Chametz and Matzah Bake-Off. The yeladim in Morah Shani’s nursery aleph class at HANC’s Samuel & Elizabeth Bass Golding Early Childhood Center in West Hempstead are busy learning about Pesach. After learning about the differences between matzah and chametz, the students completed their unit with a bake- and taste-off!
First the children made soft pretzels using flour, sugar, yeast, and water, as an example of chametz, and then they baked matzah using only flour and water. The yeladim compared the pretzels and the matzah and discovered that the pretzels were “soft” and “fluffy” while the matzah was bumpy (thanks to holes poked into them with a fork) and crunchy. But everyone agreed that both the treats tasted delicious and that this was a yummy Pesach experiment!
Leaving Mitzrayim. First-grade students in Morah Katz and Morah Chavy’s class at HANC’s Elementary School brought the Pesach story to life by reenacting Bnei Yisrael’s exodus from Mitzrayim. The students dressed up in ancient garb and quickly ate their matzah and marror while leaving Mitzrayim in a hurry. The students then happily crossed the Yam Suf and sang the beautiful song from Hallel which recounts Bnei Yisrael’s departure from Egypt (“Btzeit Yisrael M’Mitztrayim, Beit Yaakov Me’am Loez”). After crossing the Yam Suf, the students were thrilled to celebrate that they were now a free nation that could serve Hashem.
Learning “How To.” First-grade students in Mrs. Nancy Greenberg’s class have been learning about sequencing and the language of sequencing, including word like first, then, next, and finally. In order to bring the concept of sequencing to life, the students each wrote and illustrated a “How To” book to explain an activity that they could do in four steps.
To finish the unit, the class made vanilla pudding and the students had to describe and write the steps in creating this delicious treat. Everyone agreed their favorite step was the last one—eat and enjoy!
Learning Braille. Third-grade students recently finished reading books about Helen Keller and Louis Braille. The children were amazed by the determination that each of them showed throughout their lives.
As a culminating activity, each student was asked to write a message to a friend in Braille. The students used “Puffy Paints” to form the Braille letters and then gave the message to a friend to read. The students were even more impressed with what Helen Keller and Louis Braille accomplished in their lives when they realized how hard it was to read the messages, and they had a sheet with the Braille alphabet in front of them!
Smelling Fishy! In honor of Parashat Shemini, students in fifth and sixth grades were excited to welcome Rabbi Goldberg, head of the Orthodox Union’s Fish Kashrut Division, for a very fishy lesson in kashrut. Rabbi Goldberg spoke to the children about what makes a fish kosher, and he showed the students examples of kosher and non-kosher fish. He also showed the students what to look for on a package in the supermarket to know whether or not the fish meets kosher requirements. The students then had an opportunity to scale their own fish and to take home the scales!
“Learning about hilchot kashrut in a parashah class is a wonderful thing, but nothing compares to being able to sit with and touch an actual fish, smells and all! The students will remember this hands-on lesson in kashrut forever,” explained Rabbi Michael Merrill, director of student programs.
UANI Representative Discusses Iran with Juniors and Seniors
By Bassy Kimelfeld
Last week, UANI (United Against Nuclear Iran) research director Matan Shamir, who has been tracking U.S. sanctions of Iran for months, spoke to HANC High School juniors and seniors about the not-for-profit advocacy group’s efforts to prevent Iran from fulfilling its ambition to obtain nuclear weapons.
Mr. Shamir mentioned that the threat of nuclear Iran is greater than ever. He raised the students’ awareness of the nature of the Iranian regime, including its desire and intent to possess nuclear weapons, as well as Iran’s role as a state sponsor of global terrorism and a major violator of human rights at home and abroad. Mr. Shamir stressed the importance of the public utilizing media outreach and persuading our elected leaders to voice a robust and united American opposition to a nuclear Iran.
Overall, the program was informative and put the issue of a nuclear Iran in perspective for students, pressing and inspiring many of them to take action via lobbying to strengthen sanctions and take on preventative measures.
This is one of the many programs that HANC High School brings to the forefront to engage students in conversation on important world matters. v