Zayin (7th-grade) Curriculum Overview

Updated: Oct 22, 2021


ZAYIN 1: Monday/Wednesday


Zayin 1 (7th grade) 2021-2022 Curriculum Overview

Mary Baumgarten

Dear Kitah Zayin 1 (7th grade) Parents,


It is such a joy for me to have your student in my Wednesday evening IN PERSON class.

I can see how happy my students are to be together and I share in that happiness with them.


The following is a brief curriculum overview for my class.


American Jewish History

  • Text: Challenge and Change

  • Family Histories

  • Challenges immigrants face

  • First Jews in America,

Revolutionary War

Move West

Civil War,

Waves of Immigration

Early Life in America

  • Retaining Jewish identity vs. assimilation. How to do both.


Mitzvot

  • Text: Making a Difference

  • Study of key mitzvot in Judaism: Ex. Bikkur Holim (Visiting the Sick), Rodef Shalom (Peacemaking), Bal Tashchit (Don’t Destroy)

  • Different types of mitzvot

  • How mitzvot add holiness to our lives

  • Integrating mitzvot into our daily lives

  • How our choices impact our lives

  • Stories about teen role models

  • Performance of mitzvot: relationship with Perspectives and Sholom Home. We will support them in whatever way we can, as needed by them, until we can resume on site mitzvah visits


It is a privilege working with your children.


Thank you for partnering with us.


I look forward to a great year with them at TT.


L’hitraot,


Mary

mbaumgarten@talmudtorahmpls.org


ZAYIN 2: Monday only


Zayin 2 (7th grade) 2021-2022 Curriculum Overview

Avi Baron and TA Leah Spencer

Dear Kitah Zayin 2 (7th grade) Parents,


The following is a curriculum overview from our Monday evening Zayin 2 class at Talmud Torah. After reading the information below, please feel free to reach out to me via email (abaron@talmudtorahmpls.org) to ask any questions. The main topic for each class is also in RenWeb under the Lesson Plans.


As this year has begun, among the holidays and the changing weather, Zayin Hot Topics has started with our understanding of Judaism and our lens through which we see the world, which is the foundation of this course. We’re building our foundation in the form of a Venn diagram inspired by Gill Mann’s book How to Get More out of Being Jewish to place events in this Jewish viewfinder. The adjusted Venn diagram has three circles: Morality, Faith, and Peoplehood. Each class topic exists within the diagram, the exact location of each is determined by your student.





The curriculum of this course covers a variety of specific topics that fit within the larger umbrellas of:

  • Jewish identity. Living as Jews in America and understanding historical Jewish immigration.

  • B'nei Mitzvah. A milestone year, social action, writing and presenting a d’var.

  • Jewish Values. Wrestling with ethical questions and discussing Jewish values, including how they compare to secular values and those of other religions.

  • New York Judaism. What made and continues to make Judaism in New York unique and what makes Judaism thrive?

  • Holidays.Understanding selected holidays at a b’nei mitzvah maturity level.


Students signed up for the Monday only class, which runs until 8:45pm and is a smaller class, will cover some additional topics which include studying current events from a Jewish perspective, relating to today’s challenges and controversies, and learning about the roots of Judaism in different aspects of culture.


I encourage you to ask your student what challenged them in class. This is a year of personal growth, with topics your student may wrestle with outside of the classroom by having ongoing discussions with trusted adults or among friends.


B’Shalom,

Avi Baron

abaron@talmudtorahmpls.org



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