On April 29, The Cohen School celebrated Israel’s 70th birthday so that the students could build a strong commitment to the Jewish people and the land of Israel.
Throughout the year, students in each grade worked on selected Israeli attractions. Those in kindergarten and first grade focused on Jerusalem’s Gates while second and third graders explored Beer Sheva. The fourth and fifth grade class was excited to learn about Tel Aviv, while the sixth and seventh graders dove into learning about the Dead Sea.
Tslil Reichman, the community shlichah (emissary), helped the students prepare their research and provided them an introduction to their topic. Then, the teachers helped guide them throughout the year with online research creating posters and creating other interactive models to teach other students.
The day of the Yom ha-Atzmaut celebration began and each class had the opportunity to travel through the other classrooms to explore. The students were encouraged to gain knowledge about Israel and then confidently present to their school peers.
The sixth and seventh graders recreated the Dead Sea with “fabric water” and sand, beach chairs, and a floating experiment. The kindergarten and first grade class adorned each classroom door with a banner with the name of the gate, while the second and third graders made amazing Beer Sheva posters. The fourth and fifth graders revealed cool tips about places to visit, museums, restaurants and special attractions in Tel Aviv.
After the classroom tours, everyone stopped for a bite to eat at the “Falafel Stand.” Students enjoyed homemade falafel, pita, hummus and Israeli salad. Then they gathered on the giant Israel map, provided by Reichman, and searched for special cities and landmarks. Following the map search, they sang songs with Rabbi Aaron Philmus, near the school’s Kotel replica. The program ended with the whole school singing “Hatikvah” by the Israeli flag.
DORI ADLER is the education director at Temple Torat Yisrael in East Greenwich.