Sunday, October 3

Preschool Parsha - Bereshit

With a raucous joyous Simchat Torah on Thursday evening, we started the Torah over again.  Froggy's Hebrew birthday is Shmeni Atzeret and we celebrate with a special dinner at the end of that solemn day so we are already in a festive mode when we chant Maariv at Shul.  One year soon, I hope to bring Froggy to a celebration that actually takes the Hakafot out into the streets.  Meanwhile we have tons of fun singing and dancing with the Torah at our synagogue.
 
After two years of using the same texts for our weekly parsha study, I decided to shake things up this year.  If we were the typical stair-step family, we would have welcomed a new young into Torah study this year and Froggy would move to reading My First Parsha Reader to the younger sibling. I have encouraged Froggy to read it to her dolls since there is no sibling.

For Froggy, we are doing a very creative multi-media approach this year.  For the core we are using Reading Genesis by Roberta Osser Baum.  This book is certainly not preschool level.  It is used in our Religious School for 4th grade.  We will use it for several years as we did My First Parsha Reader.   I like it because it gives us a chance to examine the actual text of the parsha in Hebrew in a manner that is on par with my skills.
For the fun multi-media ideas we are using Morah Morah Teach Me Torah.   I love this book.  It has ideas for bringing the parsha to life with all the senses.  It is designed to be used at a Jewish preschool and has cross-curriculum ideas for each parsha.

There is so much story in this first parsha that we cannot really cover it all.  We are breaking down the focus.  The first half of the week we will focus on the Garden of Eden and the lessons.  From Reading Genesis "Having committed a wrong, Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the serpent.  But G-d punished all three." We must accept responsibility for our mistakes.  To truly do Teshuva we must first admit our mistakes.  As Maria sings in one of our favorite musicals The Sound of Music, "I will face my mistakes without defiance."

During the second half of the week we will focus on Cain and Abel.  We are reading Cain and Abel: Finding The Fruits of Peace. The lesson from Cain is a harsh one of jealousy.  We will focus on Cain becoming a wanderer and the first of the nomads we are studying in history.

Throughout we will use the songs below to learn the order of the days of Creation.We will make a banner showing each day of creation.  We will have two fun Bereshit snacks, black and white cookies representing day one and a baked apple snack with gummie snake for the Garden of Eden. 

For this parsha, we have two new songs to sing. We are singing a Hebrew Days of the week song which works wonderfully with our calendar study as well as song about creation to the tune of "Frere Jacques"

(Each line is echoed)
In the beginning
Bereshit
Hashem made the whole world
It was good!

Hashem created night and day
That was on the first day.  It was good.
Hashem created sky and clouds
That was on the second day.  It was good.
hashem created Land and plants
That was on the third day.  It was good.
Hashem created Sun moon and stars.
That was on the fourth day. It was good.
Hashem created birds and fish
That was on the fifth day. It was good.
Hashem created Adam and Eve
That was on the sixth day.  It was good
The Hashem rested
M'nuchah
That was on the seventh day. Tov Me'od.
(repeat first four lines)

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