G’mar chatimah tovah – we hope the children’s gift of honey cake added some sweetness to the hag and your New Year.  They certainly enjoyed the process of measuring, pouring, and mixing the ingredients.  They also learned about two new ingredients – baking soda (to add softness) and baking powder (to add height).  We stressed the need for cleanliness when cooking and baking so as not to spread germs.  Everyone carefully washed hands prior to baking and some had to repeat the washing if they touched their face or hair; an important lesson.

An important value and life lesson of the holidays is to care for others – both our family and friends and the world around us.  To bring this to an understandable and accessible level for the children we discussed what it means to be a friend – how to get along with friends and how to show we care about them.  The children contributed the concepts that they need to share their toys, take turns, and accept different ideas.  They can give a hug when a friend is hurt. We also read the book, Making Friends by Fred Rogers, which discussed similar thoughts and gave advice on dealing with differing opinions.  Another value the children are familiar with is the giving of tzedakah.  We defined tzedakah as following Hashem’s “rules” and helping others is part of that.  The children enjoy singing the tzedakah song each morning as they put their pennies in the box.  Further discussion involved what the tzedakah money might help do.  The children understood that the money that is contributed could help people who don’t have enough money buy clothing and food or toys for children who may not have much.  We read the book, The Very Best Place for a Penny by Dina Herman Rosenfeld, which turns out to be a tzedakah box.  So it seemed to follow that it would be great for the children to decorate their own tzedakah boxes.  They painted beautiful watercolor pictures which were cut to fit the front and back of plastic honey bears. They can unscrew the cover whenever they have some money to contribute.

As an aid to a transitional time following lunch, and waiting for friends to finish eating, a new toy, Brain Flakes, was introduced.  The children enjoyed playing with it very much!  It is a great spatial activity and they were quite creative.

Another transitional activity was the Magna-tiles.  The children built unique buildings, created jewelry and used the tiles to become books and ipads with passwords! It was fascinating to watch them create items that we use in real life every day by using their imaginations and their classroom accessories. You have very creative and innovative children.

Guess who came to give a model lesson? Shihan, Sensei, and Senpai had the children thoroughly engaged. The children enjoyed their time learning how to “look, listen and learn” Karate.

The children have spent time exploring all the different toys and areas of our room.  This week the wooden blocks came off the shelves.  There are so many things to build and fix.

We had our first Fire Drill practice this week. The children remembered everything about our safety Fire drills from last year and told us what to do!! The children were able to give us a whole list of ways they know to stay safe from holding hands while crossing the street to walking safely on the steps. We spoke about how sometimes we need to come inside to be safe and sometimes we need to go outside to be safe. They also remembered the alarm sound from when we had fire drills in camp and in school last year. They know it is loud but keeps us safe by telling us to go outside. They told us that when the alarm goes off they need to go right to the door and follow the morah outside without speaking and then to stand in the safety spot and listen carefully for the next dierctions. They were such great teachers for the rest of the classes!! Follow us!! We know what to do!


The children enjoyed Shabbat in the Shul with the Rabbi and during Shabbat party came up with a whole list of Shabbat songs to ask him to sing next week!!

We wish you a Beautiful Shabbat and look forward to more learning about Yom Kippur next week.

Shabbat Shalom!

Morah Fran and Morah Yafit