Grade 7 Día de los muertos celebration

el Día de los muertos

Our Grade 7 Spanish class learned about el Día de los muertos (Day of the Dead), a multi-day Mexican holiday that focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey. As part of the lesson, they enjoyed el pan de muertos and Mexican hot chocolate!

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Social Inequity in Action

Submitted by Rabbi Rebecca Weinstein:

What is social inequity? How do we understand this concept? In our 6th grade Tanakh class, students played a modified version of Monopoly where players had an unequal distribution of wealth and privileges in order to simulate social inequity and better understand the concept. Some players started with twice as much money, while other players only started with half as much, some players went directly to jail if they rolled higher than a seven, other players got to move twice the amount they rolled! Following the game, we talked about how our experience playing Monopoly this way connected to social inequity and how we felt while playing the game. During our debrief, I brought up comments I heard students saying while playing the game such as, “Here let me donate some of my money to you. This is not fair!” to reflect on. By drawing upon their experiences playing Monopoly, students were better able to answer the questions: What is social inequity, how do we understand this concept, and begin to answer, how does our tradition require us to respond?

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Buddy Bench!

Ali Shwartz (Lower School Director of Support Services/School Psychologist) and Tally Gershfield (Counseling Intern) revealed the Lower School’s new Buddy Bench to Lower School students. The Buddy Bench is a place where students can sit to signal to others that they need a friend to play with during recess. Students are encouraged to pay attention to the buddy bench during recess. If someone is sitting on the bench, students know to approach them with an invitation to play. Special thank you to Steve Lechner (Lower Division Science) for building the buddy bench from scratch and our new students for lending their “hands” for the decorations!

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Ark Collage

Schechter Ark Builders

Thank you to members of the Class of 2018 (currently in 9th grade) who last year designed and created beautiful new doors (including 3D leaves!) for the aron (ark) in our Beit Tefilah. The doors were installed this fall and are accompanied by a plaque with the signatures of the participating students. Middle School students gathered to recite a bracha (blessing) to acknowledge the significance of this moment. This project was part of a chug (elective) led by Head of School Rebecca Lurie in partnership with Ben Greenberg of the Ark Builders group through Temple Israel in Natick.

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Parsha Paintings

Watercolors, colored pencils, and glitter! Each week in Parsha Paintings students explore some of the main themes of the parsha (weekly Torah portion) and then have the opportunity to bring the parsha to life! In these images students were delving into parshiyot Bereshit and Noach and responding to questions such as, what might have the creation of the world looked like? Where do we see righteousness in our world today? By bringing these parshiyot to life through art, students are able to connect with our Torah in a new, creative, and meaningful way.

At the end of the elective students will have a collection of fantastic images to share with friends and family, and to return to next year and see how their understanding of the parsha has changed.

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Hanukkah Rap 2018!

Students in Grades 1-3 are invited to participate in creating a song about Hanukkah in the form of a rap. Students will write the lyrics, come to the music room for a recording and have the song featured here on our blog. Lyrics either in Hebrew or English are welcome! See the finished pieces below…

This project allows students to:

  • Develop creativity in a new form
  • Learn about Jewish holidays through music and composition
  • Use technology during recording sessions
  • Build school community as we make one song with many verses, showing  the students’ thoughts about Hanukkah miracles and freedom

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