March 29

Grade 6: Who Says We Can’t Learn About Passover Virtually?

As Passover approaches, we will spend the week in Jewish Studies focusing on the modern meaning of the Haggadah. Students will be creating their own 2020 Virtual Haggadah. Students will work in groups to design their own Haggadah. Additionally, students will be choosing one Passover song to rewrite with a modern twist. You will have the opportunity to work on this assignment Dr. Marcovitz and Mr. Washerstein’s Jewish Studies classes. 

Click here to find out more information about this assignment: Virtual Haggadah + Modern Passover Tune Assignment Details

Click here to learn more about each component of the Passover Seder: Stages of the Passover Seder

  • This document will be incredibly useful as students read, analyze, and develop their own virtual Haggadah.


Due date: Your Virtual Haggadah+ Modern Passover Tune must be submitted by the end of class on Friday, April 3rd. Please share your Haggadah with Dr. Marcovitz and Mr. Washerstein via Google Doc. 


Part 1- Creating a Virtual Haggadah

  • Students will dive into the various components of the Passover Seder and provide a new modern meaning.
  • Stages of the Seder Explanation (Click here to learn more about each part of the Passover Seder from Kadesh to Nirtzah)  


Part 2- Creating a Modern Passover Tune 

  • Please note that this portion of the project is not required. Groups that finish early and would like an additional challenge can choose to rewrite one of the classic passover songs. 



Group 1: Audrey, Maytal, Matthew, Daniel, Sophie

Group 2: Elisha, Meirav, Yaakov, Leo, Griffin, Ava

Group 3: Samara, Maya, Yardayna, David, Becca


Check out this video to get into the musical spirit!




March 27

Grade 6: Let’s See Those Ketubahs

This week we continued discussing the various traditions associated with the Jewish wedding. Yesterday we reviewed the text of the ketubah. If possible, students are being asked to post a picture of their parents ketubah. As discussed in class yesterday if this is not applicable for every family or someone does not feel comfortable, feel free to disregard this task.

The purpose of this task is to allow the students to see how each ketubah is unique. The text and visuals can be adapted to meet specific requirements or choices that the couple has made.

Post a picture of your parents’ ketubah in the comments! If this post does not allow you to comment a picture…post the ketubah picture on your personal blog and comment the link to that blog post in the comment section below.


Here is my ketubah

March 24

Grade 6: Ask Your Family

Today we talked about a few different marital traditions within Judaism. We discussed the following:

  • The chatan and kallah not seeing each other week before the wedding
  • Fasting on the wedding day
  • Separation of men and women prior to the wedding ceremony
    • Chatan’s Tish
    • Kabbalat Panim

As we discussed, couples often choose to incorporate all, some, or a mix of these traditions into their own Jewish wedding. Every wedding is unique! The students were asking a variety of great questions.


Homework-Prepare for our class discussion tomorrow

Ask your parents the following questions:

  1. What traditions did they incorporate into their wedding?
  2. Did they have a chatan’s tish or kabbalat panim ceremony?
  3. What was unique about their wedding?

Jot down a few notes as they speak and be ready to share!


February 25

Grade 6: Shalom Bayit

This week in Jewish Studies our class is discussing dating, marriage, and the concept of Shalom Bayit. Students have been learning about the shidduch process. We have watched videos and discussed the importance of recognizing, understanding, and appreciating the values of peers and potential life partners. Over the next few days, we will be focusing on the importance of “peace within the home”. Students will read and analyze the following text in an attempt to draw their own conclusions and connections.



January 21

Grade 6: Responsibilities of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah Quiz (Wednesday, January 29th, 2020)

Yesterday our class decided that our next Jewish studies assessment will take place on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020. The review sheet below provides students with key terms to define along with short answer practice questions. Students should review their notes in order to prepare for the quiz.


Click the link below to access the review sheet:

Responsibilities of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah Review Sheet



January 14

Grade 6: Are You Obligated to Wear Tzitzit While Playing Basketball?

This week we have been uncovering the meaning behind the tallit and tzitzit. We discussed the difference between the tallit gadol and the tallit katan. We also learned about the tekhelet (blue thread) that is to be attached when available to the fringes of a four cornered garment. The students were excited to research and learn about the mysterious “chilazon”.

If you want to learn more about the chilazon and tekhelet click here:

Today students will be looking at various texts and verses that discuss the mitzvah of tzitzit. Students will also learn about the blessing that is said prior to putting on a tallit.

January 8

Grades 6-8: Israeli Inventions with Shai

Today the middle school students learned about Israeli inventions with our shinshin Shai! They discussed the various narratives behind some of the most important Israeli inventions. The students learned about Waze, Pillcams, USB,  the Iron Dome, and Krembo Wings.

Students used this interactive website to record their responses  :

Shai emphasized the idea that inventors and innovators are each unique in their own way. Each class participated in an activity that focused on utilizing their creativity and resourcefulness. Students were tasked with taking an everyday object and thinking about how they could repurpose those objects. Maybe the next greatest invention will be created in our very own OJCS Makerspace!

December 2

Grade 6: Responsibilities of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah Song Creation (Extended Due Date: Tuesday 12/10)

This week students will be tasked with creating a music video for their original song that highlights the various responsibilities of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Students will be working in groups to create a product that demonstrates their knowledge and understanding.  Students should look back at their Bar/Bat Mitzvah Unit Prep. Assignment to re-read key words they might want to include. Additionally, students can always re-read the notes we use in class.

The purpose of this activity is to allow students to discover how their lives changes within a Jewish context once reaching the age of Bar/Bat Mitzvah.


  • Video must focus on the traditions/responsibilities associated with becoming a Bar Mitzvah (remember that you should be able to clearly hear and understand the words in your song)
  • Min. of two minutes long
  • Five vocabulary terms must be included from the Bar/Bat Mitzvah Unit Prep.
  • Video must be edited

Sources that can help you create your song:


Read this rubric to uncover how you will be graded:

November 6

Grade 6: Bar/Bat Mitzvah Unit Prep Assignment

Please click the link below to access your next Jewish Studies assignment:

Bar/Bat Mitzvah Unit Prep Assignment

This assignment asks students to research the various terms associated with Bar/Bat Mitzvah. Additionally, students will reflect upon what becoming a Bar/Bat Mitzvah means to them. The purpose of this activity is generate discussion points revolving around important milestones within the Jewish life cycle.