachshonim

Hashavuah She'avar/Last week
February 11, 2012
1 Adar, 5773

Shalom Nachshonim Families,
Last was another exciting week in the kitah. Here are the highlights of our learning and play.
Plant life
-We continue to nibble on our sunflower greens that we sprouted a couple of weeks ago.
-Josh and his Ima Deb gifted us some delicious mayer lemons and some lovely herb plants that we plan to plant in the play yard.
-We compared various citrus fruit such as tangerines, grapefruit and lemon. At lunch time we sliced them all up and got to taste them all.
-Ofra has been sharing her very large grapefruit with the children at lunch every since we did our comparison.
- We were waiting for some action to happen with the carrot tips that we placed in water. We are waiting patiently. Then we noticed that one of the little tiny leaves is getting larger! We also noticed a couple of little roots are growing larger to drink the water.

-We have new documentation boards hanging in the kitah and in the hallway. The children have been checking them out and giving us words to place next to their pictures.
-On Wednesday we cooked pancakes together for snack. Anna did the flipping. As always when we cook, we measured our ingredients and watched how they changed with the heat of the skillet. We ate them with honey.
-On Thursday, the children helped dry the play structure out the yard with rags because it had rained that morning. They were then able to climb without slipping on puddles.
-We brought over a toy high chair from the other kitah for our baby dolls and now the children have somewhere to place baby dolls when they are being fed.
-We had some talk about the upcoming chag of Purim and costumes.
We have a very special book bag that we are now sending home with the children. In the bag is a book called "Baby Owls", there is a journal with blank pages, and a stuffed Baby Owl doll.
Every week we will take turns and the book bag will be sent home with a different child for the week. At home, parents can help their children document some words that the children share about their week with baby owl in the journal that is provided. The children can draw pictures, you can past images, you can write words, anything that gives us a glimpse of the owls experience is perfect.

Shavuah tov l'kulam/ have a good week everyone
Ofra and Anna

Friday, February 8, 2013

HaShavuah - Nevonim



February 8, 2013

28 Shevat 5773


Dear Nevonim Parents,


After talking about the earth last week, we moved very organically into talking about the ocean and underwater life this week. We sang many water and shark songs, in Hebrew and English. We played aquarium train and all chose sea creatures to be. On Thursday, we had the opportunity to study a real whale skeleton set up in the social hall by the Berkeley school. Even though it was only a baby whale, it took up the entire room! We learned about whales and how they eat. We discussed dolphins and other mammals and compared them to fish and reptiles. We played sharks and minnows, sardines and Yam Yvashah (Sea/Dry Land).


We made clocks and talked about how we measure time. We learned the word Chai (life) and why 18 is a special number for Jews, now that we have eighteen children in our class! We spelled the word with our bodies, using Aleph Bet yoga, and we counted up that chet is 8 and yud is 10, therefore 18 is the number for life.


We changed our writing area so that there are only writing materials there, and we have produced a great outpouring of children's writing, including several books (and even series of books!) Look forward to more writing as many of our children are right there, developmentally.


We did splatter art. We sang with Melita including a clock song the day we were learning about clocks.) Menachem came to teach us about this week's parashah Mishpatim and so we talked about rules and laws and why we need them.


Have a Shabbat Shalom,


Nevonim Teachers

Caitlin, Ruth and Shirlee

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

HaShavuah - Nachshonim

Feb. 4, 2013
24 Shvat, 5773
Shalom Nachshonim Families,

We have been very busy in the kitah the last couple of weeks. This is information from the past, but it is not too late to let you know about what we were up to.
A couple of weeks ago was the week of Tu B'Shvat: Here are the highlights of our week, a couple of weeks ago.
exploring trees and plants
-We talked a lot about the upcoming chag/holiday of Tu B'Shvat. We sang lots of songs about trees.
- We continue to water our succulents in the window
- We began the process of sprouting sunflower seeds by soaking them in water overnight. We then sprinkled the soaked seeds over small containers of soil. The first few days the seeds were covered and the children helped water them every day to ensure that they grew.
- Laney and Ima Pamela gifted a very cool poster of a print that an artist made with the rings of a tree trunk.
- We noticed a similar pattern of rings in the wood in our science area.
-Ofra brought in carrot seeds that she had grown in her garden. We had a chance to see how the seeds look on the plant and we talked about how they were all once little flowers.
-We planted the carrot seeds in the planter box out in the play yard.
Tu B'Shvat
-We went out on a field trip to Strawberry Creek Park. We made the short stroll to the park. We had a chance to cross the bridge over the creek, play on the play ground and run around on the basketball courts. It also rained on us a little bit. Since we had been talking a lot about trees, we gathered a few sticks while we were there.
- We brought the sticks back to school and the children have been playing with them in the play dough.
- We had a Tu B'Shvat Seder. We went up to the art room and Rabbi Shalom Bochner led our Seder. We learned about the various foods that we eat on Tu B'Shvat.
-The children have been collaging at the easel by sticking scraps and bits of paper to wet paint.
Last week: Here are the highlights of last week in the kitah
exploring trees and plants.
-We observed that the sunflower seeds we soaked and placed on dirt were getting taller. We sprayed them with water everyday and soon, the first two leaves of the sprout turned green, which when they are ready to be eaten. We have been eating our sprouts we have grown. When we pull them out, we can see the roots that have grown in the dirt.
-We watered the seeds we had planted in the dirt the week before. We are still waiting for something to come up.
-We have been reading "The Carrot Seed" by Ruth Krauss. We will do what the little boy in the story did, we will keep watering and waiting.
-We are conducting an experiment that Tobie has suggested we try by placing the very top or a carrot in a dish of water. We are wondering if it will grow new green leaves.
-On Tuesday last week, a small group of children from the Nevonim kitah joined us for snack and music with Melita.
-We made paintings with paint and Q-tips on small sheets of paper.
-We have a new documentation board hanging in the hallway of outdoor activities. We have been gathering quotes from the children to write on the board.
-Colin joined us last Wednesday when Anna was out.
We are looking forward to more interesting activities, play and fun this week.
Shavuah Tov
Ofra and Anna

HaShavuah - Nevonim


February 1, 2013
Shevat 21, 5773
Dear Nevonim Parents,
We went from looking at all of outer space to focusing on our own planet earth. We continued themes of Tu Bshvat, Tsaar Baalei Chayim (taking care of living things) and Baal Taschit (Do not destroy). We made earth pictures. Some of us took a nature walk. We planted seeds in our garden. Some of us made paper models of Boris, our kitah rat. We made many paper collages, using recyled paper of course.
We sang with Melita. Rabbi Menachem came to teach us about this week's Torah portion - we practiced listening without seeing and we learned how Moses received the Torah. We started a new school to home connection by sending home a toy Corduroy bear (based on the books by Don Freeman) with a notebook to record his adventures.
Thursday, we had a fabulous trip to the Tilden Botanical Garden with a custom tour from Naomi's Savta Irene. We saw many lovely native California plants including poisonous snowberries (white berries left on bare branches), edible cactus fruit called tuna, many kinds of trees such as redwoods and pines, and succulent plants that made their own powdery sunblock! Thank you so much to all the parent an caretaker drivers! A big special today to Irene who graciously taught us, brought us tasty tree fruits and gave us seeds (California poppy and parsley) to bring back to school.
Today, we said l'hitraot to Asher as he starts a bridge kindergarden program on Monday! We wish him well and look forward to seeing his smiling face when he drops off or picks up Dinah!
Shabbat Shalom,
Nevonim Teachers,
Caitlin, Ruth and Shirlee