- Posted by Jamie Lichtenstein
- On February 12, 2016
- 0 Comments
The 6th graders will begin translating their B’nei Mitzvah parashah (portion) after February vacation. We hope that each child will read their own English translation of their verses at their Bar or Bat Mitzvah. In addition to translation, each student will have an opportunity to think deeply about their parshah and approach it from 4 reading orientations: Literary Criticism, Contextualization, Parshanut, and Personalization. You will hear more about these orientations at our family education program on Sunday, February 28. The project will have options so each child can focus on what is most meaningful to him or herself.
Recently, we have been working on Hebrew #Skillz that will help with their Torah translation skills. We have done some Hebrew “scavenger hunts” to practice these skills in class.
This past week I introduced an app called Flashcards on the class set of iPads to practice the vocabulary we have learned and used. The kids loved it! Many of them want to download the app so they can practice at home.
You can find the app on the Apple or Android appstores. Search on Flashcards by NKO (Flashcards is all one word). Once you have installed the app, here are instructions to import our class vocabulary lists.
- Click on My Decks
- In the upper right corner of the app click on the +.
- Choose Import from Quizlet.
- Click on by author above the search bar.
- Type jamie561 in the search bar.
- The 4 sets you want each start with #Skillz
- Click on the deck you want and then click on Add Deck in the upper right corner.
- Repeat for #Skillz1, #Skillz2, #Skillz3, and #Skillz4.
The Flashcard app includes several free options and games. If your 6th grader doesn’t have access to a smart phone or tablet, you can also access the vocabulary lists through the Quizlet website. Quizlet has a memory game that is good practice as well.
To play, pick a deck in MyDecks. I suggest starting with Review or Match. In Review, you can click on a word and it will read it out loud. I don’t know how to add the vowels, but generally the app reads everything correctly. Some of the 1-letter prefixes are read with the name of the letter instead of the sound.
Battle is also a free game and lets 2 kids compete to get the most correct and has been really popular in class. If you are in a situation with a friend from class and they are playing on their phones anyway, perhaps you can suggest a vocabulary battle.
Some of the other games include a free trial and then require an in-app purchase to unlock. You can decide as a family whether they are fun enough to justify the purchase. Among the paid games, Flappy is really popular with the kids and requires that they fly the bird through the Hebrew and the correct English translation.
We are currently studying the history of the Reform movement. An important institution in the history of the Reform Movement is Temple Israel. I know we have several families in the class who grew up at Temple Israel. I am putting together a panel on the history of Temple Israel for the 6th graders. If you or a grandparent grew up at Temple Israel, I am hoping you will participate in sharing personal stories of growing up at TI. Please be in touch if you would be willing to participate in our panel.
In class we have also been working on chanting and reading prayers they will chant at their B’nei Mitzvah. The hope is to take some of the pressure off how much they have to learn with their tutors so the tutors can spend the bulk of their time working on the Torah and Haftarah portions. The kids are working at their own pace through the prayers and we check in 1:1 periodically so they can be “checked-off” and move on to the next prayer. Each 6th grader knows which prayer they are working on, but feel free to check with me if you are unsure. They should be practicing 10 minutes/day though at this point in the year if they want to substitute 5 minutes of vocabulary practice with the Flashcards app for 5 of their minutes of chanting practice, that is fine with me. Several parents have asked that I reshare the list of prayers they are learning and links to download the audio and pdf files for practice. If you click on the name of the prayer, it will take you to a dropbox folder where you can download the files. These prayers we learn in class are in a different order than the tutors use. If your child has begun tutoring, please use the recordings and order of prayers their tutors or Cantor Einhorn assigns.
- Avot V’Imahot
- Torah Blessings
- Haftarah Blessings
- Torah Liturgy
Thanks for all your on-going support. If you have questions about Hebrew homework or anything else we are doing in class, please feel free to email me directly or comment here.