We welcome children from traditional, interfaith, LGBTQ, single and other families.

609-730-1500

learn@jecnj.org

at Har Sinai Temple
2421 Pennington Road
Pennington, NJ 08534

Parent Updates - Jewish Education Connection

Please check here often for news and updated information for parents!

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Give Generously To Har Sinai’s 2018 High Holiday Appeal

Please click HERE to read a message from Temple President, Alan Kline, to find out more about why your contribution is especially important this year.

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May 5, 2019

This week is Yom Ha’Atzmaut, so 1st grade did a lot of talking about Israel! They sang about Israel in music, and read a book about Israel, too!

2nd grade

4 and 5th grade spent today preparing for their class service, which is next Friday!

6th grade had their PACT program, where they discussed the Torah, as well as students’ upcoming Bar/Bat Mitzvahs.

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April 28, 2019

1st grade discussed how Passover was celebrated in their homes this year. They continued to review their letters, and worked on a fun spring craft!

Today in class, 2nd grade learned about the holy places and things around us including the Torah, the synagogue, and Tzitzit. We also wrote our Hebrew names on ceramic tiles and decorated them. In music, we sang about Yom Ha’atzmaut!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4-6th grade is hard at work preparing for their class service, which is coming up in a few weeks, on May 17th! They began to review the songs that will be in the service, and practiced their individual parts!

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April 21, 2019

Chag Sameach, Happy Passover!

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April 14, 2019

Today, K-6 spent the morning preparing for our model Seder. From 10:30 until the end of the day, we held our model Seder and every grade played a role. 6th grade led us in prayer, 4th and 5th grade helped us learn about The Four Children, and 1st and 2nd grade acted out the story of Passover!

Big thank you to Rabbi Pollack and Cantor Green for leading our Seder, Susan Sacks for the wonderful music, Charoset, and desserts, and to our parents for contributing materials so everyone could make their own Seder plates.

 

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April 7, 2019

First grade spent today rehearsing for the Model Seder with 2nd grade. They also made their very own Passover book and went over the story of Passover.

2nd grade rehearsed the Passover story (with props!). It was fun to do some acting. They have also been growing their Mitzvah tree! Each week every student adds a leaf with a good deed they did.4th and 5th grade prepared for Passover and their class service with 6th grade. They reviewed the Passover Hagaddah and Passover songs.

6th grade did individual Hebrew review with Ms. Krause and spent time in music preparing for Passover and their class service with 4th and 5th grade. They also had the chance to spend some time outside in the beautiful weather!

Hebrew High split up today with the 10th grade working with Gesher LeKesher. The morning started with a parent information session for 10th grade parents!

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March 31, 2019

First grade reviewed their letters and began talking about the story of Passover. They also sang Passover songs in music.

Today, 2nd grade learned about the Passover story and the Ten Plagues. They will be acting these out during the Model Seder. 2nd grade is also moving forward wonderfully with their letters and vowels.

4th and 5th grade reviewed for their class service, and 6th grade wrote letters to Lois Lowry, the author of Number the Stars, and continued reading L’Cha Dodi.

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March 24, 2019

Today was our Purim Carnival, which was so much fun!

Thank you to Casey Faiman and Men’s Club members Ariel Schwartz and Gregg Rapport for all of their work!

Thank you to our Hebrew High volunteers, Charlotte Goodman, Ari Weiss, and Naomi Weiss for all of their help with our games and setup.

(if anyone has any photos, please e-mail them to me at kaylak.hst@gmail.com!)

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March 22, 2019

Mazel Tov and a huge Congratulations to the cast and crew of this year’s Purim Shpiel, My Fair Meydel!

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March 17, 2019

Happy Purim!

This week in Sunday school, we made yummy Hamantaschen in preparation of Purim, which will begin on Wednesday evening!

Our 1st and 2nd grade had a fun recess outdoors, enjoying the very nice weather! They also made Haman Rashanim, or noisemakers.

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March 10, 2019

Happy Daylight Savings! We have officially jumped our clocks forward for extra sunlight!

1st grade talked about their Havdalah service, and then learned the aa and ee vowels, and combined them with the letters they already know.

2nd grade started to learn about Purim! They watched a video and read a story, along with supplementing with songs in music. Their review of letters and vowels is going wonderfully and the kids are excited to learn how to read full words and sentences next year!

4th, 5th, and 6th grade are continuing on with Hebrew, Purim, and Jewish History!

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March 9, 2019

Our K/1/2 Havdalah was a great success! We had a wonderful service, looked at the “stars”, made beautiful lanterns, and ate half-moon cookies!

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March 3, 2019

Today, K/1 reviewed Resh and Dalet. They each made a Degel (flag)!

2nd grade split up into pairs and worked on an Israel project. Each set of partners had their own area to research, with some examples being Jerusalem and Eilat. In music they prepared for our upcoming havdallah service!

4/5th grade continued with prayers, Hebrew, and Jewish History.

6th grade continued to discuss the Holocaust and famous Jews throughout history!

Hebrew High met with Gesher Le Kesher today.

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February 24, 2019

Today, K/1 learned the letters Resh and Dalet.

2nd Grade learned about the different places in Israel including Jerusalem, Masada and the Dead Sea. They also successfully completed a pretty challenging Hebrew worksheet!

4/5/6 combined today, and they talked about Jewish History and practiced their Hebrew.

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February 17, 2019

Happy Presidents’ Day Weekend!

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February 10, 2019

Today, K/1 reviewed the letter Zion, and practiced a few words that start with Zion, like Zebra (zebra), Olive (zayit), and Gold (zahav)! They also talked about the Torah portion T’ruma, and the making of the Tabernacle.

2nd grade learned the difference between letters Caf and Chaf. They also did a popsicle stick regarding Israel that we will finish next time, which is also when they will be starting their Israel unit! In music class, they learned the Hebrew words for all family members and got to act them out too!

4/5th grade continued reading Wonder and discussing Jewish History.

6th grade continues to dive into the Holocaust, and began to discuss Jews we see in all fields, from comics to science and more!

Hebrew High reviewed a timeline of Judaism in the 19th Century to today. They also discussed various Theisms, reflective writing prompts, and friendship and other relationships in our lives.

 

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February 3, 2019

K/1 worked on the songs and readings for leading the service this Friday.

Today, 2nd grade we finished practicing our songs and readings for Friday’s service. We also drew pictures of what T’rumah (this week’s parsha) meant to us. Lastly, we reviewed Chet/Tet and moved on to Yud!

The 4/5th grade PACT program on the Menorah was very successful!

6th grade had a food party today, and made Challah, Hamentaschen, and Sufganiyot!

 

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January 27, 2019

We started our morning with a prayer service led by Cantor Green.

Today in 2nd grade we were combined with 1st grade. We learned about “Shalom Bayit” which is a concept that means peace in the home. We are also in the midst of practice for our Shabbat service which is coming up soon!

4th and 5th continued practicing Hebrew, talking about Jewish History, and reading Wonder.

6th grade is working on the Haftarah Blessings. They discussed Jewish History and continued discussing the Holocaust in depth. They tackled questions such as: How did Hitler carry out his plan to eliminate the Jews of Europe? What was the response of Jews in europe and around the world? How did Hitler’s “final solution” change world Jewry forever? What lessons can we learn from the Holocaust?
They continued to make connections with the book they are reading, “Number the Stars”!

Hebrew High met with Gesher LeKesher today!

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January 20, 2019

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day!

Thank you to everyone who donated shoes to Soles4Souls. Today, we had a very successful day packing and loading the shoes for donation. Between Har Sinai Temple and the Pennington Presbyterian Church, we were able to donate 820 pairs of shoes! Some of these shoes will be donated directly to those in need. Others will be sold to micro-enterprise programs, where people in developing countries can begin their own businesses selling shoes.

 x

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January 13, 2019

1st grade reviewed their letters once again, and then discussed Tu B’Shevat and made a tree craft prior to our Tu B’Shevat Seder!

2nd grade was with Ms. Goldstein again today. They learned the letter Tet!

4th and 5th grade continued to read Wonder and practice their Hebrew.

6th grade finished Number the Stars and are looking ahead into a project surrounding the Holocaust and Jews during the Second World War.

The whole school ended the day with a fun Tu B’Shevat Seder where we celebrated the New Year of the Trees. We sang many songs about trees with Mrs. Sacks, and tried many different fruits including grapes, rasins, dates, figs, and oranges. We also mixed our white and red grape juices to represent the seasons.

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A REVIEW OF SNOW DAY PROCEDURE:
In the event of inclement weather, we will make a decision regarding school closing no later than 7:30AM. You will receive an e-mail from me (kaylak.hst@gmail.com), and this will be posted on the calendar and parent update pages of the website.
Safety is our greatest concern, and we ask you to use your best judgement in the event that we decide not to close the school.

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January 6, 2019

Happy New Year!

1st grade reviewed all the letters they have learned so far. Then, they learned Caf and Chaf!

2nd grade had a substitute teacher, Ms. Goldstein. They learned the letter Chet and played Hebrew games!

4th and 5th grade continued to learn Jewish History, practice Hebrew, and read Wonder!

6th grade began to dive into a meaningful discussion about the Holocaust, and talked about how they might behave if they were various characters in the book, Number the Stars.

 

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December 23, 2018 – December 30, 2018

No JEC. Happy Winter Break!

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December 16, 2018

1st grade reviewed Samach and Yud and learned the letters Pay and Fay!

2nd grade learned about Tikun Olam and made Tzedakah boxes as an example of a Mitzvah you can do!

4th and 5th grade worked on their prayers, Jewish History, and continued to read Wonder.

6th grade practiced Pay and Fay and continued to practice Hebrew reading. We continued our Jewish history book and read chapter 9 in Number the Stars.

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December 9, 2018

Today in 1st grade we continued talking about Chanukah. We learnred the letter “Samach”, which starts the words Sefer, Sevivon, and Simcha. We made our very own making a picture Sefer (book), and read a book about a Soos (horse)!

Today in 2nd grade, we learned the hebrew letter Hay. We also made study sheets with all the vowels on them for review at home throughout the weeks when we don’t have Hebrew school! In music, we sang more songs about Chanukah. Slowly but surely we are expanding our mitzvah tree on the bulletin board in the classroom. Each class we all add a leaf that has a mitzvah on it that we did at some point the prior week. At the end of class, we had a fun party because we had several birthdays!

4th and 5th grade spent the day with Rabbi Pollack and had fun talking about Chanukah.

6th grade practiced Hebrew, continued to study Jewish history, and read chapter 8 in Number the Stars.

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December 2, 2018

Today’s Chanukah Sing Along, Crafts, Latke-making and Party was a huge success! Thank you to all of the parents who helped out 🙂

Below are some photos from today! Also, see our Facebook Page to see the rest of the photos!

     

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November 25, 2018

No School – Happy Thanksgiving!

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November 18, 2018

Today, K/1 learned about the letter Yud. We discussed words with the letter Yud including the color green – yarok, building – binyan, and children – yeladim. We also traced our yad (hand) and colored them yarok (green)!

2nd Grade learned all the vowels in the Hebrew alphabet. We had fun trying to spell and read different simple words. In music we sang songs about Chanukah. For our craft this week, we made “Todah” cards which is the Hebrew word for thanks (in the spirit of Thanksgiving). Inside them, we wrote about what we are all thankful for!

4th and 5th grade continued reading Wonder and learning about Jewish History.

6th grade disussed Confirmation, Jewish History, and continued reading Number the Stars.

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November 11, 2018

Today, K/1 talked about Ahava, love, and its importance in Judaism. We read a story about Ahava, and learned about the letters aleph, hay, and vet.

In 2nd grade we continued to discuss Shabbat and worked on our letters! We tried out mud from the Dead Sea and wrote our names in Hebrew!

In 4th and 5th grade, we had a substitute teacher, Mrs. Schwartz! We continued reading Wonder, learning prayers, and learning Jewish History!

In 6th grade, we talked about Mitzvahs and how we can work on fulfilling them. We continued reading Number the Stars and talked about Judaism, American style.

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November 9, 2018

We had such a lovely JEC Learning Shabbat Service this evening! It was so nice to have Cantor Green, Mrs. Sacks, and the rabbi lead us in prayer, songs, and learning. Check out this video, where we learned more about the Amidah!

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November 4, 2018

In K/1/2, we had our PACT (parents and children together) program! Rabbi Pollack introduced us to the mezuzah, and then we made our very own. Later, we  read a story and sang songs about the mezuzah, and discussed its meaning. We also welcomed in our new K/1 teacher, Ms. Jacobs!

 

In 6th grade, we practiced our Hebrew. We talked about what it means to have a Bar or Bat Mitzvah. We talked more about Jewish History, and then continued reading Number the Stars. We are up to chapter 5 now!

In Hebrew High, we had a discussion on antisemitism. We looked at some of these quotes on antisemitism.

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November 2, 2018

THANK YOU to the hundreds who came out for our service in solidarity with the Pittsburgh Jewish community and those slain last week. Thank you to all of those from local churches, mosques, and synagogues who came out to support the Jewish community.

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October 28, 2018

In K/1/2, we rehearsed the candle, wine, and challah blessings to prepare for the service that we will be having this year. We learned Daled, the 4th letter of the Hebrew alphabet. The kids now have a solid understanding of vowels and have begun to read Hebrew words! In music we sang songs about the mezuzah, which we will be learning more about during the PACT  program next week!

In 6th grade, we discussed Jewish values and Jewish history. We continued through chapter 4 in Number the Stars. We also completed a bulletin board showcasing the strength and love in the Jewish community. We surrounded our bulletin board with paper chains

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October 27, 2018

In light of the recent tragic shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA, the Hopewell police department will station a patrol car at the Temple at the start of the school session tomorrow and during dismissal. Between 9 and noon, the patrol car will be making frequent patrols of the school.

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

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October 21, 2018

In K/1/2, we started growing our Mitzvah tree. On the bulletin board in our classroom, we have a tree trunk and each week each of the students adds a leaf. On the leaf they write a Mitzvah they did that week. Then we learned about Shabbat and the three most important parts of it: candles, challah, and wine/grape juice. We watched two educational videos about Shabbat too! Today we also introduced the topic of Hebrew vowels, and the students were able to read very basic Hebrew words.

In 4/5/6, we played Jeopardy with Jewish themes!

In 4th and 5th grade, we continued learning Jewish History reading Wonder.

In 6th grade, we continued reading and discussing Number the Stars, and connecting the story told with what we know of the Holocaust. We also continued learning the V’Ahavta!

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October 19, 2018

Thank you for all who came out to our first JEC Learning Shabbat! Look at this video we watched on the service’s central prayer, the Shema!

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October 14, 2018

Exciting general update: We are very excited to announce that technology has arrived! Starting next week, each class will be getting a tablet to use for multi-media content. Stay tuned to see how our tablets are utilized in the classroom!

Today, the Pre-K, 1st, and 2nd grade read a story, “The Boy Who Stuck Out His Tongue: A Yiddish Folk Tale”. We talked about Noah and the Ark, and sang songs in music with Mrs. Sacks about Noah. We reviewed the first two letters in the Hebrew Alphabet: Alef and Bet!

In 6th Grade, we began the morning learning these important Hebrew Words:

6th Grade continued to practice their Hebrew. We also looked at last week’s homework and discussed who we were named after, and how it relates to what we read in our textbook and last week’s discussion on Baby Naming. We talked about another Jewish life event, consecration. We continued learning about Jewish History, and began reading Lois Lowry’s “Number the Stars”. We will continue to connect this book to our curriculum of Jewish immigration.

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October 7, 2018

Today, our 1st and 2nd graders learned about 3 main things: Israel, Creation, and Noah’s Ark. We made our own Israeli flags and learned fun facts about Israel. We learned about what G-d created on every day by singing songs with Mrs. Sacks. We also read a book about Noah’s Ark. Today we learned the second letter of the Hebrew alphabet which is Bet!

4th and 5th grade signed their “Big 5” Classroom Constitution. We finished our Hebrew Diagnostic, and continued reading and discussing the book, “Wonder”. We also began learning about Jewish History!

6th grade began the morning thinking critically, using Jewish ethics and values regarding breaking the Sabbath laws to help someone in need. We asked ourselves, “Mah La’Asot – What Should I Do?” Next, we evaluated how to practice Hebrew based on different learning needs and levels of current knowledge. We color coded our individual prayers for review. We then moved on to Jewish History and discussed the possible challenges that one could expect when migrating to a new place, and the traditions that we practice. We looked at each other’s Tzedakah billboards and hung them up in our room. Lastly, we continued with Jewish Lifecycle events and talked about Baby Naming.

We welcomed our Hebrew High today with bagels and a discussion on free will! Our 7th/8th graders went to the sanctuary to meet with students from Gester LeKesher, a Jewish youth educational group.

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September 30, 2018: Little Shovavim!

We had a very successful first Little Shovavim class. We made miniature Torahs, read stories, sang with Mrs. Sacks, and spent time making Torah-themed snacks in our Sukkah! (click on a picture below to enlarge)

 

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September 30, 2018

Today was a very busy day in Sunday School!

The 2nd Grade made mini Torahs from construction paper and toothpicks. We then wrote their English or Hebrew names inside the scroll with a quill and ink! This was to prepare for Simchat Torah, which means joy/happy Torah.

The 4th and 5th grades discussed Sukkot and Simchat Torah, created our Class Constitution, began our Hebrew Diagnostic Assessments, and began reading the book “Wonder” by R.J. Palacio.

The 6th Grade also completed our Hebrew Diagnostic Assessments and discussed the V’Ahavta. We also began discussing the history of the Jewish people and Jewish lifecycle events.

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September 28, 2018

Thank you so much to everyone who came out for our Pizza, Consecration, Simchat Torah celebration, Klezmer Band, and Sundaes in the Sukkah! It was such a wonderful evening! (click on a picture to enlarge)

Welcome to the JEC and Har Sinai family Nathan, Jason, Haley, Miles, Eli, Ariel, and Jillian!

Second Grade Songs and Sukkot Celebrations!

  

Consecration!

Simchat Torah!

Sundaes in the Sukkah!

 

After the service… Ariel put her new mini Torah to good use at home!

 

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September 23, 2018

We had a wonderful first day of school today!

Big THANK YOU to Susan Sacks, Cantor Green, Rabbi Pollack, and all of our teachers for making today such a success.

Special thanks to Casey Faiman and the Men’s Club for accommodating the weather with a wonderful indoor BBQ.

And of course, we appreciate everything that Mike and Robyn do for our religious school and the temple.

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September 14, 2018

SUNDAY SCHOOL CANCELLED, 9/16/18.
The electric company has to lay a new electrical cable, and they are only available to do so Sunday morning. Therefore, we will have no power.

The same schedule will be in effect for the following Sunday, September 23, 2018, including the Selichot service:
9:00 AM: Welcome, songs, and greetings in the sanctuary

9:30 AM: Students attend class. Parents are welcomed by Rabbi Pollack, receive a curriculum overview, and hear from various representatives of the temple.
10:15 AM: Parents “Meet and Greet”
11:15 AM: School-wide Selichot service in the sanctuary
12:00PM: Men’s Club Annual BBQ

HEBREW HIGH IS CANCELLED for September 23, and will resume on October 7.
Thank you so much for your understanding. See you on September 23!

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September 5, 2018

The JEC teachers are getting excited for the Religious School year! Our classrooms are set up and we are so excited to see you soon!

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August/September 2018
Hello Parents! Below is important information for the upcoming Religious School Year:

  • If you have not already, please register your child for Sunday School HERE!
  • Fill out the 2018/19 Photo Release Form by clicking HERE.
  • The first day of school for K-6 is September 16th. The flyer can be found HERE. A tentative schedule is below:
    • 9:00 AM: Welcome, songs, and greetings in the sanctuary
      9:30 AM: Students attend class. Parents are welcomed by Rabbi Pollack, receive a curriculum overview, and hear from various representatives of the temple.
      10:15 AM: Parents “Meet and Greet”
      11:15 AM: School-wide Selichot service in the sanctuary
      12:00PM: Men’s Club Annual BBQ
  • A tentative calendar for the year can be found HERE. Please be mindful that our new curriculum includes two extra religious school dates in June. The Hebrew High calendar can be found HERE.
  • Please take a more in-depth look at our updated curriculum by clicking HERE.
  • A Welcome Letter from Rabbi Pollack can be found HERE.
  • You can find our Facebook page HERE.
  • The 2018-19 Book prices are below. We will order the books for all registered students and they can be purchased from us on the first day of school!
    • K-6, $30/student
    • 7-10, $20/student