Grades 6-8: Summer Reading with a Twist

Did your sibling change the password to your Netflix account?

Are your parents nagging you to pick up a book?

Never fear…summer reading is here!

Reading Dog - Meme on Imgur


Below is a list of novels related to Judaism that you may read over the summer. Although I have not yet read all of these books, the majority of these novels have come highly touted.

The Jewish Book Council has also created a variety of book lists based on interest: Reading Lists

25 YA Books Featuring Jewish Protagonists

My Jewish Learning’s Jewish Reading List


Mitzvot/Jewish Teachings: 


Interesting Reads:

Graphic Novels:

Grades 6-8: Rabbi Bulka Kindness Project Update

Over the last month, our students have been busy engaging in opportunities to spread kindness. We spent time creating groggers for younger members of our community and donating them to local synagogues. This was a fantastic way to spread some ruach as students prepared for Purim celebrations.

Last week, our students were able to send messages of hope and strength to the family members of the hostages in Israel. The JCC along with the Israeli Embassy organized this important initiative.  Students spent time writing heartfelt messages in journals which will be delivered to the families. The community of Ottawa stands in solidarity with all of the hostages, their families, and friends.

Am Yisrael Chai' has become an anthem for the Jewish people — but where did it come from? - St. Louis Jewish Light

Grades 6-8: Pesach is Coming!

We will be celebrating Pesach with Grades 6-8 on Friday, April 19th. We will be taking a trip down memory lane and completing a model seder with each of the classes. Our seder will include a variety of activities and discussion prompts. 

Passover Seder Dinner : Recipes and Cooking : Food Network | Food Network

When: Friday, April 19th, 2024

1:45 PM-3:45 PM (Pds.7-9)

Each student is asked to bring to school on that day (in addition to his/her lunch) the following:

  • 1 hard-boiled egg, peeled and wrapped in plastic/foil wrap

  • 1 stalk of celery

  • 1 piece of romaine lettuce

  • The remainder of the Seder ingredients will be provided by the P.T.A. We will serve horseradish, egg matzah, grape juice, and NUT-FREE charoset.

Should you have any concerns regarding food allergies, please provide your child with their own food.

Students may choose to dress up in holiday attire for their seder.

Pin by Miguel Rivero on subliminacion | Mickey mouse pictures, Mickey mouse  drawings, Mickey mouse art

Grades 7-8: Canada’s Role in the M.S. St. Louis Assignment (Due: Tuesday, March 26th)

This week we will be discussing the horrific narrative of the MS St. Louis. We watched an incredible documentary that provided our class with testimonies from historians and survivors who experienced this infamous event firsthand. Students will read and analyze a document that discusses specific policies in Canada that were enacted to keep the Jewish people out.

Passengers aboard the St. Louis, seeking refugee from Nazi-occupied Europe, wait to find out if they will be allowed entry into Cuba in June 1939.

Click the link below to access the assignment:

Canada’s Role in the M.S. St. Louis

Grades 7-8: Holocaust Survivor Narrative Reflection (Due: Friday, March 1st)

Today students will read and reflect upon the story of a Holocaust Survivor. The website  Holocaust Survivor Stories provides students with various personal narratives of survivors.

*Students are encouraged to read multiple stories to determine which narrative speaks to them personally*

Directions: Students will choose a survivor’s narrative to read. After reading their story, students will answer the following reflection questions. 

  1. What feelings did this narrative elicit? (Explain the thoughts or emotions you felt while reading this story)
  2. What part of the story did you find most intriguing? Why?
  3. What lessons can you learn from this narrative?
  4. How could you use this story to educate others?


Answer the questions in paragraph form. 

Review reflective writing strategies: Reflective Writing Google Slides


Click the link below to access the Holocaust Survivor Narrative Reflection Graphic Organizer:

Holocaust Survivor Narrative Reflection Graphic Organizer

Grades 6-8: Fundraiser for Magen David Adom (Rabbi Bulka Kindness Project)

The Grade 6 students have been making bracelets and will begin selling them tomorrow to raise money for the Magen David Adom. Each bracelet will be sold for $5. Bracelets will be sold during the first and second recesses outside of the chapel. Please help support this important initiative!

handcrafted braslets for Israel by ezra.grossman

Grades 7-8: WWI/Treaty of Versailles Assignment (Due: Thursday 1/25)

Students are being asked to complete a reading comprehension/two viewpoints graphic organizer assignment. This assignment is based on the WWI/Treaty of Versailles note packet that we have spent the last four classes reviewing. We have been focusing on discussing these events from varying perspectives.


Treaty of Versailles - Wikipedia

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Grades 7-8: Treaty of Versailles Guided Notes

How could the Holocaust happen?

As we continue to study and analyze the various components of the Grade 8 Jewish Studies curriculum, this week we are beginning to set up the Holocaust. Rather than diving directly into the start of the Holocaust, the Grade 8 class is learning about WWI. This foundation will play a very important role in understanding the historical context in which the Holocaust begins.

Attached you will find the WWI/Treaty of Versailles Presentation and Guided Notes Packet. This will be useful for any students who missed any of the notes during class. Students should review their notes throughout the week.

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Grades 6-8: Showing Support for Israel

Our middle school students have been discussing/brainstorming various ways we can show support for Israel. Today our school raised money for the Magen David Adom. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Nation of Israel. עַם יִשְׂרָאֵל חַי

10 Ways to Pray for Israel Today ‒ Day to Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem | Jewish Voice




Grades 6-8: Supporting the State of Israel

Yesterday we had the opportunity to video call a former OJCS student named Maayan. She is an Israeli high school student who shared her perspective and personal experience with our Middle School. She advocated for our students to be ambassadors to Israel within our community. She encouraged our students to ask questions, uncover media bias, and ensure that we remain up to date as new events unfold. Our thoughts and prayers remain with the Nation of Israel.

Next Friday, we will have a dress down to fundraise for Magen David Adom.