April 2014/Nisan 5774 Volume 1

Student Council

A word from Co-Presidents Bailee Rousso and Sam Schetritt:

Dear Middle School,

On behalf of the whole Student Council, we would like to thank everyone who participated in Pi Day. It was a huge success and we could not have had the success that we had without you. The next Bagel Tuesday is on April 29th. We are looking forward to the Middle School Chicago trip on May 5th. Have a great Pesach and Spring Break.

Thank You,

Your Co-Presidents

Special Occasion: Pesach Model Seder

This past Thursday, April 10th, our Hebrew and Judaics teachers, Morah Miri, Morah Anat, and Morah Batsheva, along with Rabbi Farber, hosted a wonderful Passover Model Seder with our Middle School. All students had a great time singing and enjoyed sharing a meal while the event was being live-streamed. Students read aloud in Hebrew and in English from the Haggadah beautifully. We all had a blast finding the afikoman at the end of the main course. We thank our Hebrew and Judaics teachers for putting together a fantastic event and we are already looking forward to participating in next year's Model Seder.

Upcoming Events

  • Pesach
  • Middle School Trip to Chicago
  • Cultural Day
  • Final Exams

Middle School Classes

Language Arts with Dr. Beck

6th, 7th, and 8th Grade Language Arts Class

All three of our Middle School Language Arts classes recently finished reading their holocaust-themed novels. In 6th grade, we time-traveled with Hannah in The Devil’s Arithmetic, and we learned about the importance of remembering the past and gaining wisdom from it. In 7th grade, we read about the true-life story of Helmuth Hubener, a German teenage boy who stood up against the Nazis and inspired The Boy Who Dared. Our 8th grade students read Eli Weisel’s gripping tale, Night, which details his experience with his father in the Nazi German concentration camps at Auschwitz and Buchenwald in 1944–1945. While reading these novels and completing activities related to them, we have also been building our vocabulary skills with our Vocabulary Workshop workbooks and we have been keeping up with our weekly Reading Plus activities. We are already looking forward to reading our final novels of the school year, which are due Friday, May 2nd.

Judaics with Morah Batsheva

6th Grade Judaics Class

This month students will be exploring Bamidbar Chapter 6, Parashat Naso. We will discuss how the Torah distinguishes between two groups of Levites: the Kohanim and the Levi’im; the laws regarding Nazirites and the meaning and ritual of Birkat Hakohanim. In addition to Torah study, the students will be learning about the Holiday of Passover from the Torah and from the Mishnah. We will be focused on the Seder ritual, using the actual Haggadah, and reinforcing our Seder skills. We had our Model Seder in school and are very excited about this experience.

7th and 8th Grade Judaics Class

This month students will analyze the cycles of Israelite behavior during the time of the judges. Each cycle contains a clear sequence of repeated events surrounding the stories of the six major judges. In the month of April, the students will be focused on two judges: Othniel Ben Kenaz from the tribe of Judah and Ehud Ben Gerah from the tribe of Benjamin. In addition to our Bible study we will be focused onPassover’s mitzvot from the Torah and from the Mishnah as well as the Seder ritual from the Haggadah. We will have our Model Seder in school and we are very excited about this experience.

Math with Mr. Roberts

Math Algebra I

Algebra I is in the process of learning about Radicals, Quadratics and the Quadratic Formula to solve equations. Our students are progressing wonderfully in a flipped classroom-style environment as we use the online program of MathXL for assignments and tests, and we are almost finished with the course requirements for Algebra I.

Math Algebra II

Algebra II is working on Radical functions and their use. We have a few more concepts to complete in Algebra II before the semester is over. We will be learning about Logarithms and Matrices to finish off the semester. Students are all understanding the subject at hand and are using technology and MathXL for homework, quizzes, and tests.

Math with Ms. Cox

6th Grade Math

Students have been working with fractions and using them in equations. When we return from break they will continue to work with decimals and begin using proportions to solve equations in our Pre-Algebra course.

Hebrew with Morah Anat

Middle School Advanced Hebrew Class

This month, as our beautiful spring holiday is fast approaching, our MS students will be analyzing the concepts of Freedom and Slavery. They will be able to explain the three types of freedom (physical, spiritual and national), and give examples of each type. Students will review several stories about slavery, write about them, and present them in class, while making suggestions of what we can do today in order to prevent this type of slavery from recurring. Our students will also write a letter to Eliyahu Hanavi, using future tense, asking him to come and do “Tikkun Olam” ( i.e. world repair) in our world.

Happy Passover!

חג פסח שמח וכשר

Hebrew with Morah Miri

Middle School Intermediate Hebrew Class

The happiness of spring brings us one of the "shlosha regaleem,” the Three Pilgrimage Festivals of the Torah (Pesach, Shavoutand Sukkot). We have been learning that on Passover we have an order for everything, and this is why we call our meals on the first two nights of Pesach the “Seder” - order. Being the oldest in the school, the Passover story has a deeper meaning to our Middle School students. Does slavery only mean slaves in Egypt, or can we relate the story to ideas of slavery and freedom today? Students will discuss how people are addicted to various devices, such as iPads, computers, and phones, and how this is a type of slavery. We need to detach ourselves from these addictions and let ourselves be free to relate to, and enjoy our surroundings. As an activity in class students will be divided into pairs and will act out the idea of enslavement, and how teamwork can help to overcome such obstacles.

Happy Passover!

Morah Miri

Mandarin with Mrs. Hu

Middle School Mandarin Class

Students will learn and identify the names of different animals this month. Vocabulary will be learned through flash cards, singing, reading, quiz and writing about a pet they like. Students will communicate with the teacher where they would like to have dinner. Students will continue to learn about Chinese culture through the 'Hello China' video series. We will have activity for Passover .

Spanish with Mrs. Cintia

6th Grade Spanish Class

Students have finished learning about classes, daily schedules, and classroom objects, asking and telling time, saying what you have – “tener” and what you have to do – “tener que”, saying where things are located and where they are going, asking questions by conjugating the verb before the subject, and talking about feelings and emotions using the verbs “estar” and “ir”. The week after we come back from the Passover break, they will be taking the Unit’s Test.

The Spanish-speaking students just finished learning about foods and beverages, saying which foods they do and don’t like, talking about family, asking and telling ages, giving dates, expressing possession by using “de” and possessive adjectives, making comparisons, using interrogative words to ask questions, conjugating regular verbs with “er” and “ir” endings, using the verb “hacer”. The week after the Passover break, they will be taking the Unit’s Test.

7th and 8th Grade Spanish Class

Students have finished learning about rooms in a house and household items, indicating the order of things by using ordinal numbers, describing people and locations using “ser” and “estar”, planning a party, talking about chores and responsibilities by using irregular verbs such as “dar, decir, salir, sacar.” The week after the Passover break, they will be learning affirmative commands to tell someone what to do.

Social Studies with Mr. Roberts

7th and 8th Grade Social Studies

We have completed the 1920's and are moving into the 1930's and the Great Depression. We will be discussing The New Deal and then move right into World War II. 7th and 8th grade is moving forward productively and surely at a steady pace in the Social Studies curriculum.

Social Studies with Mrs. Cox

6th Grade Social Studies Class

In sixth grade World History, we just wrapped up the chapter on ancient China and when we return from break we will be beginning our unit on ancient Greece. Students will be studying the history of Greece, including events such as the Trojan War and the emergence of City-States. They will also be studying the beginnings of democracy, philosophy and completing projects on the Greek Gods.

Science with Mrs. Buchholz

6th Grade Life Science Class

Students have designed, constructed, and identified different models relating to The Characteristics of Cells, Chemistry of Life, Cell Structure and Function, Levels of Cellular Organization, Homeostasis and Cell Processes, and Photosynthesis and Cellular Respiration this past month in science class.

7th and 8th Earth and Space Science Class

Students have designed, constructed, and identified different models relating to the: Earth's Water, Water and Its Properties, the Water Cycle, Surface Water and Groundwater, Oceanography, Earth's Oceans and the Ocean Floor and Ocean Waves, and Ocean Currents.

Exploratorium with Mrs. Buchholz

Middle School Exploratorium Class

Middle School Students have been offered a rich science experience that integrates core content areas with technology and engineering. This month students will have the opportunity to explore activities that include but not limited to discovering how wind can create electricity. Operate an anemometer and experiment with thermometers and how color affects temperature. Experiment with converting energy. Change mechanical energy into electrical energy and store energy.

P.E. with Coach Andy

Middle School P.E. Class

We have been enjoying another incredible year at the JCC with our Sinai counterparts. From tennis to swimming to general fitness, the JCC has provided us with the space and tools necessary to explore Physical Education in many diverse, challenging ways. After we return from break, we are looking forward to continuing to enjoy our time at the JCC. Remember to pack cold water bottles as it is getting to the hotter months of the year!
Click Here For A Funny Passover 'Let it Go' Parody

We found this Passover/'Let It Go' Parody online and we thought you would enjoy it! Hag Sameach!

Co-Editors: Dianne Strauss (6) & Shaun Rousso (6)