Sunflowers Morahs

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Cozy Homes for Everyone in Gan Tziporim

(Guest writer. Morah Fran is so much better!! Thank you Morah Yafit for helping me to share what your students are doing.)

Thank you to our special guest, Morah Lilli! We love you! Thank you for being here with us!!


Well, it’s cold outside! And this makes us think about how warm it is inside, and what do animals do because they don’t have warm cozy homes as we do.

Ever our builders, Gan Tziporim got right to work this week making houses for the animals that are safe for the winter. The children really enjoy their collaborative method of learning. And they are really good at it. They speak to each other respectively, taking turns listening to each other and finding solutions to whatever arises. These skills are important as we go through life.

And as these friends have been together for the past few years, they have really bonded. When it comes time to birthdays, they truly enjoy celebrating their friends. They honor their friends by creating a beautiful gift to honor this special day and to remember their special friendship. This week the children celebrated their friend Lauren as she turned five by creating this beautiful keepsake box for her special things. Happy Birthday, Lauren!! We love you!!

And the party really got started baking as they baked a cake for Lauren’s birthday. Delish!

Lot’s of learning! Morah Lilli was so impressed with how well the children are recognizing letters and writing their names- first and last!!

And with how much Hebrew they speak with Morah Yafit!


Thank you for coming last night!!

Shabbat Shalom!!



By |December 14, 2018|

Let It Snow! — Gan Parparim (Butterflies)

Our room was transformed into a winter wonderland, giving the children opportunities to see, taste, smell, touch, and hear. With the CD playing a cheery snow song, the children visited our snow corner, complete with gray sky and snowballs, which felt prickly.

Then we made “snow” play dough using cornstarch and white hand cream. The cornstarch felt soft and looked like snow, and the smooth white lotion also looked like snow. The best part: rolling, patting, and cookie cutting, and prickling our beautiful play dough. “I made a butterfly” (Asher). Dahlia liked squishing it with her fingers. Daniela made a snack.

And, since we’re all about winter and snow this week, what could be more timely than Thursday’s flurries. The snow tasted cold and wet

Parent Night was a big success. It it is privilege for us to be your children’s Morahs.


Have a peaceful and joyous Shabbat,

Morah Sherry and Morah Blimie

By |December 14, 2018|

It is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Winter in the Sunflowers

The snow has been falling in the Sunflowers.  After reviewing the four seasons with the children, we have been reading books together on the topic of winter. One of the books we have read, SNOWY DAY, is about a  boy who likes the snow.  He makes tracks in the snow by walking with his feet inward and outward,  dragging a stick so it looks like the tracks of a snake that slithered by.  The boy goes on an adventure in the snow.  He loves the snow so much that he decides to place a snowball in his pocket for later when he is at home, only to find out it melted.  The boy was okay with that since he was going to do it all over again the next day.  The children made their own footprints with the help of Mr. Potato head’s feet and some toy animals.  They dipped the feet of the toys into shaving cream and then pressed it onto pieces of paper.  The children enjoyed touching and playing with the shaving cream too.

Another way in which it was snowing in the Sunflowers was when the children folded a piece of paper in half and then in half again in order to make snowflakes.  It was great to see how well the children hold and use a pair of scissors. The dexterity that they have in their fingers is magical.  The different designs that came from this exercise were remarkable.  The children also made snowflakes using glue and glitter.  They placed some glue on paper and added the glitter and had a blast shaking the extra glitter off.

Another winter favorite is the book […]

By |December 13, 2018|

It’s Cold Outside!– Gan Paparim (Toddlers)

Some highlights from last Friday…

We spent the last days of Chanukah focused on light. Glow-in-the-dark light sticks filled the children with wonder and delight. Colored Magnatiles that danced on the wall in the Exploration Room were captivating.

We are now turning our focus to an exploration of winter. We began by reading Snowballs by Lois Ehlert and Snow by Marion Bauer. We said it is cold in the winter and we need our heavy coats, hats, and mittens.

How cold is winter? Out came ice cubes and warm water. We noticed as we felt it, that ice is hard and stays in the same shape. We used the word solid. We felt the water and observed how it moved around and didn’t stay the same shape. We used the word liquid. Then we asked the children if they thought the ice would be hot or cold. We invited the children to feel, handle, and taste both the ice and the warm water.  How does they feel? What do they taste like. What else is cold (ice cream, being outside without gloves) or warm (their bath, their house?? We asked them if they like the cold feeling?

Asher said ice is made of water. Daniela said, “it’s freezing!” Elisheva said, “cold!” Ethan licked it. Aryeh, Dovid, and David munched on the ice. They all liked the feeling of the warm water and loved when the ice melted.


We then got all bundled up in our coats and hats and went outside. To our amazement, there was ice on the slide!

We love our cold weather discoveries!!


By |December 10, 2018|

Chanukah Fun in Gan Tziporim

What better way to celebrate the true spirit of Chanukah than to share gifts with the people in our community.  Our school invited several people from our community to visit our classes this week; they included our office staff Miss Karen and Miss Cindy, and some members of Livingston’s Police Department and Fire Department.  Our class gave Miss Cindy a lovely Chanukah plate filled with the cookies they had baked this week.  She was delighted to receive the gift and our appreciation for what she contributes to our community.  She explained to the children how she helps dispense the money to buy the things our school needs.  She then helped the children “light” the Chanukiah and shared her cookies with the children.  Everyone was happy with that!  We also had a visit from two police officers, Officer Kevin and Officer Joy.  It is really great that they and other members of the Police Department have come to visit our school.  It helps the children to feel more comfortable with them.

We continued working on the letter “Hh”,  familiarizing the children with the initial phonetic sound as well as practicing writing both the upper and lower case letters.

The open-ended toys, such as the magnetic rods and balls and wooden blocks allow the children to use their imaginations to create all sorts of real and fantastical creations; a magic wand, a sailing ship, a flower, or a variety of shapes.

Besides providing the ability to create all sorts of things, the wooden blocks foster a great deal of collaborative play.  The Lauren and Emily started building a clinic for the people figures, helping heal their many ailments.  This then evolved into building beds for the figures […]

By |December 7, 2018|

Happy Chanukah — Gan Parparim (Toddlers)

On Monday we welcomed the newest member of our class, Dahlia Glatt. For the Glatt family, it is a homecoming as Dahlia’s two older sisters also attended IBECC. The children have been very sweet and are happy to have another friend join us.

Our Chanukah celebration has been non-stop. We made a chanukiah for our class and painted it using many different kinds of brushes. Each day we are counting the number of candles to add to the Chanukiah.

There were so many special things to do this week. A jumping dreidel on a parachute and a singing Chanukah bear were just two of the highlights of music with Morah Jill. And who knew oil comes from an olive? The children were watching Rabbi Rosenblum intently as he helped them to squeeze the juice from the olives. Their eyes were filled with wonder as they watched the oil spin in the centrifuge. It whirled just like a dreidel!!! And when he opened the test tubes they were amazed as he poured the oil into the Chanukiah and lit it!

To help the children understand the joy in giving, as well as receiving presents, we baked cookies sent home in time for Shabbos Chanukah on plates the children decorated themselves. The children had a great time oiling the cooking pan and mixing the batter. We also presented a cookie platter to Karen, one of Suburban Torah’s amazing office staff.


Without a doubt, though, the highlight of the week was the Chanukah party. Having all of you with us was very special.


Wishing you a joyous Shabbos Chanukah.

Morah Sherry and Morah Blimie


By |December 7, 2018|

Let’s Make Olive Oil in the Sunflowers

Rabbi Rosenblum came to school this week to show us how to make olive oil that can be used to light our chanukiot.  First, the children, with the help of the morot, took the pits out of the olives.  It was not so easy to do.  Rabbi Rosenblum then asked for a lot of volunteers to help him. The children sat patiently to see when they would be called up to help. After taking the pits out we then put the olives into a big bucket called an olive press. Next, we turned a handle which pressed the juice out of the olives.  Singing Chanukah songs made to time go by while we waited for all the juice to be drawn out from the olives. Rabbi  Rosenblum then poured the juice into a test tube which he then placed into a scrambler.  It made a really loud noise.  When the timer went off, he took it out of the scrambler and we could see how the oil had separated from the juice.  Rabbi Rosenblum then placed the oil into the chanukiah.  Next, we had to make the wicks.  Rubbing a piece of cotton between our hands a certain way became magical because when finished a wick was made. Rabbi Rosenblum the lit the Chanukiah and the children helped him make the brachot.  Thank you to Rabbi Rosenblum for a fun and exciting experience.

Morah Jill came to sing with us this week.  With the help of a special Chanukah book, Morah Jill reviewed in song the story of Chanukah.  The children then acted it out pretending to be candles standing tall as the flame shining so bright. As the candles […]

By |December 7, 2018|

Chanukah is here in the Sunflowers

The children have been so excited to celebrate Chanukah.  Painting, building, saying the brachot and, lighting our class Chanukiah has been so much fun, just like we are sure the children are doing at home with their beautiful Chanukiah.  The children painted cardboard rolls with Morah Debra while Morah Aimee and laid it out on the floor before we adhered it to our bulletin board. Using tissue paper the flame was ignited.

The children loved working on different projects that reinforced and recreated the Chanukah story and miracle. They loved being part of Judah the Maccabee’s army and creating their very own shield. Watching the children spin the dreidel has been a blast. Their fingers are really getting a workout as they get better and better at it.

Morah Aimee used blocks to retell the story of Chanukah.  The children built the Beit Hamikdash and then the children became the Greeks and knocked it down.  While cleaning up the Beit Hamikdash the children discovered the menorah, like the one they had in the real Beit Hamikdash, by building one out of blocks. Finally, the one remaining vile of oil that lasted for eight days instead of one, shined as the children used mini lights for the flame.  What a beautiful way to show their creativity.

Happy Chanukah,

Morah Pam, Morah Aimee, and Morah Debra




By |December 5, 2018|

Gan Tziporim Draidels, Olives and Fun

What better way to start Hanukkah than a wonderful singing session with Morah Jill!  There were songs and games about dreidels.  Hanukkah candles glowed and danced and finally melted.  And who could resist “five little latkes sizzling in a pan!”  This all occurred first thing Monday morning and set the mood for the week.


The children learned several games this week relating to the Hanukkah theme.  They continued practicing spinning their dreidels in order to improve on their skill when playing the dreidel game.  This game and several other games twhich were played at the Hanukkah  aught the children many things.  The children learned how to follow directions, math skills were used to count how many chocolate chips they lost or won,  patience and waiting for one’s turn was introduced as necessary qualities, and good fine motor ability and eye/hand coordination was required to get a dreidel to spin. The children enjoyed decorating some of the game boards with watercolors, crayons, and markers.

The letter “Hh” has been introduced in written and verbal form.  The children are also being exposed to the lower case “h” and getting a little practice with that as well.  The initial phonics sound for “H” was explained as the sound we make when we laugh. Words such as: hammer, heart, hurt, horse and hat were thought up.  The children practiced writing the letter.

Plain wooden blocks are the most wonderful open-ended toy in existence.  These pictures demonstrate the variety of things the children have thought up, either alone, or in collaboration with other children.

An informative and entertaining time was had by all with Rabbi G and the olive press.  The children were able to squeeze […]

By |December 5, 2018|

Thanks for coming to the Sunflowers Chanukah party!

We had so much fun with you this morning! Thanks so much for coming!!

Happy Chanukah!








By |December 5, 2018|