BJEP BLOG: The Very Latest from BJEP Teachers
- Reflection on Teaching Seventh Grade at BJEP
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- 7th Graders Participate in Commemoration of Holocaust.
- Grade 3 Teacher on Passover
- Happy Purim!!
- Library is more than just Books at BJEP
- Grade 4 Havdalah at BJEP
- BJEP Performed “Fiddler on the Roof”
- Fifth Graders Celebrate Israel in Interactive Program
- Sixth Graders Tie Fringes on Home-Made Tallits (prayer shawls)
- Fourth Graders Decorate Own Personal Siddur
- Grade 3 Teacher Reflects on Jewish Education and BJEP
- Second Grader Teacher on the Grade 2 Family Program
- First Graders Excited about Tzedakah
- September 2012 – Grade 6 Teacher on Prayer Shawl Making
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Grade 4 Hebrew Teacher, Eliana Light, reflects on Grade 4 Havdalah.
By admin | Published: February 16, 2012
The amazing thing about Jewish ritual is, after 2000 years of development and practice, after doing the same thing year after year, and week after week, there is still new meaning to be found. The ritual of Havdalah is one that I have loved ever since I was a kid: the sights, the smells, the songs. But this past Saturday night, as I stood in a circle with the students of the fourth grade class, I experienced a different Havdalah than I ever have. These kids had spent over a month learning, talking about, and immersing themselves in a ritual that they did not know before. We discussed the concept of “separation,” and how that brings holiness into our lives. We learned about the different ritual objects– the kiddush cup for wine, the braided candle, and the spices– and the prayers we say over each. And we learned how to sing the beautiful Debbie Friedman tune, that perfectly conveys the beauty of Shabbat, the melancholy of leaving it, and the hope of a week to come. After an opening niggun (wordless melody) taught by Jon, our music teacher, and some explanation by the teachers and a great story from Dena, the kids raised their voices in the words of Havdalah. With the lights off and the candles glowing, the joy in doing something new and well was reflected in their faces. At the end of the night, they took home two things that will hopefully become a part of their lives; a siddur that their parents decorated, and a Havdalah kit filled with homemade ritual items. My prayer is that the families of the 4th graders find joy and comfort in these items, and that they continue to strengthen their love of Judaism for years to come.