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Upper School Corner - Mrs. Yiska Berkowitz

Wednesday, 23 November, 2016 - 12:57 pm

Hello, my name is Yiska Berkowitz and I teach Jewish History and Yahadus to the Middle School Girls and Jewish History to the Middle School Boys.

In Yahadus, we delved into all of the holidays of Tishrei, as well as the month of Elul and The Fast of Gedaliah.  We reviewed the basics and learned new insights and meanings behind the laws and customs.  I hope your children shared some of the information with you over the holidays!

After Thanksgiving break, I will be doing a unit on The Calendar.  The students will learn why some months have one day of Rosh Chodesh, and others have two, and they will also become more familiar with the dates and events on the Jewish Calendar.

In Jewish History, we picked up right where we left off last June.  The incoming 6th Graders weren't with us last year, but they transitioned into the class nicely.

We are studying the 1700-1900 period.  We learned about the birth of Chassidism, and about Jewry in Eastern Europe at the time.
Then, we moved into the period of the Enlightenment led by Moses Mendelssohn.

The students learn the material by teacher-led classes, partner learning, summary writing, biography organizers, question sheets and more.  In the past quarter we were getting our feet wet and I wanted to focus on covering material despite breaks for holidays. This quarter, we will definitely have an exciting and challenging project.

When I asked the students what the word "Enlightenment" means to them, one boy raised his hand and answered, "Inspiration."  This answer was deep and touching as each and every student truly is.  "Inspiration" is what I aspire to give to the students every time I see them.
In class, students earn individual points as well as class points.  They are really looking forward to cashing in some class points for some exciting rewards.

Wishing you and your a beautiful vacation and Shabbat Shalom,

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