Planting our way into Spring

Dear Omanut Families,

It has been a wonderful February filled with Art, nature, and creativity!  We were lucky to be able to team up with the Teva class for TuB’shvat to do some planting in their garden.  We also shared an art project with them.  Together – the two classes created a sculpture garden forming three mandalas.  See the wonderful pictures in our slideshow a few paragraphs down.

Through this project we learned many lessons.  We learned of the ancient tale of Honi The Circle Maker, and talked about the symbolism of circles and how they might remind us of the oneness of God.  We also talked about creating intentions and learned about how in some cultures they pray near mandalas with strong intention.  We each created an intention related to nature and talked about how having an intention is just another way to communicate with God.  Last, we watched a really neat video on how to draw a mandala that the kids really loved!

We also learned what it means to create something bigger than ourselves.  One of the themes of TuB’shvat is the importance of planting trees to feed future generations.  It’s also important through art to share an expression of ourselves with others.  Many artistic creations have helped tell the story of our Jewish people throughout history.

Upon arrival back from our one week break, we created masks in celebration of the upcoming holiday, Purim.  This was just a fun crafty project where we also learned about how Queen Ester revealed herself as a Jew, and the importance of expressing who we truly are through artistic creation.

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This concludes our unit on God and Spiritualty.  This was my favorite unit, because I believe art to be a very spiritual experience.  The act of creating helps us to understand and connect to our unique individuality, and it also helps us to understand our power to create something from nothing and contribute to something greater than ourselves.

Some important reminders to conclude this post:

1.  Don’t forget that this Sunday, March 4, is the Purim Carnival!  We are looking forward to celebrating with you all.

2.  The following Sunday, March 11, Omanut families have the opportunity, during class, to participate in our Temple Isaiah 60th Anniversary special mosaic project.  We wanted to dedicate one day to our class for this project because we know omanut students would especially be interested in this activity.  There has been some confusion about this so I’d like to clarify:

  • It is a requisite that parents be present for this project because the tiles are sharp and students will each need a hand.  If you can’t make it on this day, we will try to send your student with a TA
  • If you are able to participate in the Omanut Mosaic Workshop on March 11th during your child’s regular Religious School time, please register here as soon as possible
  • For donations – there is a suggested donation to Temple Isaiah of $36 per person or $54 per family to participate in the Mosaic Project.  However, we really want to encourage participation.  You are not required to make a donation, you can just pay whatever you feel comfortable with.  Donations are necessary to cover the cost of the materials and fees for professional installation, but it is most important to me that our families participate, so just go ahead and register if you can attend!

Thank you for reading!  I look forward to seeing you all soon!

Peace & Love,


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Nadia Pacrault
    Mar 04, 2012 @ 19:34:36

    Hi Halley, I wanted to add that there will be no Tefillah time for the Omanut on March 11th to accomodate the Mosaic workshop schedule. Susan has spoken and cleared it out with Rabbi Greninger already. Can you please let everyone know to meet directly in the classroom on that day.
    Thank you,
    Nadia Pacrault/ Moss


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