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To understand direct and indirect interactions in the Great Lakes ecosystem, Habonim students (grades 6-7) took on the roles of populations of organisms like yellow perch and great blue herons to form a connected food web from different food chains. Starting with producers like algae, students tossed yarn to consumers up the food chain until they had created a massive web of yarn. They were able to see how a change in one population of organisms affects all populations in the ecosystem when they felt the yarn go slack after the yellow perch dropped the yarn.
Gesher (grades 4-5) and Rimonim (grades 2-3) classes took part in some multicultural learning when Judy Poltorak, the Gesher class aide, did an interactive presentation about Lei Day, a Hawaiian holiday which takes place on May 1st every year. The holiday is one to share in the friendly custom of giving lei and to celebrate the multi-ethnic culture of the Hawaiian Islands. Judy brought lei and various Polynesian indigenous items for the students to wear and make music with. Students and teachers alike danced hula with Judy's guidance. It was a lovely opportunity for Schechter students to experience another culture and broaden their horizons. Todah rabah, Judy!
Did you know that Schechter has been composting food scraps since 2015? In keeping with our core values, Schechter students, faculty, and especially Food Services Coordinator Danielle Weiss have been recycling and composting to help keep landfill waste to a minimum and protect our earth. Recently, we received statistics calculating Schechter's contribution to reducing the landfill waste. Check it out!
Last month, the Gesher class (grades 4-5) went to the State Capitol to tour the Connecticut State Capitol Building, the Legislative Building, and the Museum of Connecticut History. The trip was the culmination of their unit on the American Revolution and the subsequent creation of the three branches of government, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. At the start of the tour, the students were introduced to Representative Jillian Gilchrest and Senator Derek Slap. The group met in one of the committee rooms where legislators debate issues before they are sent on to the Senate or House. Gesher students were encouraged to ask questions about this process or state government in general. After going through the underground tunnel connecting the Legislative Building to the Capitol, the students learned some Capitol history and saw statues of famous Connecticut heroes/heroines. When they toured the House of Representatives chamber, more than one student mentioned that they "remember this from iCivics" (an educational game they play in the morning), drawing fantastic connections between their knowledge from class and their in-person experiences at the Capitol.