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Archive for January, 2011

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Children in Jerusalem.

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In response to a question on Imamother: Do mothers of many children have more nachas?

Mothers of many children have more.

More crying, and more giggling. 

More complaining, and more warm sleepy bodies curled up against you for a bedtime story.

More shouting, and more whimsical childhood secrets whispered ticklishly in your ear.

More sibling rivalry, and more siblings performing original plays for Mommy on a Shabbos afternoon.

More nights you stay awake balancing a baby on each hip, dancing them to sleep as music plays, bleary eyed while you damage your feet so permanently that you will have to wear custom insoles for the rest of your life. And more nights in your life that you held close those you love most and danced.

There are more teenagers to gang up in protest against your ridiculous rules. And more teenagers to arrive home on the day of your own mother’s yahrtzeit, and when you protest tearfully that they didn’t have to come, they say we’re with you. Mommy, we’re with you.

So much more mess, but when you stack it all up before your Night of Freedom, it becomes a pile of so many first grade copies of Chumash Bereishis, each child an opportunity to begin anew, so many priceless works of art that reinvent the artist.

Stretching and Reaching

Vegetation along the Nile. You can see the riv...

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In Parshas Shemos, we learned all about baby Moshe being placed by his mother Yocheved in a waterproof ¬†basket that would keep him safe in the Nile River. We viewed images of moses baskets but the ones we saw didn’t look as safe as the one the Torah explains Moshe’s was.

Moshe’s older sister Miriam hid among the tall reeds and waited to see what would happen to her baby brother. She was worried when she saw Princess Batya approaching. Batya was the daughter of mean King Pharoh! She was at the river to take a bath, because in that time people did not have bathtubs in their homes – instead, they washed in the water of the river.

Batya heard a baby crying. She had a kind heart and cared about the baby. She sent her helpers to get the basket but they didn’t want to. So even though the basket was too far away for her to reach, Batya stretched out her arm to get it. Hashem saw how hard Batya was trying to help and do a mitzva, so Hashem made her able to reach the baby.

The baby refused to be fed by all the Egyptian women, because the baby Moshe would grow up to talk to Hashem and be given the Torah and teach it to all the Jews. His neshama was holy.

Miriam was worried and may have felt embarrassed, but she knew that she should be brave to do a mitzva. She stood up and didn’t hide anymore. Miriam asked Princess Batya if Miriam should go find a Jewish woman to feed the crying baby. Batya said yes.

Who do you think Miriam brought to take care of Moshe? His real mother, Yov cheved! yocheved was so happy to take care of her baby, but she didn’t tell anyone that she was his real mother.

Moshe grew up with Princess Batya and her father King Pharoh in the palace. When he grew older, he would go out and help the Jews with their hard work. He cared about their pain and tried to help them as much as he could.

Story Time: In Labels for Laibel, the boys realize that they feel very unhappy not sharing their toys and books or anything at all. then their mother and father label their things, to show the boys how it feels when people don’t share.

A student suggested that Morah Elana hold the pages up to the camera to show the pictures and this worked well! The same student taught Morah Elana what to do to reply to sticky notes. Even students can teach teachers! We can learn from everyone.

At the end the boys took off all the labels they had put on. Then they felt happy because they had made shalom. Hashem wants us to share and care for one another.

Students drew pictures about sharing.

In Aleph Beis Class, we practiced patach and kamatz sounds with one, and then two, letter combinations. Writing of two syllable words with patach and kamatz. We are progressing nicely!

In Parshas Vaeira, we learned all about the first seven makos, and how they were mida keneged mida. They were punishments that made sense because of the things the Egyptians did to the Jews.

When we make promises we should remember what we said and do it, not like Pharoh who always changed his mind and broke his promises.