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Sh’kedim (EC3-4) has a big week planned for Tu B'shvat! On Wednesday, each child planted lavender seeds in small pots. These pots will remain in the Science Center of the Sh’kedim classroom so that each student will care for, water, and document the growth of his/her own plant. They created almond blossoms using twigs and pink tissue paper, then discussed the connections that this species of tree has with Israel. Students will learn the parts of a tree, including roots, trunk, leaves, etc. in both English and Hebrew and they learned that a person /scientist who studies trees is called a Dendrologist! On Thursday, students baked a "birthday cake" for the trees and went outside to sing in Hebrew to all the trees in nature… a perfect activity for both celebrating Tu B’Shvat and practicing Covid safety!
Middle School focused on environmental issues during their Tu B’Shvat study. Bogrim (grade 8) saw an environmentally-themed video from Kibbutz Ketura and read articles on developing solar power in the Arava. Habonim (grades 6-7) studied the concept of triage, or the allocation of scarce resources, and analyzed its connection to the debate around GMO foods.
The T’marim students (EC3-4) have been hard at work celebrating Tu B’shvat. Students drew still life pictures using evergreens on the school property as their inspiration. They became treasure hunters, finding nature’s many treasures including evergreen branches in order to make sensory bottles. Students made almond trees and planted lavender plants. They even got their taste buds involved in celebrating, tasting four of the sevens species and graphing their favorite. Lastly, the students wrote a class blessing for the trees and read it to their favorite tree located in their outdoor classroom.
Parparim students (grades K-1) made fruit salad and ate it during snack. They planted parsley seeds that they plan to use in their class Passover seder. Students made small trees and "planted" them in cities in Israel by placing these decorated trees on the large map of Israel in the front of the building.
The Dubonim class (EC2) spent all week learning about Tu B’shvat! They read many stories, including Sammy Spider’s First Tu B’Shevat and Dear Tree; they sang songs including “Trees are Blowing in the Wind,” “The Green Grass Grows all Around,” and “If I Were a Tree.” The children developed fine motor skills by making beautiful almond tree pictures, rolling tissue paper into balls and then glueing those onto the tree. They added to their Tree Journals, this time creating their “Winter” tree page by ripping brown paper strips, then glueing them down for the trunks and branches, and dotting white paint for the snow with a pencil eraser. They planted sunflowers to bring a touch of springtime to our classroom, and the class is purchasing a tree that will be planted in their name in Israel.
The most exciting part for Dubonim was having a Tu B’shvat Seder on Thursday with different fruits and juices that grow on trees! Each child poured some grape juice and some white grape juice to make two mixed juices, giving everyone 4 (small) cups of juice to represent the seasons. The children LOVED being scientists and doing this! The fruits that were the biggest hits among the two-year-olds were apples, bananas, dates, kiwi, and avocado.
Rimonim students (grades 2-3) planted parsley for Passover, baked flower-shaped cookies, and learned how important it is to keep this world in a good shape.
Gesher students (grades 4-5) read and watched a video about different types of trees in Israel. Each student chose a tree that has similar characteristics to themselves and then drew that tree.
For pictures of all the Tu B’shvat action, click HERE.
Schechter recently partnered with PJ Library to offer the community’s youngest learners a multi-sensory Tu B’shvat experience delivered right to their door! We took Schechter’s Reggio cafe, which is geared for children under four, on the road. Children had the opportunity to shape trees out of playdough, dance to the folk song “Taadik K’tamar,” create artistic trees made from ripped tissue paper, have a fruit taste test, and learn Hebrew vocabulary associated with the spring. Every family received a fantastic planting kit complete with a clay pot, organic potting soil, and flower seeds… they will all be able to enjoy these festive flowers at their Passover table! Click HERE for photos and stay tuned for our next Shalom Reggio event coming for Passover!