October 28-November 1, 2013
24-28 Cheshvan 5774
The most fascinating activity emerging in the kitah this week has been the creation of BART trains with magnet tiles. As the week progressed the children extended this idea by making BART tracks and tunnels out of wood blocks, making BART stations out of magnet tiles, and, with some assistance from the teachers, labeling both BART trains and stations. We are hoping to extend the children's exploration with a classroom field trip to ride BART together during the school day. If you are interested in volunteering for this field trip, tentatively scheduled for Thursday, November 14th, Email Ruth (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The library in the kitah/classroom now has due date stickers!
This week the children explored pretend play with different kinds of families. For example, this week there was a family with a mom, a daughter, and two dads. In this family some of the members of the family were royalty, others were not.
The children have been talking about tseivaim/colors. The children whose first language is English have been using the Hebrew words for each color while the children whose first language is Hebrew have been using the English word for each color. Some children also tied yarn of different colors together. Originally the idea was to make a many-colored jump rope. In the end the finished product was too long to be a jump rope. It is now on display in the kitah.
Less interested in placing our pegboard pegs into pegboards, the children have been building tall stacks with them and balancing them in one hand.
We rocked out again this week to the sounds of The Macaroons. Very little dancing this week, instead the children made a rock band with blocks as drums, keyboards, and guitar.
We talked about this week's parsha in which twins are born. This is always more exciting when we have twins in the kitah. We also talked about Yaakov/Jacob dressing up like Esav/Esau. After relating this part of the parsha to the children during circle time we asked the children to share what they like to dress up as on their own. We also talked about the names of the wells that Yizhak/Isaac dug and how these names point toward a model for how to resolve conflict, moving from acting out against others, to acknowledging your feelings, to pausing to think of the best way to proceed, and finally working with our friends to make an agreement that is good for everyone, on our own or with help from our teachers (the first three steps in this process are discussed in relation to this parsha in Rabbi Alan Lew's book Be Still and Get Going).
The children noticed when we had guests in the classroom and prompted us to sing our welcome song, an Arabic welcome song from children's music giant Ella Jenkins, which we translated into Hebrew, "bruchim haba'im." We sang this song again this week to Nachshonim when they came to our class for Havdalah and also at circle time to Ima Jess, who volunteered again to help us with cooking, and congregant Ruth who also volunteered again this week.
The children are having fun playing with our new pretend Shabbat set!
Every week we
-recite some tefilot/prayers at circle time. This week we also sang "Good Morning Boker Tov Tov Tov."
- study Torah with Rabbi Creditor we sing the bracha/blessing for studying Torah.
- have Havdallah with the Nachshonim. This week we turned off the lights and pulled down the shades on the windows to make it feel more like Saturday night.
- the children make an individual challah. We also make two challot for Pretend Shabbat, in shapes inspired by the week's Torah portion, this week a hand grabbing on to a heel in honor of Yaakov's birth and name. The children also decorate the bags for their individual challot.
We practiced a fire drill and an earthquake safety drill this week. We do this every month.
Ruth, Shirley, and William