This was an exciting week- we finished reading all of Vayishlach, keep growing our Hebrew Word Wall, and have begun preparing for our Torah service on 11/18. Also, so many students have mastered the first tefilah they chose to work on this year!
In the last section of Vayishlach, learners reflected on some important ideas and questions:
- Yaakov got the name Yisrael from God, Rachel dies, Yitzhak dies, Esav leaves.
- What happens to all of the people? [Esav’s descendents]
- Why does [Yaakov] pour oil on the pillar? Was oil rare?
- It was an offering.
- He didn’t burn it.
- No oil ever, very rare.
- He only had access to what was around.
- Why did Esaav leave if he was the first one there?
- Maybe he wanted space for himself, that’s why he got there first. He left when everyone else left to still have space.
- Maybe he wanted to give space to others. Something we can add to our Brit.
- Why did he get the name Yisrael twice?
After completing Vayishlach, we reflected on the entire parsha in the classroom surrounded by all of our thoughts, reflections and questions from studying 3 and a half chapters of it. Our learners took pride in noticing all of the time and effort they put into studying this parsha all laid out upon the walls of our classroom.
Everyone chose a section of verses they would like to read for the Torah service based on what section of the text felt important or meaningful to them, and everyone has already made amazing progress getting comfortable reading their sections in just two days! These learners have incredible skills for accessing and understanding Torah.
Continuing our Rosh Pinah project about tefillah, last week we learned about the 5 types of tefilot and did a tefillah hunt through familiar tefillot in the siddur to try out our new knowledge, and reflected on any themes we could see among the tefillot the class really enjoys to daven the most. We also learned about the 7 sections of the service by making educated guesses about what they were, and then reading and putting into order the 7 sections. We will continue to reflect on which sections of the service are most meaningful to us, to lead us unto a conversation about spirituality before moving into independent projects all about tefillah.
Looking forward to working toward our November 18th Torah service and seeing all the ways these learners grow in the next month.