Grade 4/Kitah Daled – Update 12.13.15
Posted on December 14, 2015
We started our day with a discussion sparked by the Community Questions developed by the seventh grade, focusing especially on the first question, which was about Joseph and the importance of dreams. We discussed methods of dream interpretation, the function of dreams in our lives today, and the role of dreams in Judaism, which allowed us to circle back to our lessons on prophets and God’s communication with them through dreams or visions.
After this discussion, we moved on to a lesson on Hanukkah, examined through a historical perspective that began with the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BCE and the subsequent splitting of his empire between his generals. Two of the miniature empires that formed after his death fought for control of the land that contained Judea; Antiochus IV Epiphanes, who appears as the main villain in the Hanukkah story, was a later ruler of one of these warring empires. We talked through the events in the story, and the students filled out a worksheet along the way to check their understanding. We also discussed where mention of Hanukkah is found—and not found—in Jewish writings, and what it might mean that the holiday is not mentioned in the Hebrew Bible.
After tefila and latkes generously served by the Men’s Club, we returned to the classroom for a Hanukkah trivia contest based largely (although not entirely) on the material we had covered earlier in the morning (the students all did extremely well), and closed with a 10-minute game of dreidel.
Happy Hanukkah, all!