Archive | September, 2017

Enjoying the Beautiful Autumn!

28 Sep

Since we have a short Friday this week, the blog is arriving today! We have had a great week in the Chickadee classroom. We enjoyed the beautiful weather by playing outside as much as possible. We also enjoyed our classroom time and continue to spend a morning or two a week in the gym. We are lucky to have the gym available to us most mornings and the Chickadees love starting their day off with running, balls, hula hoops, and rings.

My Gym was so much fun! The Chickadees played with scarves, balls, and bowling pins. We saw a lot of dancing with the scarves, tossing the balls, and using the pins to push the balls around. It is always exciting to watch the Chickadees find unique ways to play with these new toys.

The weather was so beautiful today that we decided to explore the “fire drill” field. The Chickadees ran, skipped, walked, and tip toed around the field. They also played Ring Around the Rosy and felt rough and smooth trunks of trees. We looked for pinecones and leaves and even found a bug!

We took advantage of the nice weather and really enjoyed our time outside. Our recess is such a valuable time for the Chickadees to run, climb, push, throw, slide, and surround themselves in imaginative play.

We also enjoyed our classroom time this week! Play Dough continues to be a big hit, as does imaginative play in the kitchen and with dress up. The Chickadees also love to build with the many different materials in the classroom, play with cars, and use the peg boards!

It has been a full and fun week with the Chickadees! Have a great weekend!



27 Sep

Have you ever stepped back and really watched your child play? It’s one of the most interesting things in the world to me. We can set up an activity with a certain intention in mind and it will wind up being played with in a completely different way.

For example, Dramatic play:

Some friends decided it would be a good day for a camping trip. Almost all of the friends decided that before the camping trip they must first get on an airplane.



E.V, E.N. S.A. and L.L. were playing in the kitchen. E.V. said, “Hey, let’s go camping!” The friends agreed and got busy packing up some dishes, (sleeping bags) blankets and of course a few stuffies. E.N. said, “We must take an airplane over to the camp grounds.”

The friends asked if we could help by turning the tables into a tent. They also asked for some help in bringing the chairs over and turning the dramatic play area into an airplane. So we got busy with helping while the children packed up the room for the big camping trip.




Such a fun day we all had!

Shanah Tova!

21 Sep

Hello Hummingbird families,

We just wanted to wish everyone a happy New Year! We had a short, but very sweet week at school. We did our first baking adventure with the kids help and made honey cake ! They were so excited to help pour in ingredients, stir, and of course, eat it afterwards! They were such wonderful little helpers. They had so much fun that we actually did it again today, this time was more of an experiment where we added more honey, cinnamon, and apple sauce to the recipe.  We spent a lot of time coloring in apple and Shofar pictures, ate apples and honey, and took our first trip up to the Library. It was a fantastic week and we hope you all enjoy the pictures!

Have a wonderful Rosh Hashanah and thank you for sharing your sweet children with us!

Shanah Tova,

Morah Julia, Moreh Eli, and Morah Ronisha


September 18th – 20th

20 Sep

Eagles’ Exploration and Learning

With our discussions of  Rosh Hashanah we have talked a lot about the foods that are eaten during this time, including apples.  This week we continued to have fun exploring apples; we counted, tasted and charted them.

Apple Counting

We provided charts with the numbers 1-5 and 1-10 written on them.  The children used Q-Tips and paint to dot on the corresponding number of ‘apples’.  Through this activity the children practice counting, one-to-one correspondence and fine motor skills.  The children enjoyed the Q-Tip painting, so in addition to counting apples they also made their own paintings.

Apple Tasting

Over the last few weeks we a have been drawing, painting and eating apples dipped in honey.  This week we tasted three different kinds of apples and the children decided which kind they liked the most.  We started by talking about our five senses and explored the apples using our sense of touch, smell, hearing, sight, and lastly, taste.  The children described what they felt, saw,  heard and smelled, and we recorded their answers.


The children then tasted three different apples; Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and Red Delicious and we asked them to describe how they tasted.  We gave them some time to think about the apples they tasted and then we created a bar graph with their preferences.  The winning apple……. Granny Smith!


We provided the children with open-ended materials such as yellow and black paper, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, glue and scissors, and asked them “What can you create with these materials?”  Many of the children immediately thought of bees and created a very diverse collection of the insects.  They also used the materials to make other unique creations.


P.E with Mr. A

This week Mr. A taught us how to safely use the climbing wall in the gym.


Making Dough for Round Challah

L ‘Shana Tovah!

Short, busy, fun week with the Chickadees

19 Sep

This week was short, but filled with Rosh Hashanah celebrations and fun in the classroom. The Chickadees tasted apples and honey, listened to Morah Gail blow the shofar, tried blowing the shofar (which was cleaned well between each Chickadee!), and painted with fall colors. We hope everyone has a wonderful Rosh Hashanah with their families and are excited to see everyone next week!

Grateful for sweet things!

18 Sep


Morah Gail: 3 days until Rosh Hashanah!

S.A.: It is the New Year.

E.N.: We do sweet things.


Morah Gail: As we think of the sweet things we can do, we can think of the sweet things Hashem has given us. I am thankful Hashem lead me to the Robins class and I am so thankful for all of you sweet children.



Tell me something sweet in your life that makes you thankful to Hashem.

N.F: My Emma and Abba.

B.S.W: Giving me to my family.

R.B.: Having my baby sister.

E.M.: Getting to play tag with S & N.

E.L: My sister.

K.A.: my sister visits me at lunch time.

H.R.: When my friends play with me.

S.A.: My Dad.

L.L.: My new house.

E.V: Playing with my friend M.B. on Shabbat

R.H: My big brother Y.H.

M.T.: Playing with my Sabba

E.N.: Going on an airplane with Zayde and visiting Disneyland

Morah Gail: We have so many sweet blessings.

Morah Gail: Hashem has blessed us with a beautiful world. On very clear days when I have the chance to see the mountains in our area, I feel so grateful. Let’s take a nature walk and see what beautiful things Hashem has for us.

Morah Gail: It is a pretty gray day. Why does Hashem send rain clouds?

B.S.W: To water the plants!

Morah Gail: Should we be sad about the gray clouds then?

Kids: No!

Morah Gail: What do you see?

M.T.: Moss!

S.A..: Trees!

E.M.: Plants!

E.L..: Birds!

Morah Gail: How do we feel when we see all the beauty in our world?

R.B. .: Good.

E.N.: Happy.

Morah Gail: When we are feeling happy, what do we feel like doing?

A.C..: Sweet kind things!

There was discussion about the fact that sometimes we may not feel like being sweet and kind.

When we choose to do something sweet and kind anyway, we end up feeling much happier.


We finished off the day with a group art project where we dipped apples cut in half into paint and then stamped them onto butcher paper. Remember: process, not product. The children began by simply stamping the apple onto the paper creating a lovely apple print…you could even see the star in the middle! This didn’t last long. “What would happen if…” began to take hold and the children were quickly rubbing the apples all over the paper, completely smearing over the lovely prints and had a great time doing it.


L’Shana Tova, Morah Gail & Zack



September 11th – 15th

18 Sep

Eagles’ Exploration and Learning

This week the children worked on completing their Rosh Hashana cards for their family members. Thank you all for getting names and addresses to us. They went out in the mail on Friday.

Each card included a cute photo of your child holding a bowl of apples, a still life drawing of apples that they created and then painted with water colors, and a special greeting that was dictated by the child.  It was heart warming to hear the special  things they wanted to say to their loved ones. Thoughts included “I miss you”, “I love you”, “Thank you for ___”, and “I like to play ___ with you”. Of course, they all ended with a Happy New Year or Shanah Tovah, whichever the child chose to include. Some children even signed their own names!

On Friday afternoon, we introduced classroom jobs. Each “Eagle Helper” waited eagerly to find out their assigned a job for next week. Jobs include leading or ending the line, holding the door, checking on clean up jobs around the room, turning on/off the lights, assisting with the calendar and the daily schedule, and helping to lead brachot at lunch and tefillah each morning. A few kids will be on “vacation” each week and couple will also be “substitutes” in case someone is absent or unable to complete their job at that time.

Judaics with Morah Rubissa

Rosh Hashana involves many exciting topics.  The students practiced the phrase ‘Shana Tova!’, ‘a good year.’ The students enjoyed contemplating what makes a situation feel good.

We discussed the many symbolic foods eaten on Rosh Hashana, from apples and honey to leeks and pomegranates.  The students printed with apples and pomegranates to decorate mats of the prayers recited on each of these special foods.  I hope you will be able to use them at your Rosh Hashanah meals.

We explored the topic of teshuva, repentance, as it connects to Rosh Hashana and everyone’s social emotional development. Acknowledging our mistakes, apologizing and striving to do better is a crucial life skill, learned in preschool and fine-tuned over our lives.

The students learned about the ritual of tashlich.  Tashlich is a prayer service held by a body of water on Rosh Hashana (or in the weeks that follow). The service involves the symbolic casting away of one’s sins.  The students enjoyed a version of this activity.

“Think about one averah, one thing you did this year you wish you hadn’t done,” Rubissa instructed.

“But I haven’t done anything wrong all year!” remarked one student.

“Me neither.  I’m always really good,” agreed another.

“Wow! So you always listen really well to everything your parents and teachers say, every time? And there was never ever a time you got angry and used your hands…” Rubissa asked.

“Oh! Maybe there were a few times…” Solemn nods all around the classroom.

The students then used markers to draw a picture of their averah, on a special circular paper (Circle is another theme. Ask your child to name a circular object related to Rosh Hashana.).  No one had to share their image, but many shared times they yelled at someone, didn’t listen well, or took their siblings things.

Then each child took their averah picture to the nearest body of water, the sensory table.  Each child placed their paper in the water and watched in amazement as their averah disappeared before their very eyes!  May all of our processes be so easy and evident!


Morah Jan read two books about Winnie the Pooh and his love for honey.  The children cut out their own honey pots and painted them with ‘honey’.

Story Drama

This week we had our first Story Drama class with Morah Anne Marie.  During this class the children get to use their imagination while they try to solve a “really big problem” from a story book.  This week the children had to solve the problem of how to get King Bidgood out of the bathtub from the book “King Bidgood’s in the Bathtub” by Audrey Wood.