Jewish Learning At Akiva – April 2019

Tali Revah-Sibony, Judaic Studies Coordinator

This semester, our classes have embarked on many interesting new projects and initiatives in Judaic studies. In addition to our amazing Hebrew Language Week, below are just a few other examples of the projects and people that are enhancing our Judaic studies curriculum and inspiring our students every day.

 Tying science into Judaic Studies

Just before Passover in grade 5 we used a JSteam lesson that focused on bread, particularly leavened bread, and examines the role that it played in Yetziat Mitzrayim (Exodus from Egypt) and our celebration of Pesach. “What makes bread rise?” The students did an experiment and learned the science of bread making. This led to an investigation of when different types of breads first appeared in history, and the revelation that leavened bread was first found in Egypt! Using archaeological evidence and Biblical texts, students analyzed why leavened bread was important to the Egyptians, and why its antithesis, matzah, became such an important part of the Pesach experience in Egypt and in our celebration of Pesach today.

Improving Hebrew Reading Skills

Our grades1-3 have been working closely on improving our students’ reading skills. Teachers are screening the students reading accuracy and fluency with a program called MaDYK which is a universal screening assessment of Hebrew reading skills that enables educators to simply and easily monitor and develop a child’s Hebrew reading progress.

Recognizing our Shinshinim

Akiva Shinshinim

Shinshinim is a play on the Hebrew words, Shnat Sheirut, meaning “year of service”. We are blessed this year with our two shinshinim, Elchanan and Tamar, who postponed their army service to spend a full year with us. Every holiday and every day, they interact with our students with enthusiasm and love while making meaningful connections to Judaic studies, Eretz Israel and the Hebrew Language. Yeshar Koach Elchanan and Tamar!

Wishing everyone a chag kasher v’same’ach!