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October 22: Weeks 7 and 8!


The past two weeks in Humanities classes have been filled with Julius Caesar, historical research writing, and lots of vocabulary! We practiced a variety of class structures while reading Julius Caesar: listening to an audiotape, reading out loud as a whole class, and reading in small groups. I loved watching students have exposure to the play in these ways. I am impressed with the progress of their social studies essays so far – the first outline, the first draft, the first big essay can be a little confusing and a little daunting. All of my students were challenged to think deeply about the values of Hatmadah and Masa when approaching a new task or unfamiliar situation.

Keep an eye out for these upcoming Greek and Latin roots!

  • Mikros – “small”
  • Minuo, minuere, minui, minitum – “to lesson”
  • Minus – “less”
  • Tenuo, tenuare, tenuavi, tenuatum – “to make thin”
  • Tenuis – “thin”
  • Satis – “enough”
  • Impleo, implere, implevi, impletum – “to fill”
  • Plenus – “full”


The 7th Grade has immersed themselves into the world of real, and briefly imaginary, numbers. We’ve mastered integers, we’ve had debates about the existence of negative zero and now we’ve entered the realm of operations with rational numbers in their primary form; the fraction. Next we’ll learn about converting these fractions into decimals and discussing how to determine whether a number is a terminating, repeating, or continuous decimal. After all of that is practiced and mastered, we’ll learn how to do all of it once again using a much simpler method; a little tool called the scientific calculator. “May we use a calculator for these questions?” The answer in the coming weeks will finally be “Yes!”

Hebrew Heritage

להורים שלום
השבוע התלמידים התחילו לעבוד על מבחני אוונט שימשכו כשבועיים. מבחנים אלה בודקים ארבע מיומנויות למידה, כתיבה, שמיעה, הבנת הנקרא, דיבור. המבחן הוא כלי מדד המאפשר לנו לבדוק את מצבם של התלמידים והיכן ניתן לסייע להם. אין להם כל השפעה על הציון בתעודה.
בנוסף, השינשינים הגיעו אלינו והעבירו פעילות על יום הזיכרון ליצחק רבין.
סוף שבוע טוב,


This week in Hebrew class the students had an online proficiency based assessment. The assessment checks all 4 skills (Oral, Reading, Writing, Listening).
This assessment gives us information regarding the students ability to function in Hebrew. It does not impact placement in Hebrew class and will not effect their overall grade.
This is our Fourth year using the test in Middle school and it allows us to track our students progress throughout the years.
Judaic Studies
We are concluding our study of the first 10 chapters of the book of Bmidbar/Numbers: in what ways is Bnai Yisrael now a stronger community? What do they lack? Students made maps of the Israelite camp, came up with theories for why Bnai Yisrael are given “assigned seats,” and reenacted the process of marching and then setting up camp again.
We also translated and explored with depth the first human conversation in Bmidbar: Moshe invites his father-in-law to join them on their journey to Israel, and Yitro says no. Why? How does a community balance having a strong identity with being welcoming to outsiders, and benefiting from the wisdom of an outsider’s perspective?
Finally, we discussed our own experiences of travel. Why do we often have arguments and conflicts on vacation? What happens when a long-awaited for dream begins to come true?
Shabbat shalom!
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As it meets on Monday and Tuesday, Israel class just got its start after the holidays! We begin each class by exploring a current events topic, such as Merkel’s visit to Israel and a recent discovery of a 2,000 year old stone with the name of Jerusalem!  The students reviewed Israel history learned in 5th and 6th grade by creating LEGO structures depicting key events in Israel’s history (pictures below of First Zionist Congress and the Sykes Picot Agreement) and by taking a multiple choice assessment. This past week, in commemoration of the assassination of Yitzchak Rabin we learned about Rabin’s life and discussed how and why he changed from a military man with a strong defensive policy to a man who took great risks to achieve peace.
Phyllis and Ilana NB
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