7/20 Class Notes

Respectful challenge

7/7 Class Notes

Good afternoon message. Jewish text: "a person who welcomes a friend with a smile is as one giving him or her all the finest gifts in the world" -Avot D'Rabbi Natan, 13:4. How could teaching this Jewish text help you create a welcoming classroom? Where might you place this text?
Celebrations: You can make them up (keep it structured and short). Watermelon: Take a huge slurp of watermelon, and spit out 3 seeds. Peace Out: Beat on chest twice and make a peace sign and say "Peace Out",
Morning Meeting:

  • ideas: choose a few people each day to share, use a timer (1 min each)

Beit Midrash in the classroom

  • used to teach Jewish Values
  • the difference between paired learning and hevruta: pairs could split the work, work next to one another, each work individually. Paired work can hold to the same standards as hevruta.
  • hevruta when studying Jewish text, not about general studies. Something that Jews do to study text. Could be about prayer, Jewish texts, values
  • Hevruta is studying in a pair over a certain period of time, where they learn and grow and challenge one another.
Why use hevruta?
  • learn in a Jewish way - historically Jewish
  • positive surprises from havruta pairings
  • become familiar with one partner
  • social aspect of learning
  • students see the text through their own eyes
  • less frontal teaching, students are more invested and engaged in the learning
  • prefaced by cooperative learning in order to introduce the skills needed for havruta
What skills are needed?
  • Listen to other students
  • Read and understand text/comprehension
  • support and challenge
  • understand the assignment
What might make it hard to put kids in havruta?
  • gender issues
  • learning level and needs
  • physical space
  • relation to content
  • students who don't work well together
  • how much guidance/independence they will need
  • specific children clashing
  • uneven numbers/absent kids
Discuss ideas about what active means. Havruta practice lesson.
  • Hook: what does it mean to be active? an active talker? an active listener?
  • What does it mean to listen?
  • Good listening looks like... why?
  • good listening sounds like...
  • good listening feels like...
  • active listening means...
Fill out active listening chart
Go over "ways to start a task with havruta"
Take and print pictures of students in havruta, and label how they are actively listening

6/29 Class Notes

Assignment for today: Jewish Classroom Vision (pre-assessment)
Rough draft for Jewish Ritual
Lesson for She'hehiyanu - for the first day of school?
Lio Lionni - Tilly and the Wall book

6/25 Reading

Life in a Crowded Place

Chapter 1 Ceremony, Ritual and Rite

Ceremony: Marking the transition between activities, between daily life and classroom life.
  • Opening the day: 15 minutes of silent writing time, morning meeting where students get to connect to one another, pledge + song + prayer
  • Example: (1) Good morning - Be prepared: paper + pencil, literature book, writers notebook; (2) Getting ready - class jobs; (3) Morning announcements - kids tell about their lives, what's coming up; (4) Acknowledgements and appreciation - students thank people at home and in class and say why
  • During the day: song or stretching to transition between subjects
  • Ending the day: although activity usually drops when the bell rings, there can be read aloud at the end of the day, songs, etc
Ritual: taking up a position in a circle, making pledges, lighting candles, prayers
  • a teacher sits in her rocking chair with a book and lights a candle as a ritual for reading time
  • very specific set of behaviors, such as standing for the national anthem
  • has a centering affect, brings students/community together by all participating in the ritual
  • individual rituals vs. community rituals
Rite: marking a certain passing of time or achievement with a certain celebration or activity
  • transition, incorporation and separation
  • Transition: threshold and competency rites
  • Threshold rite: entering and leaving a classroom, lining up to leave, entering a classroom properly
  • Competence rite: passing from one stage to another (going up a grade)

Chapter 2 Celebration

  • humans are celebratory in nature
  • celebrations include special day, spur-of-the-moment, achievement, getting older
  • guidelines to think about: celebrations shouldn't occur too often that it becomes flat.
  • celebrations should be separate, and should be placed carefully in order to separate it out from daily goings on.