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Dear Het (8th-grade) Parents,
It was a busy last month of Kitah Het! We continued to explore events leading to Israel becoming an independent state in 1948. We learned about the three fighting units in pre-state Israel that eventually became the modern-day IDF. We learned about the Balfour Agreement and then the British Mandate over Palestine.
We discussed the refugee crisis of Jews trying to leave Europe prior to World War II and the Holocaust. We continued to learn that Israel couldn’t take many survivors of the Holocaust after the war as it wasn’t a Jewish State until 1948. At that time, Israel also became a refuge for Jews who were being displaced from Arab countries. We learned about Ashkenazi, Sephardi, and Mizrahi Jews. We saw videos about early clashes over land between Palestinians and Jews. We learned that today's Palestinian/Israeli conflict has its roots in the early 20th century which continues today. We learned to look at the conflict from different points of view, and different narratives.
We also spent time in class prepping for the DC trip. Once we returned we spent a class period sharing our thoughts and feelings about visiting the Holocaust Museum. It was a pleasure to teach these students. I was impressed with their compassion, intelligence, and curiosity about Israel and the Holocaust.
Thank you for sharing your kiddos with me, and Mazel Tov for graduating from Talmud Torah!