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Hadas Heyman 

Learning With The Students

My favorite holiday as a child was always Purim. The reason I loved this holiday so much was the big carnival we had every year at my school that was run by students and the crazy costumes we were allowed to wear (Esther’s second name can be another reason). As a teacher, I also favor this holiday but for different reasons. I definitely love the fact that we can dress up every year on Purim. I also like the fact that everyone joins the Purim spirit (Jewish or not). I enjoy…

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Hadas Heyman 

Providing Opportunities to Speak in Hebrew

How do I provide more opportunities for my students to speak Hebrew inside and outside the classroom? As a Hebrew language teacher, I’ve always asked myself this question over and over again. My students spend a short amount of time in my class every day, and this time is so precious and valuable. Every second should be planned effectively. My students know that wasting time is a big pet peeve of mine. There is time to write, read, use technology tools to enhance students’ learning, ask questions, discuss, work in…

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Hadas Heyman 

Teaching Hebrew through “Rotations” in First Grade

    The best part of my job this year is to step into some of the classrooms and observe learning in a non-judgmental way. As teachers, we focus on our work inside our classrooms and hardly ever find the time to step out and look around us. We can learn so much from each other and share what we see with the rest of our colleagues. One of the things that I had a chance to observe this year was our first graders working in a station rotation model….

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Alexis Soffler Andrea Hernandez Hadas Heyman Jessie Nathans Kim Sherk 

Professional Blogging: Our Reflections

Over the past five-ish months, a small cohort of teachers and administrators have been coached by Andrea Hernandez from EdJewCon to grow as reflective practitioners through the vehicle of blogging. As we are thinking about how to share our learning with other staff to change the purpose of blogging here at CESJDS, we took some time to reflect on our learning and outline it in presentation form to share with the community. Please reach out to us with questions, comments, and inspiration for additional blog posts. What would you like…

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Alexis Soffler Andrea Hernandez Hadas Heyman Jessie Nathans Kim Sherk 

Looking Through a Lens: Visual Bingo

We started with a blank visual bingo template (thanks Darren Kuropatwa for sharing). We brainstormed keywords, using the 5 characteristics from The Adaptable Mind (curiosity, creativity, initiative, multi-disciplinary thinking and empathy) as broad headings. Armed with our bingo boards, we set off to discover and photograph interpretations of our keywords. Afterwards, we reflected on the process as well as our individual products and discussed different applications of this type of activity. Jessie’s collage: Alexis’s Collage: Kim’s Collage: Hadas’s Collages (she made two): Andrea’s Collage:  

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Hadas Heyman 

Taking the Time to be Thankful

November is the month to think about all the things that we should be thankful for. We should probably take the time to do it more often than once a year, but November is usually the best time to do it since Thanksgiving is a special holiday for everyone in America. At JDS, we take the time to discuss the Middah of the Month in both Judaic and General Studies. During our morning meeting, I asked the students to think about the things they are thankful for and took pictures…

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Hadas Heyman 

Taking First Steps in Blogging

This week I started to teach my students about blogging. I told my students about my journey as a first time blogger with my JDS cohort. I participated in a workshop with Andrea Hernandez, the co-director of edJEWcon. During my last coaching session with Andrea, we discussed the idea of sharing my posts on the Charles E. Smith blog at edJEWcon as a way of introducing blogging to my students. I was contemplating the idea for a couple of weeks and decided to give it a try after our recent workshop with Andrea….

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Hadas Heyman 

Teaching about the Holidays of Tishrey

This year the Jewish holidays started at the end of September, which gave us all (Judaic Teachers) an opportunity to be calmer and more relaxed during the first week of school. We all knew that we had enough time to teach about the symbols, traditions, costumes and mitzvot of the high holidays. What a great way to start the new school year! At Charles E. Smith JDS, we like to use every opportunity we have to take our students on a special learning journey. In 3rd grade we did our best to experience…

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Hadas Heyman 

Hebrew at the Center

Last year we started our partnership with Hebrew at the Center. Our goal as a school was to reassess what we did in the past and based on that data, reevaluate our teaching strategies and make sure that we teach Hebrew effectively.  We want our students to be able to speak Hebrew and be proficient in the language. According to the “Proficiency” approach, being proficient in a language means that one is able to converse and be understood  with a native speaker that claims to have a high-school degree. Teaching…

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Hadas Heyman 

Teachers are life-long learners, but we don’t know it all

When I attended elementary school as a child, we were taught so many things, mainly by our teachers. The teacher held all the knowledge and in order to seek more information, I had to take a trip to the local library and search for it.  Teaching has evolved in many ways since I attended elementary school. The changes affected teachers, students, parents and everyone involved in the community. Image taken from: https://www.tjed.org/about-tjed/7-keys/ With the advances in technology, people today are both learning and being taught in new ways. Teachers must be…

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