September 13

The Bracha

Grade 6 started the process of understanding the concept of Brachot. We began by identifying what needs a Bracha. Is it just food, travel, something new, a rainbow… Next week we will be looking at the actual text to figure out all the different categories of Brachot. For a fun activity, which will be their assessment, (similar to a Spelling Bee), we will have a Bracha Bee. We hope all of you will be able to join us for the Bracha Bee.

Shabbat Shalom.

September 6

6TH GRADE ASSIGNMENT TO SHARE WITH PARENTS

Today the students were introduced to the concept, the Torah is a living document.  We discussed this week Torah Portion פרשהת and how it is relevant in the modern world. Below are the discussion questions.  Hopefully, they will share with you what they learned today.

Parent Signature:

Parshat Hashavua: Shoftim

A.This weeks Parsha, we learned about:

1.

 

2.

 

3.

 

4.

 

5.

 

6.

 

B.The Parsha  relates to at least one of our North Stars and why:

1.

 

2.

 

To me, the most relevant part of the Parsha is________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________because_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

  1. Did you know the reason we blow Shofar everyday at school is because______________________________________________________________________________Personally, this is important to me because______________________________________________________________________________
  2. In Israel____________________________________________________________________________
September 4

ISRAEL LINKS

Text

https://www.timesofisrael.com/

Daily Israeli Newspaper

https://www.jpost.com

One of the oldest Israeli Daily Newspapers

https://www.israel21c.org/

ISRAEL21c is a non-partisan, nonprofit organization and the publisher of an English-language online news magazine recognized as the single most diverse and reliable source of news and information about 21st century Israel.

VIDEOS

https://www.youtube.com/user/ISRAEL21cdotcom

Local video perspectives about Israel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuxgEyMeaks7HS5gAw6Tt7w

Israel Daily TV

https://www.youtube.com/user/i24News

i24NEWS is the global news network bringing unfiltered, unbiased, global news from where it happens. With headquarters based in the Middle East, i24NEWS broadcasts worldwide from its studios in New York, Paris, Washington and Tel Aviv. In a single newsroom, over 250 journalists of 35 nationalities and faiths together, produce content (news, talk shows, news magazines) available on TV, web and mobile devices

 

September 4

WELCOME BACK – FIRST ASSIGNMENT

Today we discussed the idea of why and who. How do we personally connect to being a Jew and Why?

Please click this link https://www.aish.com/jl/l/ms/47139952.html?mobile=yes

Fill in your Hebrew Name,  and what time you were born (ask your parents).

For Friday, please turn in a Google Doc with the Hebrew date of when you were born and what happened on that day in History.

Extra Credit if you also get responses from other family members.

If you did not finish your in-class assignment on Israel please make sure you will be able to share it on Friday.

October 4

Grade 7 Homework Assignments-Rabbi Finkelstein

First assignment-questions on the opening sentences of Vayikra 19, see questions in MIddle School section of blog. Due Oct.5

Assignment #2- How does one show that he or she fears (holds their parents in awe)? How is fear different from respect? Why does the Torah mention in the same sentence about the fear of parents that one must observe the Shabbat? (Rashi) Do you agree or disagree with Rashi’s interpretation? Due Oct.12

Assignment #3- Vayikra 19-sentences 11- Why does the Torah warn us not to steal? How is this commandment different from the law against stealing mentioned in the Ten Commandments? (See Rashi)

Why is lying not acceptable by the Torah? How do you feel when someone lies to you? Is there any time that it would be acceptable to lie?

Assignment #4-(This is your TEST due November 5) If you were an employer, and you had several people working for you, what would you expect your employee to do for you? What would your employee expect from you, the employer.

How do the following sentences from the Torah help you in formulating your answer?

Leviticus 19:13-Do not defraud your friend and do not steal. Do not hold back paying your worker until the morning.

Deuteronomy (Devarim) 23: 25- If you are working in your friend’s vineyard, you may eat as many grapes as you want. But do not put any grapes in your knapsack.

Deuteronomy 24:14-15- Do not hold back somebody’s pay. Pay him his daily pay before the day ends. As he is poor, he will cry out to Hashem if he is not paid. You will be guilty of a sin.

Genesis (Bereshit) 31:10- You know I worked for your father with all of my strength. (Jacob tells Rachel and Leah that he worked for their father, Lavan, for twenty years with all of his efforts.

Feel free to check commentaries such as Rashi on these sentences to help you with your answers.

Assignment #5- Do not curse the deaf or place a stumbling block before the blind. What does the Torah mean by those statements? Vayikra19:14. What is the actual meaning of these statements in a modern day context? Think of stumbling block examples, e.g., false religious direction, vaccination crisis, misleading information, self-interest. What responsibility do we have to protect people from wrong, harmful information?

Assignment #6- Leviticus 19:17-18-Why is it wrong to hate someone in one’s heart? When is it necessary to tell somebody off, and when is it better to keep quiet? What is the proper way to tell somebody off, and what is the improper way? Why is it so difficult to tell somebody off?  Assignment due Monday, Nov.26. Feel free to use commentaries such as Rashi in formulating your answer. Reminder to access commentaries-Click on the sentence and commentaries will appear. Click on commentaries, and the list of commentaries will appear.

Assignment #7- Chanukah- Questions to research on Google-1. Why do we celebrate Chanukah eight days when the miracle of the oil lasted only seven days?

2. Why does the Mishna which mentions different historical events that happened in the  Second Temple period not mention Chanukah altogether, even though the rabbis of the time established it as a holiday?

3. Google the following: Megillat Taanit and Chanukah. How is Chanukah described there?

4. Why is the new candle always lit first?

5. How long should the candles remain lit during the week and on Friday night?

6. What can one not do with the Chanukah candles?

Assignment #8- Love your neighbour as yourself- what does this mean? What is hateful to you do not do to someone else. Why is this interpretation the key to the Torah according to HIllel, and why does he say the rest of the Torah is commentary? Why would Rabbi Akiva consider this to the most important principle of the Torah? Can somebody be religious without ‘loving his neighbour’? Is it enough for someone to simply ‘love his neighbour’ without observing anything else? (Source_ Vayikra, Leviticus 19:18) ( Due first week of December.)

Assignment #9-Leviticus  19:35-36-Business Ethics-What do we mean by the term, ‘business ethics’?What are some issues that come up in the business world which Jewish law should address? Think about the following: employer-employee relations which we have discussed, cheating, inferior products, false advertising, unfair competition,  price gouging. (Read the texts in the Torah, and then we will turn to the Shulchan Aruch to see some of the laws.)

Continuing on this topic we will look at the following: Torah’s discussion of honest weights, the Torah’s attitude toward one who does not ethically act in business.  Shulchan Aruch-choshen mishpat chapter 228, halacha 6

It is forbidden to cheat or deceive somebody in business. If the product has a defect, the seller must notify the buyer. It is forbidden to make an old product look new, and sell it as new.

It is permitted to distribute candies to children to entice them to buy from one’s store. The store owner can sell a product at a cheaper price than his competition.

Questions to answer: See if you can find three examples of false advertising in the media today, and show why they are false.

Is competition good for business? What happens if competition drives somebody out of business? Can you find examples of good and bad competition? Answers due before the break)

Assignment #10-Welcome back and let’s get to work. We are going to work in groups on the questions you had in the previous assignment dealing with issues concerning business ethics and Jewish law. Let us concentrate on competition and false advertising.

We will look at Leviticus 25, sentences 14 and 17 to learn about fraud in business and the use of hurtful and misleading language.

Quotations from Shulchan Aruch-1) Hurtful words are worse than fraud, as money made from fraud can be returned. Hurtful words cannot be taken back.

2) One should not ask a salesperson how much an item costs unless that person is actually interested in buying it.

3) Do not send somebody to a store which you know does not carry the item the person wants to buy.

4) Do not remind somebody of his past deeds.

5) It is wrong to call somebody by a nickname that hurts.

6) A seller must notify the buyer if there is a defect in the product.

7) It is permissible for a store owner to give out treats to entice customers. One may even lower the price to get customers.

Why would the following six words be considered hurtful words?

Stupid, lazy, spoiled, hypocrite,bored,selfish (Psychology Today)

How would these words violate the Torah’s rule not to say hurtful words to people?

Why should people not use the following phrases?

You look tired. You’ve lost a lot of weight. You always, You  never…You look great for your age.  Whatever you want. (Forbes)

How are these hurtful phrases?

Come up with three examples of words or phrases a person should never use in conversation, because they might be hurtful.

Discussion about concept of Shabbat- Sources in the Torah

Assignment #11-Shabbat- end of perek Aleph of Bereshit

Exodus, chapter 20-Zachor Ve shamor

Exodus, chapter 31 -Veshamru

Exodus, chapter 35 opening sentences dealing with Shabbat and the Mishkan- 39 melachot.

Terms to become familar with: Melacha, Melechet Machshevet, shevut, muktze

Torah Study- Exodus 15 Story of the bitter waters of Marah and the connection to public Torah reading in synagogues. Review of sentences, their general meaning and their hidden messages.

Research topic of Torah reading in synagogues and issues connected to this topic. Prepare in groups of 2-3 questions based on your research.

Assignment #12- Bamidbar 10:35-36- These sentences were said by Moshe when the people of Israel travelled in the desert. These sentences are also said when the Torah is taken out of the Ark and placed back inside. What are these sentences about? Go to the last paragraph of the previous assignment and research the topic of Torah reading in synagogues. What are some of the rules and laws concerning Torah reading in synagogues? Some sources are wikipedia, chabad.org and Jewish Virtual Library.  Due 1/28.

TuBishvat- sources Rosh Hashana 1:1 Mishna

Devarim, chapter 8-Shivat Haminim

Vayikra, chapter 19

Laws of Berachot-7 Minim

Definitions: Maaser, Terumah, Orlah, Shemitta

Monday, Jan.28- discuss in class the various rules regarding Torah reading on weekdays and on Shabbat, holidays, Rosh Hodesh looking at following terms: kohen, levi, yisrael, aliyah,hagbah, gelilah, maftir, haftarah, trope, yad, gabbai,

Review of sentences from sefer bamidbar mentioned above.

Beginning of chapter 11 of Bamidbar and the first listing of complaints of Bene Yisrael at beginning of chapter with use of Rashi

Pesukim- 1-9-Rashi- Questions on text- What were the people complaining about? Who were the Erev Rav? How did Hashem punish those who were complaining? What was on the menu of the slaves in Egypt? How does the Torah describe the manna? Could you find images of the manna, and share with the class information on the manna? (My Jewish Learning has an article on the manna.) Compare the text of the manna in Bamidbar with the text in Shemot describing the manna, chapter 16:31. Are the descriptions different or similar?

Feb.1 Parshat Hashavua-mishpatim-discussion of the role of the bet din in jewish law looking at the Beth Din of America website. Concepts of slavery in judaism, eye for an eye,shomrim, damages, charity and loans,evil speech, returning of lost objects. naase venishma.

Feb.4- Bamidbar- chapter 11 continued with discussion of manna, the way it looked and tasted, and why people complained. How does Moshe react to their complaints?

Feb,6-12- Comparison of texts between Shemot and Bamidbar dealing with the manna and the quail.

Review text of Shemot (Exodus) chapter 16 sentences 2-14:

Why were the people of Israel complaining?

What did they claim they had enough of in Egypt?

How will Hashem provide them food to eat?

What will come down at night and what will come down in the morning from the sky?

What was lying on top of the manna?

How does the Torah describe the manna?

Review text in sefer Bamidbar, chapter 11 sentences 4-15, 18-22, 31-33.

What kind of food do the people of Israel demand?

What menu did the Hebrews enjoy in Egypt?

How do the people of Israel describe the manna, and how does the Torah describe the manna?

How did people prepare the manna?

How does Moshe react to the complaints of the people about a lack of meat to eat?

Why will the people of Israel not enjoy eating the quail that Hashem will provide them?

How much quail fell on the earth?

What happened to the people eating the quail?

Comparison study between the texts in Shemot and Bamidbar.

How are the complaints of the people of Israel in both texts similar?

How is the menu in Shemot different from the menu in Bamidbar described by the people of Israel?

What differences can you find between the way the manna is described in Shemot and in Bamidbar?

How is Moshe’s reaction to the complaint about food in Shemot different from his reaction in Bamidbar?

 

How does the description of the arrival of the quail in sefer Shemot different from the description in Bamibar?

Feb. 11- Continue to work on assignment comparing accounts of manna and quail between Shemot and Bamidbar. Have students give their accounts.

Continue on to chapter 12- Moshe and Tzipporah. Miriam speaks about Moshe to Aharon. Hashem reacts. Miriam suffers tzaraat. What is happening here? Consult Rashi and also analyze the role of the prophet versus that of Moshe. Aspaklaria Hameira and Aspaklaria she’anah meira.  with account of chapter 12 on Friday, Mar.8 plus parshat hashavua-brief summary.

Megillat Esther- Review of story chapter by chapter concentrating on not only the events but the topics to be derived from this book:

Assimilation-then and now

Anti-Semitism-letter of Haman, and comparison and contrast with today

No mention of Hashem’s name in Megillah-Why is this book in Tanach?

Hidden versus revealed miracles-Definition of miracles

Relationship between Esther and Achashverosh-kosher or not?

Violence at end of book-Should we skip this part?

Mar.13- Questions for review in chapter 12 Bamidbar

Why was Miriam speaking about Moshe to Aharon?

How does the word, Cushite, refer to Tzipporah, Moshe’s wife?

What special character trait does Moshe have?

How do we differentiate between the powers of prophecy possessed by Moshe and those of Miriam, Aharon and other prophets?

Why do you think MIriam was punished with a skin disease?

Review of laws of Purim- Zachor (history and halacha), mikra megilla, mishloach manot, matanot laevyonim, seudat Purim

Mar.13- continuation to examine parashat zachor and looking at some of the issues of moral consequence, connection to Purim, definition of Amalek today, examination of sources in shemot, devarim and shmuel I

Mar. 18- Beginning of parshat Shelach in sefer bamidbar dealing with Moshe sending out spies to see Canaan. Review text in chapter 13 of Numbers, and discuss why it was good or not good to send out spies. What kinds of information would you want your spies to find out? What does Moshe seek? Why do the spies come back with a false report?

Continuation of megillat Esther- looking for places referring to G-d’s hiddenness in text. Review of laws of Purim.

Mar.22- Beginning of study of Hilchot Pesach- concept of chametz and methods of elimination-Three B’s. Mechirat chametz. Examine sources in Shemot 12. Parshat Hashavua- Tzav-Korban Todah.

Mar.29- Parashat Hashavua – Shmini, Parah, dealing with the deaths of Nadav and Avihu, kashrut, tumah and taharah

April 1- Laws of Pesach=preparing the house for Pesach-cleaning, kashering, bedikah- biur-bitul chametz. Definition of chametz- Chametz be’en, taaruvet chametz, chametz bemashehu, mechirat chametz, Types of kashering- libun, hagaloh, irui, milui veirui,

April 10-Pesach-Laws of the seder- review of the various steps of the Haggadah using the Sefaria text to analyze the following: Items on seder plate and reasoning behind them, how to prepare them. Kadesh- laws of the four cups of wine, size of cup, how much to drink, type of wine or grape juice used. Concept of reclining on left side and reason. To what parts of the seder does reclining apply? What to do this year on Friday night re:Kiddush and Havdalah on Saturday night. When to light candles first and second nights of Pesach. Why do we  wash our hands prior to the eating of the karpas? The four questions and why we ask them. Concept-Magid.

Sources you may use to discuss the topics above: www.aish.com-laws of the seder, www.jtsa.edu-laws of passover, www.ohr.edu-laws of fhe seder, wikipedia, jewish virtual library, ou.org/pesach.- In class asssignment to be started Friday, April 12.

April 17- Pesach issues continued: Concept of the blood libel, observance of Pesach in the ghetto and in the camps during WWII, anti-Semitism as part of Vehi Sheamdah. Soviet Passover

May 1- Shelach -story spies and their false report about the land of Israel. Why did Moshe send spies in the first place? How do we know Hashem gave him a choice? What did Hashem tell Moshe what the spies’ mission should be, and what did the people of Israel want? What instructions does Moshe give the spies? Why does he change Joshua’s name from Hoshea? Which tribe did not send spies?

May 6- Shelach- Why would the spies lie about the land of Israel? What half truth did the spies tell in order to convince the people of Israel to believe their full report? What was the purpose of bringing grapes? How did Caleb react to the report of the spies? How did the people react? Why do the spies compare themselves to grasshoppers?

Concepts of Menuval Birshut HaTorah, kedusha, morah av vaem, lifnei iver, tzedek bamishpat uvamishkal, lo taamod, hochacha, vehavta leraacha comacha, shaatnez, grudges.

May 12- Bamidbar- Understanding of the mentality of the spies who iied, and the approach of Caleb and Joshua to conquer the land. How do we understand the fear of the people of Israel to enter the land? How do they react? What is Hashem’s punishment? When did this take place? Tisha B’AV- use this point as a jumping point to the history of Churban connected to the 9 of Av. What happened on that day in Jewish History? How do we mark it today?

May 22-Preparation for Shavuot- What is shavuot? why do we celebrate it? Why does the Torah not give a specific date for the holiday? What day of what month is it celebrated? How many days of the Omer are there? What happened on Shavuot? Why is Divine Revelation so important in Judaism? What are some of the Ten Commandments? Why is it customary to eat dairy on Shavuot? What are some of the names given to this holiday and why? Why do people stay up all night and learn Torah the first night of Shavuot? JunWhy is it customary to eat dairy on this holiday? Why do we read the book of Ruth on Shavuot?

Book of Ruth- Who was Ruth? What is her connection to the holiday of Shavuot? What do we understand from her comments to Naomi about converting to Judaism? What is the connection between the conversion story of Ruth to modern day conversion issues? Why is Ruth known as the prime example of Chesed?

May 31- continuation of book of Ruth, brief lesson on Bechukotai, class work on topic involving development of halacha.

June 3- Chapter 14 of bamidbar-Reaction of the people of Israel. Why did they react so negatively about the land, and why did they want to return to  the  land where they were enslaved? How does Moshe persuade Hashem not to destroy Israel?

Continuation on Halacha project, and continuation in chapter 2 of Ruth dealing with her going to the field, meeting Boaz and his chesed to her, and her chesed to Naomi. Speak of  concept of yibum.

Review of Matan Torah.

 

parshat hashavua bamidbar-census story of king david and census shmuel bet 24

June 12- analysis of reasons for the fast of 17th of Tammuz and 9Av. massechet taanit last perek- research topics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October 4

Grade 6 Homework Assignments-Rabbi Finkelstein

First assignment-questions on the opening sentence of the Ten Commandments- to be found under Middle School blog. Due Oct.5

Assignment #2- Why does Hashem in the Ten Commandments tell the people of Israel that He took them out of Egypt, and does not mention he had created the world? Due Oct.12

Assignment #3- Go to Sefaria, Exodus, chapter 21, sentence 12. What do you think the Torah’s point of view is regarding capital punishment? Is it in favour or against?

Summary of the Mishna below from Makkot. (Talmud, Seder Nezikin, chapter one, mishna 10.)

A court that puts somebody to death one time in seven years, and some say, seventy years, is a destructive court as it does not try to find a way to free the accused killer. Rabbi Tarfon and Rabbi Akiva say that had they been judges in that court, nobody would ever have been convicted of murder. Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said that these Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Tarfon would have encouraged more people to kill.

Answer the following questions: Why does the Mishna regard a court that puts somebody to death every seven or seventy years as a murdering court? Why do Rabbi Tarfon and Rabbi Akiva state that if they had served in the court, no person  would have ever been put to death?  Why did Rabbi Shimon Ben Gamliel condemn the statement of Rabbi Tarfon and Rabbi Akiva? What is your feeling about the death penalty?  Test due November 5)

Assignment #4- Exodus 21:13- What happens if someone kills somebody accidentally? Does he suffer the same penalty as one who kills purposely? Should people be held responsible if they are careless, for example, a drunk driver, manufacturing company producing defective vehicles, etc. Should a bartender who gives someone to much to drink as responsible as the drinker? ( assignment due: Nov. 21

Assignment #5- New topic-What are the five types of damages one must pay when one injures somebody else in a fight? Physical, agony, medical costs, time lost for work, embarrassment. What moral lessons do we learn from this law (Exodus 21:18-19) (assignment due, Nov.23)

Assignment #6-Work in groups of 3 to answer the following questions:  Joshua gives Marty  something of value to watch for a certain period of time. Joshua does not pay Marty to watch the item, and the item is lost. Should Marty pay for the lost item, or not? Would it matter if Marty was paid to watch the item? What would happen if the item were stolen? What would happen if there was an earthquake and the item was damaged? What would happen if Marty was careless in how he was taking care of the item?

(Sources in the Torah: Exodus (Shemot) chapter 22, verse 6-8). You may also google the laws of the Shomer (watchman) to get a better idea. I will be working with each group and helping you with your work. This is an in class assignment for the next three lessons.  Assignment due Nov. 26

Assignment #7-Chanukah-Kahoots game testing knowledge of Chanukah. Research the topic of the Menorah of the Temple using google. Find out how big it was, how it was lit daily, what happened to it, what is the connection to the Chanukah story, where the Menorah is today.

Assignment #8-Review of the laws of the shomerim-Shomer Chinam- no pay, not responsible for loss or theft, accident, but is liable for negligence.

Shomer Sachar- paid, responsible for loss and theft, not responsible for accident, liable for negligence.

Socher- pays rent to use an object- liable for theft and loss, not responsible for accident, liable for negligence.

Shoel-Borrower-liable for everything including accident,unless owner is with him at time he is using it.

Take your answers about Joshua and Marty and identify your answers with the specific shomer described above.

Can one who watches something for somebody else use if for personal use? How much care should one give in watching something for somebody? Does it matter if the shomer is paid or not?

MIketz- Did Joseph do the right thing by not telling his brothers he was alive? Did his dreams come true?

Review of previous assignment dealing with the Shomrim and the cases of  Joshua and Marty.

Assignment #9-Review of the laws of the shomrim.

New topic-Tzedakah- What is tzedekah? Why do we give charity?

Analysis of the eight steps of charity according to Maimonides. Do you  agree or disagree with his steps and their order?

From worse to best:  Source-Maimonides, Mishne Torah, 10:7-14.

  1. Person gives unwillingly.
  2. Person doesn’t give enough, but gives with a smile.
  3. Person gives only after being asked.
  4. Person gives before being asked.
  5. Person does not know who is receiving the money, but the poor person knows who gave him the money.
  6. Person knows who is receiving his money, but the poor person does not know who gave it to him.
  7. Both the one who gives, and the one who receives the money, do not know each other. Everything happens secretly.
  8. Person finds the poor person a job, or gives him a loan. or enters into a partnership with him.

Assignment based on the study of Tzedakah Groups of 3-4 to work on the following:

You as the leaders of the Jewish Federation of Ottawa, and you have received a gift of $100,000 to donate to various causes. What questions would you ask of those that would approach you for money for their cause? List the types of charitable groups that could approach you for money, e.g., hospital, school, etc.  Would you only give to Jewish causes, non-Jewish causes,mixture of both?  How would you know what causes are legitimate and which ones are not? How would you distribute the money to the various causes which approach you?

Assignment #10- Sefaria, Book of Exodus (Shemot) chapter 19

Review of the exodus from Egypt and the drowning of the Egyptians at the Red Sea

Chapter 19- At Mount Sinai. Answer the following questions based on the text:

In which month did Bnei Yisrael arrive in the Sinai desert?

What do you think it means that Hashem carried the people of Israel on wings of eagles?

What does it mean that we are the ‘chosen people of G-d’ (verses 5-6). Do you agree or disagree? Why?

Assignment #11- Review of the laws of kashrut: What is kosher, and what is not? What are the kosher symbols of meat and fish, chicken? What are the restrictions in terms of meat and milk together? Begin with a discussion regarding the following areas of kashrut: baked goods, processed foods, dairy items, wine, kashrut supervision, vegetables and fruits, developing the kosher kitchen, shechita, melichah, kashering of meat, liver, tevillat keilim,kashering of utensils.

Assignment #12- What kinds of kashrut issues can come up with food products, restaurants? What kinds of ingredients present kashrut problems? Why are some cheeses kosher and some are not? What is chalav yisrael, and why are some Jews particular about only eating chalav yisrael? What is glatt kosher in reference to meat?

Assignment #13-Exodus, chapter 19-In which month did the people of Israel arrive at Mount Sinai? What were they to receive at Mount Sinai?

Who is called Beit Yaakov, and who is called Bnai Yisrael?

What does the Torah use two different words in how the law shall be taught to the people of Israel? Tomar-Beit Yaakov, Taged-Bnai Yisrael?

What do you think it means when the sentence says that Hashem carried the people of Israel on wings of eagles?

The Torah calls the Jews the Chosen People. What does that mean?Do you agree or disagree with the title?

Answers for above questions due on Wed, Jan,24

Assignment #14-Examination of the Ten Commandments. What does each one mean?  Have students come up with questions about G-d’s existence, an exercise that can be done in groups of  2-3

finding mount sinai-see various maps and videos

Assignment #15-We look at the Yigdal prayer which is the song based on the Rambam’ s 13 principles of faith.

Sing Yigdal and examine the key points of the prayer.

Mishpatim-Concept of Beit Din -google term and report back on finding. What does a Beit Din, and what areas of Halacha is it involved in?

Concept of the Hebrew slave-How do you react when you read about the Hebrew slave? Using Sefaria to identify the laws conneced to this person. What questions could you ask about this concept?

Wednesday, Jan.30-mishpatim, continued. Study of the Ir Miklat, kidnapping, types of damages paid for injuries- Damage, agony, medical costs, time lost from work, humiliation. If you were a judge, how would you penalize somebody who injured somebody else?

What is the concept of an eye for an eye?

Four levels of damage- Shor, Bor, Maveh, Hever

Continuation on parshat hashvua- laws of kashrut about mixing meat and milk. Chapter 24- Naaseh venishma. The Torah says that Nadav, Avihu and 70 elders of Israel saw G-d. What does this mean? Conversion of the Jews to Judaism in the Torah. How does it happen today?

Feb.4-shema- meaning of shema, eid, echad,  baruch shem kevod malchuto, veahavta. Closing of eyes for recitation of shema-why? Experiment with the closing of the eyes during recitation of that line. What do you feel? What goes through your mind on reciting first line of shema? Why do we repeat it if we are not concentrating on the line? How do you love Hashem? Connect to Yigdal prayer.

Torah- chapter 24 of mishpatim- read through sentences. Ask to visualize what Nadav and Avihu and others saw. Draw it or describe it.

Feb.6- what does the vision of the sapphire stone symbolize?  Read through the text of chapter 24 regarding Moshe’ ascending Mt. Sinai to receive the Torah. Develop questions based on the text.

Feb. 11-Golden Calf incident. Summarize the end of mishpatim with Moshe ascending Mt Sinai for 40 days and his failure to come down at the end of that period. Chapter 32-reaction of Hebrews. Questions to ask about Torah account.- use of text Sefaria/

Analysis of the Book of Esther-Review of events in the chapters of the book with the use of Sefaria.

Feb, 27-Looking at the concept of tefillah. Questions: what is prayer? concept of keva and kavannah, using the words of the siddur or our own words. Study of tefillah as composed by Moshe to save Jews after the Golden Calf incident.

Continuation in the Megillah-review and questions on text of chapter 2.

Mar.4- continuation in the megilla and examination of tefilla and its concepts with use of siddur. (lesson plan on tefillah). Review of the Golden Calf event with the continuation in regard to what actually happened with Aaron’s participation in the making of the calf. Examining the psukim in chapter 32 of Shemot.

Mar.13- Questions for review on the Golden Calf incident:

Why did the people want Aharon to make a god to replace Moshe?

Why did Aharon ask the people to remove their gold?

How could the people believe that the golden calf Aharon made took them out of Egypt?

How did the people celebrate the making of the calf?

Why does Hashem refer to the people as Moshe’s nation? Why does Moshe refer to the people as Hashem’s people?

How does Moshe react to Hashem’s statement to destroy the people?

Continuation with megillat Esther

chapter 5- preparations by Haman, Esther’s private party with the king and Haman

Chapter 6- Beginning of downfall of Haman

Mar.15- Review of the laws of the holiday of Purim -megillah, mishloach manot, seuday, matanot laevyonim,machatzit hashekel

Continuation in review of text of Golden Calf looking at the prayer of Moshe and speaking as to how Moshe’s prayer inspires us in tefillah today. What arguments does Moshe use to ‘persuade’ Hashem not to destroy the people?

Parshat Hashavua-Vayikra- shabbat Zachor – importance of listening to word of maftir and connection to our times.

Mar. 18- continuation of text in Exodus 32 referring to Golden Calf incident. Review of texts and explanations of those texts. Examination of role of Aharon in making the Golden Calf. Debate regarding that involvement using text. Was he right or wrong, and if wrong, why was he not punished and deprived the right to be Kohen Gadol?

Review of laws of Purim.

Beginning of study of Hilchot Pesach-Usage of texts from Shemot starting with chapter 12 dealing with the laws of Korban Pesach.

Parshat Hashavua-Tzav, birkat Hagomel

Terms connected to hoiiday of Pesach – Biur, bitul, bedikat chamet

Mar. 29- Parshat Hashavua- Shmini and Parashat Parah dealing with the topics of the deaths of Aaron’s two sons, kashrut, the concepts of tumah and taharah both at the end of Shmini and Parah.

April 1- Laws of Pesach=preparing the house for Pesach-cleaning, kashering, bedikah- biur-bitul chametz. Definition of chametz- Chametz be’en, taaruvet chametz, chametz bemashehu, mechirat chametz, Types of kashering- libun, hagaloh, irui, milui veirui,

April 10-Pesach-Laws of the seder- review of the various steps of the Haggadah using the Sefaria text to analyze the following: Items on seder plate and reasoning behind them, how to prepare them. Kadesh- laws of the four cups of wine, size of cup, how much to drink, type of wine or grape juice used. Concept of reclining on left side and reason. To what parts of the seder does reclining apply? What to do this year on Friday night re:Kiddush and Havdalah on Saturday night. When to light candles first and second nights of Pesach. Why do we  wash our hands prior to the eating of the karpas? The four questions and why we ask them. Concept-Magid.

Develop questions to ask your parents about the seder:  Use Sefaria as a source for Pesach Haggada. How many can you come up with?

Continuation with the seder- draw a comparison between the four questions that we say with those mentioned in the mishna. What differences are there?

What interpretations could you come up with about the four children mentioned in the Haggada?  Look at their questions or lack thereof and the answers given to them. Are they satisfactory?

Look at the paragraph of Vehi She-amdah, What is the message and is it true today?

What are the ten plagues, and what do we do to symbolize them?

What is dayenu about?

Describe the procedures of rachtzah, motzi matza, maror, korech.

April 29- Continuation in sefer Shemot- chapter 32- review of what happened in regard to the Golden Calf incident. Questions to examine in regard to what happened: Why did Aaron agree to build this idol in the first place? Why didn’t he give up his life as others have done after him in Jewish history, e.g., Crusades, inquisition, etc.

May 1-Why didn’t Moshe kill Aaron? Why did he pray for him instead? Did Bnei Yisrael trick Aharon into building the golden calf? How does Moshe react? Why does he smash the tablets? Did he do the right thing in smashing the tablets that Hashem made? Should Hashem have punished Moshe for smashing the tablets? What argument does Moshe use to persuade Hashem not to punish Israel for bowing down to the calf? Why would Moshe pray to Hashem to spare the people of israel from destruction, and still smash the tablets? Why did Moshe force the people of Israel to drink from the ashes of the destroyed golden calf?

May 3- Parshat Hashavua-Acharei Mot- Seder Haavodah, shechutei chutz, not to eat blood of animal, imitating outside world-ok or not ok, relationships.

May 6- Golden Calf incident continued-Describe the tablets that Moshe broke. What miracles were noted with the original tablets? Why did Moshe want to know everything about the essence of  Hashem? What does Hashem answer him? What does it mean that Hashem wlll show him His back>

Concepts of Menuval Birshut HaTorah, kedusha, morah av vaem, lifnei iver, tzedek bamishpat uvamishkal, lo taamod, hochacha, vehavta leraacha comacha, shaatnez, grudges.

May 12- Exodus, chapter 33, sentences-Why does Moshe ask Hashem to show him all that there is to know about Hashem? Why does Hashem refuse to do that? What does Hashem show Moshe? Why does Moshe not want an ordinary angel to guide the people of Israel in the desert? What do you think it means that Hashem will only show Moshe His back and not his front? Why do you think Rashi says that Hashem will show Moshe the back knot of the tefillin? ?

May 22-Preparation for Shavuot- What is shavuot? why do we celebrate it? Why does the Torah not give a specific date for the holiday? What day of what month is it celebrated? How many days of the Omer are there? What happened on Shavuot? Why is Divine Revelation so important in Judaism? What are some of the Ten Commandments? Why is it customary to eat dairy on Shavuot? What are some of the names given to this holiday and why? Why do people stay up all night and learn Torah the first night of Shavuot? Why is it customary to eat dairy on this holiday? Why do we read the book of Ruth on Shavuot?

Book of Ruth- Who was Ruth? What is her connection to the holiday of Shavuot? What do we understand from her comments to Naomi about converting to Judaism? What is the connection between the conversion story of Ruth to modern day conversion issues? Why is Ruth known as the prime example of Chesed?

May 31-brief discussion about Bechukotai, discussion about final exam and expectations in terms of use of sources. Continuation of book of Ruth-chapter 2 dealing with following areas of halacha: Chesed, leket, peah, schichacha. With use of Sefaria, answer the following questions:Why did Ruth go to gather grain in the fields? What promises did Boaz make Ruth? What answer did Boaz give Ruth as to why he was encouraging her to gather grain from his field rather than from other people’s fields? What chesed did Ruth perform for Naomi?

review of texts-Shemot 19-20, Ruth  1-4

June 3-Continuation in book of Ruth in chapter 2 looking at the concept of Chesed. What is chesed? Have students break into groups, research and present ideas of chesed.

Continuation in Shemot 33- Concept of Kel rachum vechanun- 13 traits of Hashem, and how we are supposed to emulate them.  Why does Hashem show Moshe that about Himself, and does not fully  reveal his glory? What does it mean that Hashem says that one can only see Hashem’s knot on the back of the tefillin shel rosh?

parashat hashavua-bemidbar-census -story of king david end of shmuel bet chapter 24

Choose a topic and research it:

Why is Shavuot Chag Habikkurim, holiday of first fruits?

Why do we read megillat Ruth on Shavuot?

Why do we eat dairy on Shavuot?

What is Akdamut about?

What is Tikkun Leil Shavuot, and why do people do it?

June 12- analysis of reasons for the fast of 17th of Tammuz and 9Av. massechet taanit last perek- research topics

June 17- shemot, chapter 33-34-Kevod Hashem, 13 middot of Hashem, Hashem’s tefillin knot.