(718) 858-8663

October 18th – Chag Sukkot Sameach !

JS with Ariana
It’s been a lot of fun in third grade.
After learning about Rosh HaShana, we went together to perform Tashlich. It was beautiful and meaningful to see all students engaged in this important mitzvah to seek a new beginning and work towards self improvement.
This past weeks we have been learning all about Sukkot. We learned the blessings we recite when dwelling the Sukkah as well as the blessing we recite when we shake the Lulav. We spent time learning about the 4 ha minim, the four species, their significance as well as the fact that one can only perform the mitzvah when we have all 4 species together. This symbolizes that the Jewish people are at their best when there is unity. Likewise, we learned that what makes us different is what makes us beautiful and just like all different species are essential to perform this mitzvah so is each and everyone of us.
We also learned about the Ushpizin, the spiritual guests that visit our Sukkah every year.
In the spirit of the holiday, we learned the story ‘The Shanghai Sukkah”. We discovered that people of different cultures can help each other out in the time of need. This story also highlights the importance of true friendship as well as making the best out of situations we are confronted with.

3rd grade Hebrew with Rimma and Tomer

For the past two weeks, we have focused on the unit “Our house” and learned a Hebrew vocabulary related to this topic.

We learned a song “הצריך הזה” , created a set of related pictures into a sequence and wrote a correct sentence for each picture. Afterwards, we organized the song into a smooth narrative. We practiced and focused on the use of the word Need with a following infinitive . This was useful for increasing our accuracy and memorization and helped us to build confidence in speaking the language.

Here is the link for the song:


In addition, We started a new unit “Family and Friendship “ .We discussed what is a friend and came up with ideas that friends are people that we feel close to, people who have similar interests, people who care about us, and we can trust. We brainstormed how can we spend time with a good friend and read a short poem about different types of friends: friend of everyday, friend of shabbat, friend for any time or friend of the moment, friend who always gives and more. We will continue to discuss what friends do for each other and what makes a good friend?

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל שַׁבָּת

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל יוֹם-יוֹם

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל תָמִיד

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל פִּתְאוֹם.

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל לָקַחַת

יֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים שֶׁל לָתֵת.

 !!! וְאִם יֵשׁ מַזָליֵשׁ חֲבֵרִים בֶּאֱמֶת 


General Studies with Hilary

On October 11, we started our school’s celebration of it’s 25th Anniversary. We kicked off the day with a whole school Kabbalat Shabbat, where our students were able to bring in the weekend with their buddies. Next, we went through fun stations! In one, we were able to begin the mosaic that now lines the stairwell in the yard. The next was building what we think our school could look like in 2045. The third station was going back in time to the 90s, learning dances as well as the candy trends of the decade. The last station was a scavenger hunt of answer questions about what was happening the world for every year our school has been in existence. We ended our morning by interviewing a Senesh Alum (Marisa Miller), as well as a former Senesh parent/staff member (Angie Lieber). In the afternoon, we wrote and decorated cards that discuss how each of us can show kindness here at Hannah Senesh.

In academic news, we are in the midst of our writing unit, coming to a close of our revision stage. In our small moments, we have worked on:

  • making a mental movie in our heads
  • verbally rehearsing our stories to a peer (to help us practice what we want to write)
  • trying different introductions in our story, to hook the reader
  • finding at least one place to add dialogue to our story
  • trying different conclusions in our story, to keep the reader engaged and attached to the story

These pieces will be completely finished by the end of the month, and will be such a huge feat for so many in our class — not just with these new strategies, but for the proud moment of ACTUALLY writing and finishing a 3rd grade piece of writing! So very exciting!

We are almost at the end of our second unit of math, working on mental addition/subtraction, as well as rounding numbers up or down. The sooner students have their smaller math facts memorized (for sums less than 20), the easier larger math will be for them — promise! We have a game that we use in class, to help with this, called “Addition Top It.” It is an easy game to play at home, and younger/older siblings should be able to play with your student as well!

Single Digit Addition Top It

Number of Players 2-3 people
Materials Needed 1 deck of cards → remove the face cards
  1. Evenly deal the cards between the players, leaving the cards face down
  2. Each player flips ONE card, trying to flip at the same time
  3. In your head, add the numbers together to create a sum
  4. Be the first to say the sum — receive the cards
  5. Repeat steps 1-4
  6. If the players say the sum at the same time, each player keeps their original card
How to Win Be the player who is in control of ALL the cards in the deck

Please reach out if you are curious about how to play more advanced levels of this game!

Over the past two weeks, in Social Studies, we have worked on mapping and thinking about what our world is. You might have seen our concentric circle “bullseyes” on the bulletin board. This shows the six levels that students live in.The first, inner, level is our address. Next is the city we live in. Following that, in the third circle is the state we are from. After, in the fourth circle, is the country we live in. Next, in the fifth circle, is the continent we live in. Finally, the outside circle is the hemisphere we live in. The inner circle represents ourselves and our family — the inner workings to each of our lives. When we go out into the city or state that we live in, we are thinking about our fellow citizens — those that we are voting with or hoping to represent us as a city, county and state. As we get into the circle about our country, it is thinking about ourselves in relation to our country as a hole, and way to support it. Here, too, we are hoping that those in government are representing our needs. The final circle (or circles for those that included planets and galaxies) represents mankind as a whole.

This school year is really ZOOMING by, and each and every student has been growing as learners and citizens of our classroom community. I cannot wait to see what November will bring!

Shabbat shalom,


Science with Sammi

The month may be full of three day weeks and special activities, but the 3rd grade scientists have been making the most of their time in science! The third grade has been learning about what really makes a scientist by researching scientists who work for the Smithsonian institute. By scanning QR codes, students watched interviews of scientists and took notes on what they study, where and how they study it, and what made them want to become scientists.
        Through these videos, the students were able to recognize that scientists are so much more than just a person in a lab coat. Scientists can work in labs, in the jungle, in the desert, and in museums. Scientists can focus on preventing extinction, studying human eating habits, and even restoring art. The possibilities are endless! Most importantly, they saw that all of these scientists found their passion at different points in their lives but still all are living their dream jobs.
        Now, students are beginning on a path of developing the language to describe what all scientists do. To accomplish this, they are beginning to learn and live the scientific method. More exciting learning to come!