Weeks of Nov. 23 and 30–Jewish Studies ט & Voicethread

 - by Morah Rachel

We  are SOOOO thankful for our amazing students and their families in Kitah Alef.  We aren’t just giving thanks on Thanksgiving but every day!!  מודה אני Modeh Anee!!

We look forward to VIP day on Tuesday and hope you’ll dance with us!

Enjoy the holiday with family and friends!

Our newest letter is:   and our newest vowels are ..   eh


ט tet

טבח  tabach   chef

אוטו oto  automobile

טלויזיה televisia  television

טוסט toast  toast

טוב tov good for boy

טובה tovah  for girl

It’s a great story about a crazy chef who loves cars!!!  FUN!!

Every week a new portion in the Torah is read.  These 2 weeks the  פרשת השבוע  Parshat HaShavuah portions  of the week are:

Then…..  Vayeshev וישב     First….   Vayishlach    וישלח

We learn about Yaakov and his name change to Yisrael and then about  Yosef and the amazing technicolor dream coat!!!

Chanukah!!! Listen for the songs!!! We LOVE singing!!  SEE NOTE BELOW

Rabbi Tilman shared a lesson with us about tefillin and mezzuzah after we sang the Shema and V’ahavta.  Todah!!  Can you see the letter Shin on both the Rabbi’s hand  and on the mezuzah on our door?




 And now introducing on your own computer at home, etc.:   


“Dear Kitah Alef Parents,

We are excited to introduce the online program VOICETHREAD (Kol Kesher).  VOICE THREAD is an amazing new learning tool, which allows for conversations around images and for Hebrew to be brought into every home.

Each student has been set up with his/her own account and we are asking parents to help sign in their child at VOICE THREAD. The instructions will follow….”   Click on the following to be invited!


On Friday, 11/20, we sent more of this letter explaining about Voicethread and the  reading/singing assignment for Kitah Alef.  It also gives you your child’s password.!  These are the correct usernames and passwords!!   The homework is just to listen to the songs and point to the words.  We will practice the whole process at school so the children will be experienced.  Thanks for joining us in this new endeavor!!!  It will get better and better as we all get used to it!!  (Right now there are 3 songs to sing along…. Tet and 2 Chanukah songs. More to follow!!)

Ulichnie’s Update November 20th

 - by erinulichnie

This week in reading and writing, we have continued nonfiction.  We read an ebook about robots.  After reading it, students completed a descriptive and creative writing piece about their robots they created in art.  We also read some nonfiction about pilgrims and what it was like to be a pilgrim boy and girl.  We also wrote about what it would be like to be a pilgrim child.  We also read a book about being thankful and created a class book.  I hope to send one home with each student next week after it is completed.  We even got to complete 2 fun crafts to accompany our writing.  For spelling, we had words that end with the long i sound.  We will not have a spelling list or spelling homework next week.

In math, we have been learning about shapes.  Students learned about circles, squares, rectangles, triangles, hexagons, rhombuses, and trapezoids.  We discussed how many sides and corners are on each shape.  Students used shapes to make pictures and to create symmetrical designs.  They loved these hands on lessons.

We were able to the science lab this week with Mrs. Jaffa.  Students learned about how the sun makes shadows and how shadows can change.  Students traced their shadows with chalk outside in the courtyard and made a hypotheses.  Then we returned to measure them later in the day.  We discovered they moved do to the sun’s position and were shorter.

For social studies, we learned about pilgrims and Thanksgiving.

Here are a few more fun pictures from this week.  It was fun and productive!  Don’t forget VIP day on Tuesday.

Ulichnie’s Update November 15

 - by erinulichnie

Last week in reading, we worked hard at making predictions and reading nonfiction.  Our class is doing great spending time reading during our daily 5 each day.  We also reviewed the magic e this week.  So far we have learned about long a, long i, and long o words with the silent e.

In writing, students are continuing to create nonfiction books.  Students are working to include punctuation, capitalization, and features of nonfiction text in their books.  They really love to write!

Students are doing a great job reading their AR books and taking comprehension quizzes on our ipads.  I will be sending home a report on the scores soon.  Don’t forget, quiz day will be Tuesday or Wednesday each week.

For math this week, we reviewed addition and subtraction by playing games.  Students played a sum game with a partner, subtraction memory, and a game called addition scoot.  These are all ways to have students review addition and subtraction in a fun, hands on approach.  We also completed some cool hidden picture sheets.  We celebrated the 50th day of school on Friday and had some fun with the number 50.

In social studies, student learned about Veteran’s Day.  We read The Wall, by Eve Bunting, a book about the Vietnam Veteran’s Wall.  I brought in my grandfather’s medals from WWII, and we discussed those honors.  In addition, students watched a video that explained the history of Veteran’s Day.

My grandfather's WWII medals for Veteran's Day

My grandfather’s WWII medals for Veteran’s Day

Upcoming Events:

VIP Day is Tuesday, November 24.  Please come with friends and family!  We will be working on a great art project and math activity in the classroom.

Thanksgiving break is Wednesday the 25-27.

Our first field trip to Ft. Menendez will be December 9.  There will be more information soon.

Please let me know if you need anything!  Have a great week!

Mrs. Ulichnie


Week of Nov. 15–Jewish Studies

 - by Morah Rachel

The lovely ladies that begin with the letter ח chet:

חנה חוה חביבה    ומורה חנה  Chana, Chava, Chaviva and Morah Chana!!


We are enjoying the story about the new baby and what happens when he turns 8 days old!! (If you need the vocabulary words from this story, please check out the  blog post from the week of  November 2.)

So much fun with this letter.…… We got to pray  on a beautiful day outside  בחוץ BaChutz



פרשת השבוע ויצא Parshat HaShavua Vayetze This week’s Torah portion is Vayetze and is about יעקב   Ya-akov Jacob and  his family which includes….

רחל  Rachel!!!

Before we know it, a favorite holiday will be here….

חנוכה Chanukah!!!!

חנוכה שמח Chanukah Sameach Happy Chanukah!!

We are learning lots in our חנוכה שמח  Chanukah Sameach  Happy Chanukah workbook.   Eventually, just ask any of us which is the correct way to light the  חנוכיה Chanukiya and we will show you  how!!

We are learning words for the holiday :

יהודים Yehudim  Jews

יונים  Yevanim  Syrian Greeks

בית המקדש  Bet HaMikdash  The Holy Temple

אסור  asoor   forbidden

פסל  pesel   idol

נס נסים  nes,  nisim    miracle (s)

שמן  shemen   oil

חנוכיה   Chanukiyah    Chanukah menorah 9 branched candleholder

סביבון  sevivon    dreidelלביבות   levivot   latkes

ספגניות  sufganiyot    jelly donuts

Coming soon……..

Our new letter is ט Tet!   We will love reading this story about the chef and his kitchen and his love for cars!

טבח tabach    chef

אוטו  Oto   automobile

טלויזיה  televeziya  Television

טוסט  toast

טוב tov   good (masculine singular)

טובה  tovah   good  (feminine singular)


Ulichnie’s Update November 9th

 - by erinulichnie

We have been super busy this week!  For spelling and word work, we have been working with long i words.  We have also learned about the main idea of a story.  Students learned a song to help them remember.  Ask your child if he or she remembers the song.  We have had several read alouds including, Pete the Cat books, Fly Guy, and various nonfiction books.   Our AR quiz day will be on Tuesday, so please make sure your kiddo has read their AR book 2 or 3 times by then.

In writing, we are continuing to make nonfiction books or teaching books.  Students are writing about topics they are experts on, such as: Ninja Turtles, cheetahs, baseball, jewelry making, and super heroes.   I have been really impressed!

In math this week, our class has worked hard on many topics.  We focused on counting back, comparing numbers, sequencing numbers, making 10 strategy for addition, and finally adding and subtracting 2 digit and 1 digit numbers.  We also had a guesstimation jar lesson.  The jar was full of plastic insects.  We estimated and counted.  There were 105 bugs!  Students’ estimations were so much better this week.  Next week, the jar will start going home for students to fill and bring to school.  I am excited to see what they decide to bring.  We also had a number writing assessment.

We started learning about Veteran’s Day for social studies.  We will continue discussing this next week.  I learned that we have many veterans in our first grade families.  Thank you for your service, veteran moms and dads!

I look forward to parent teacher conferences on Monday.  You will get your child’s report card then.

Week of November 9–Jewish Studies

 - by Morah Rachel


Hope to see y’all at conferences this Monday!!!




Well…. we are taking our time in Ariyot so that we can be sure we “get” all the new letters and vowels.   Our  newest letter is zayin

ז     See above how we used Twizzlers to show the difference between  zayin and vav.

Our friend  זאב  Ze’ev is so proud that his name starts with this letter!!!

We  enjoyed the story about the little goose….. and we must remember to read every night… Hebrew– from right to left!!! We are moving ahead with the letter  ח Chet…. for more info on this letter, see last week’s post.

Thanks to Ms. Hernandez for helping us record our Fall Hebrew reading.  Check us out on our own individual blogs!!

We will begin this week learning about  חנכה Chanukah….. yes, it’s coming soon!!  Listen for great songs and fun!!

פרשת השבוע תולדות Parshat HaShavua Toldot…. This week’s Torah portion is about twins!!!

Week of November 2–Jewish Studies ח

 - by Morah Rachel

Thanks for returning the yellow siddurim and keep sending in those photographs !!  It is a joy for the students to see the pictures corresponding to the prayer.

אריאות  Ariyot   We learn a new letter:

ח  Chet    (Clear your throat!!)  like in the word Chanukah!!  חנוכה

Whose name begins with this letter????

מורה     חנה  our very own Morah   CHANA!!    AND  others……

(picture forthcoming)

Some other words that we learn  are:

אח  ach  brother

אחות achot  sister

חגיגה  chagigah   celebration   (our חגיגת הסידור Chagigat HaSiddur  Celebration of us getting our new Shabbat prayerbooks  is coming soon!)

חדש  chadash   new (for a boy)

חדשה  chadasha  new (for a girl)

משפחה  mishpacha family

The story this week tells us about a wonderful event ….

ברית מילה  brit milah  (covenant of circumcision— bris).

תפילות  Tefilot  Prayers  We are moving forward with many prayers like ואהבת  V’Ahavta  “And you shall love”  which is the paragraph after the Shema.

פרשת השבוע חיי שרה Parshat  HaShavua The portion in the Torah this week is  bitsela05-breishit

Chayei Sarah. The life (& death) of Sarah.

Ulichnie’s Update October 30th

 - by erinulichnie

This week in reading, we worked on reading nonfiction and discussed the features of nonfiction books.  We learned about how authors include charts, an index, a glossary, photographs, maps, captions, highlighted and bold print, and close-ups to help the reader understand the text better.  Our spelling list included long ‘a’ words.  We learned how the “magic e” sprinkles fairy dust on the ‘a’ and makes it say its name, like in the word late.  Writers learned about writing nonfiction this week.  We picked topics that we are experts on.  Then we wrote to teach other about the topic.  Some children wrote about animals, sports, or people.  AR is going well – students are learning to use the iPad to take a comprehension quiz.

In math this week, we learned about position, direction, and ordinal numbers.  We also had a fun hands on measuring lesson measuring gourds.  Students made predictions and then measured length and weight.  We also tested to see if the gourd would sink or float in water.  Ask your child what facts we learned about gourds!  We also introduced place value with our calendar math lesson.  We are already on the 40th day of school.  Wow!

We also had a science video on gravity on Friday.

Have a great week! Please let me know if you need anything.  Conferences are coming up November 9th.  You will get your child’s report card at your conference.  Thanks for signing up!

Ulichnie’s Update October 26th

 - by erinulichnie

Last week in reading, we read several Jan Brett books.  Students responded to our reading by writing about the story’s characters and retelling the beginning, middle, and end of the story.  We also worked on our very first reader’s theater, where students acted out the book The Umbrella.  We have also been reading lots of poetry.  Students have started checking out AR books.  They get one AR book and one free choice book when we go to the library.  After students have read the AR book a few times, they can take a comprehension quiz in class to see how well they understand what they have read.  Please remember, library is on Wednesday.

Author study on Jan Brett

Author study on Jan Brett

Students should all have a new oral reading post on their student blogs.  This will show what their oral reading was like for the first quarter.  I  look forward to seeing lots of growth through the year.  We are also adding a new writing post this week, because we are wrapping up personal narrative writing.  Students will pick the best piece from our unit to publish on their student blog.  Our next writing unit will be writing nonfiction.

In math, we wrapped up our unit on addition and subtraction by reviewing number bonds, fact families, and story problems.  Students created their own subtraction story problems, and then, we solved each other’s problems.  On Friday, we had our first “guesstimation jar” lesson.  Students ask questions to determine the contents of the guesstimation jar.  After they figure out what is inside, they estimate how many are in the jar.  Finally, we count and group into groups of ten.  This week we had 125 Hershey’s Kisses in the jar.  We then decided how many each student should get to make it fair.  They had a ton of fun and got to eat 8 Kisses.


Week of October 26–Jewish Studies ז

 - by Morah Rachel

REMINDER****** HaSiddur Sheli My Prayerbook (yellow 3 ring) must be returned to school on Tuesday, 10/27 with or without photos!!  You can continue taking photos, labelling them for us to attach to their prayerbook, and send them in to our class  Todah!.

We are learning the letter  ו vav in our second Ariyot book… and must underscore how important it is to review this with your child. It is confusing!  FYI  — the letter vav can be a letter AND  a vowel.  It makes the sound of O when it has a dot Over its head like in the word  שלום Shalom.

ז the letter Zayin is next with words like:

אוז Avaz   a male goose

אוזה  avazah   a female goose

אוזון  avazone  a baby goose

זז  zaz  moves for a boy

זזה   zazah  moves for a girl

זהב  zahav   gold

We meet the cutest little goose in this story ….

זוזו האוזון   Zozo HaAvazone   Zozo the baby goose.

Enjoy reading and re-reading this story with your child.  Act out the parts…. it’s fun!

פרשת השבוע  Parshat HaShavua    Portion of the Week

תורה  TORAH  5 Books of Moses

As we explained before, we have a new workbook for Torah portions.  Each week we discuss the portion and  cut, glue and color 2 pages relating to the portion.  It is ok if the whole page is not colored.  We are looking for the important elements in the portion to be colored. Most of this work should be completed during class time on Fridays, so you probably won’t see the workbook at home.  However, if more time is needed (or wanted), the workbook can go home to be returned ASAP!!

This coming week’s portion is וירא Vayera and we will meet Isaac…. named for the laughter that Sarah laughed!!! And learn about the mitzvot of Hospitality and Visiting the Sick.