The snow has been falling in the Sunflowers.  After reviewing the four seasons with the children the teachers have been reading books on the topic of winter. One of the books we have read, SNOWY DAYS, 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 and showing them how 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 THE MITTEN.  It’s about a […]

By |July 2, 2019|

Gan Tziporim

The flower pots made with plaster- of- Paris came out well.  The children were involved with mixing the water into the powder and making sure there were no lumps and no thickening in the bottom of the cup that was used as a mold.  Following the mixing, a smaller cup was inserted into the larger cup to provide the opening in the cup/pot.  The plaster hardened pretty quickly and the next day we peeled the styrofoam cup/mold away from the pot.  The children painted the pots with acrylic paint. Some of the children left parts of their pots unpainted so that the natural color of the pot was visible.  The next step in the decoration process was to glue on small colorful tiles from Israel.  They were instructed to place the tiles in a pattern of their choice – circling around the pot, as vertical lines, or some variation.  Some of the children had other ideas and chose to place many tiles around the pot.  Each pot is attractive and unique.

The next step was to plant a lovely flower in the pot.  We chose pink to remind the children of the pink blossoms on the almond trees in Israel.  The children placed enough soil to cover the bottom of the pot.  Then the plant went in and finally the roots were covered up by the soil.  Last, each plant was given some water.  We provided a little dish for the pot to sit on.  Place the plant in a sunny window and watch it thrive!  

We read the book, Netta and Her Plant by Ellie Gellman.  This book was a perfect accompaniment to our own activity with our plants.  Netta’s class at school also prepares plants […]

By |July 2, 2019|

Making Frogs in Little Beginners

We continued learning about the 10 plagues. After learnnig about ‘Dam’ (blood), and watching the water turn red, we starting learning about the frogs. We are now experts on frogs, we know what color they are and what sound they make we even began creating our own! The kids loved dot painting their froggies green.



By |July 2, 2019|

Gan Tziporim Happy to Be Back

It was lovely to have had a vacation break, but then delightful to return to see our children, families, and teachers.  We decided to have a sharing time so we could learn about what everyone did on their winter break.  Some of us had the opportunity to travel on cruises or visit other places (Mexico, Florida, Israel), while others relaxed and had playdates or visited fun places like Imagination Station.  This was a good chance for the children to have practice organizing their thoughts and learning to express themselves in front of a group. They enjoyed all the attention too.
We thought it would be beneficial to continue with the review of the Hebrew alphabet.  The children worked on the letter Gimel, cutting and gluing pictures of words with the initial sound of the Gimel.  The words were: gahl – wheel; gamal – camel; and gezer – carrot.  The children are becoming more proficient in their cutting skills as well as their Hebrew literacy.

Since we discussed and celebrated trees for Tu B’Shevat, we decided to expand the theme of growing things by doing an experiment with beans.  First the children watched a stop gap video of beans growing in the ground.  They were able to see the roots, stems and leaves sprouting.  We had the children count out five red beans and place them on wet paper towels.  They then folded the towels over the beans and inserted them in zip lock bags. The bags were placed on the window sill. We will wait a week and then check to see what has happened to the beans.  Will they look like the beans we saw in the video?
 It’s always fun to pay a visit to […]

By |January 31, 2019|

Finding Our Shadow in The Sunflowers

We were so excited to come back to school this week. We welcomed back the children and they welcomed the teachers. Everyone had a chance to share what they did over the break.

We reviewed our discussion about hibernating. We remembered that it is very hard for animals to find food outdoors in the winter time. The ground may be frozen. Many plants and berries don’t grow. Lakes and streams may freeze over and the animals can’t find fish and underwater plants to eat. So, many animals hibernate; they take a long winter rest. Their heart slow down and their breathing slows down and they do not need so much food to eat. The children in the Sunflower class love to practice hibernating!! They may even ask you to join them!!

We finished up our unit on hibernation and we started to talk about Groundhog Day. The Morot explained to the children the myth that if a groundhog comes out of his home and sees if he sees his shadow, there could be 6 more weeks of Winter. If he does not, then Spring could come early. Using the overhead projector, we tried to find our own shadows. Each of the children had a turn to stand in front of the light and each of them struck a pose! This was so much fun.

The children created a groundhog puppet using a paper bag.They glued on his eyes, ears, and a nose. They also glued on his body and BIG white teeth. After they were dry, we got to play with them and make them move.

We also sang 2 songs about a groundhogs:

By |January 30, 2019|

Look who came to visit the Sunflowers!

In the Sunflowers Classroom we have been fortunate to have some wonderful visitors. Ms. Sharon Kessel from the Eye of Hope came with her dog Quill. Quill is training to become a seeing eye dog. We explained to the children that not everyone is able to see. Quill and other dogs help these people get around. Ms. Kessel showed us what BRAILLE is. It is special raised dots that represent each letter in the alphabet so a vision impaired person can read. The vision impaired also use a walking stick to help them get around. Seeing eye dogs like Quill learn to follow commands and to feel out the environment to make sure it safe for the person. At the end, all of the children enjoyed petting Quill. This was a wonderful experience for everyone.

Thank you to Daniella in the Toddler Class for celebrating her birthday with the entire school. Her family brought in UNCLE JOHN’S PUPPET SHOW. The children were entertained with a magic show followed by a fantastic puppet show. In the magic show, the children saw Uncle John pull a rabbit out of his hat, a card trick, after ripping up tissue paper he made it turn into a hat. Uncle John made a drawing board come alive. He drew a face on a white board and then made it move. This was the favorite trick. The puppet show was made up of puppets from our favorite children’s TV shows. Ernie and Bert and The Count from Sesame Street, Barney, Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and Bob the Builder to name a few. The children enjoyed singing all of their favorite songs; WHEELS ON THE BUS, IF […]

By |January 18, 2019|

Trees, Puppets, and Vacation in the Toddlers

The children had a taste — literally — of Tu B’Shevat, as they sampled dried figs, raisins, and apricots. Elisheva, Aryeh, and Dovid love liked the apricots and (almost) everyone enjoyed their raisins. We played “pin the fruit” on the tree as another way to celebrate the holiday.

Each child also made their own tree, which incorporated natural materials in the design. This free-form project honed fine motor skills as well as decision making and personal expression as each child decided where to glue the branches and the number and colors of the flowers. We hope you enjoy it when celebrating Tu B’Shevat at home.

Thank you to the Goldenthal family for hosting Uncle John’s Puppet Show in honor of Daniela’s 3rd birthday. The entire school shrieked with laughter at the antics of Sesame Street puppets and were astounded by card tricks and a rabbit jumping out of a hat.

Daniela was delighted with the treasure box our class made for her. When asked what she would put in it, she excitedly said “new treasures.”

Thank you to Elisheva and the Herrera family for our delicious healthy snack of clementines and peaches.

It’s hard to believe that vacation marks the halfway point of the school year. The childrens’ growth — physical, emotional, and social — is remarkable. We hope that you all have a wonderful vacation during which many new memories are made.

Thank you for sharing your children with us.

Morah Sherry and Morah Blimie

By |January 15, 2019|

Gan Tziporim are getting ready for Tu B’Shvat

The children are reviewing the Hebrew letters they have learned so far and are creating a book which will eventually include all the letters they will learn this year.  So far they have reviewed aleph and bet and also some words that begin with these letters – for bet we have balone (balloon), bayit (house), and bahnahnah (banana).  The children have also been asking to write in their journals.  Besides some of their own ideas for stories, we have been guiding them by asking them to draw a self-portrait and then answering questions about themselves.  They have provided their full names, where they live, age, who they live with, eye and hair color, and favorite foods and toys. It will be fun to check these journals out in several years to learn who they were at age four and five.
 We don’t know if the children are experimenting with height or were influenced by the pictures and fantasy play about Rapunzel that has been very popular in our class! They usually build structures with the blocks that are lower and spread out but now there is this tower.  They understood that there was a limit with how tall the structure would be before it would topple over.  Great math/physics problems.  
Quill, the seeing eye puppy came for a visit.  Her trainer explained all about blind people and how they have a need for help in getting around.  The dogs are highly trained to ignore […]

By |January 13, 2019|

Quill Comes to Visit — Gan Parparim (Butterflies)

The highlight of our week was meeting and petting Quill, a beautiful seeing eye puppy fostered by Sharon Kessel. In preparation for his visit, we talked about how some dogs are helpers for people whose eyes don’t work very well. (When Ethan heard the word “helper,” he said, “like the rabbi.”)  We also read Spot Goes to the Circus.
Not only did the children have the opportunity to pet him (the fur was soft), they were also able to see and touch a harness and cane. It was a truly memorable experience that brought doing mitzvot to life.
We continued our focus on Tu B’Shevat. Every day we sang “Happy Birthday Dear Trees.” We began making our own trees using natural materials and loose parts. The wood chips and tree stump figured prominently in our free play.
And finally, we returned to the Exploration Room to investigate its newest addition- an engaging hands on activity board created with love by the ingenious Sheina Herrara, mother of Shalom Nissim and Elisheva. This amazing activity board represents what the Exploration Room is all about: the opportunity for the children to examine by touch, sight, and sound the use of every day objects. Thank you, Sheina, for this invaluable addition to IBEEC.
Elisheva was Shabbat Ema and Aryeh was Shabbat Abba. The dinosaur once again came to visit as well as some animals on their way to shul.
Wishing you a peaceful and joyous Shabbat.
Morah Sherry and Morah Blimie

By |January 13, 2019|

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|