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SJCS Perspectives

Welcome to the Seattle Jewish Community School Blog

Parents, alumni, volunteers and staff share their thoughts on what makes SJCS exceptional! 

New Year’s Reflection from Ron

September 12, 2018

Welcome back to all our families, staff and incredible community of supporters. I hope that your Rosh Hashanah holiday provided you time for celebrating with your loved ones, reflecting on the year that has past, and envisioning of an exciting year ahead. Kol Hakavod to Debbie M., Cara, Mihal and Rabbi Emily for engaging our school with a heartwarming Rosh Hashanah program last Friday and an afternoon filled with song, blessings, creativity, and mitzvot, capped with a sunny afternoon enjoying fresh apples and honey! I spent these introspective days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur relishing the sunshine and tranquility… Read More »

Congratulations to our Departing 5th Graders

June 8, 2018

Mazal Tov on your graduation from Seattle Jewish Community School — Class of 2018. תשע”ח For me, nothing is more rewarding than seeing how you’ve grown and are beginning to spread your wings. Here at SJCS, you have learned how to read and write in two languages, how to solve problems in math — and in life. You have learned how to collaborate with your peers, how to think, to ask questions, how to fail and learn from it, and how to move on. We have nurtured your curiosity and encouraged you to be authentic, imaginative, and creative. You have… Read More »

Mad about Engineering

May 30, 2018

SJCS students love opportunities to explore STEM subjects through project-based learning and our 5th grade scientists are mad about engineering! It all started with learning how to deconstruct. This included taking apart computers, cell phones, Ipods, and even a record player. The next step involved construction – of robots. Using specific tools and their knowledge of motors and wiring, the 5th graders were able to construct their own moving robots. The final project was a robot fashion show, which featured everything from an opera singer robot to an angel robot. These hands-on learning experiences exposes our students to cooperative learning, mechanics,… Read More »

Alumni Making the World a Better Place

May 23, 2018

Looking at this year’s 5th graders, it is amazing to think about how far they have come. From Gan students, to student leaders. Students are preparing for middle school from the moment they enter Gan and it is a privilege to witness the transition.  This year’s  5th graders are ready for 6th grade.  They know how to take notes, how to advocate for themselves and others, how to comfort and be comforted, how to take responsibility and to be accountable for their own actions. They have been encouraged to ask questions about their world: What can I do to help?  How can… Read More »

5th Graders Explore Surveys & Statistics

May 17, 2018

In 4-5th Grade Math, we are learning about Statistics, data collection, and displaying data. We are also learning how to be critical consumers of information, particularly graphic displays. Students are building on their learning from 3rd and 4th grade to survey peers, find averages, and build graphs. Now this is taken to the next level, as students will ask their “sample” two quantitative statistics questions and plot the coordinates of these answers to see if there is a correlation between two sets of data. Students are further growing their technology skills by using Google Sheets to record and graph their data.… Read More »

Body System Exploration

May 7, 2018

It’s time to take a journey through the human body with SJCS’ fourth grade scientists! Our students recently tackled Body Systems, becoming experts in both the functions of human body and in researching skills. This two month long project took the students through the researching process, using both books and the internet. They then took that research and designed a PowerPoint presentation, incorporating not only the information, but technology skills, as well. Finally, the students built replicas of the body part they had researched – getting extremely creative! All of this culminated in presentations, where the students presented their projects and research to… Read More »

Wisdom from Student Scholars

May 3, 2018

When we say that the Jews are the people of the book, we often are referring to the Torah. However, there is another book that has connected Jews for over 1000 years, the Siddur. Siddur means “order”, so it is not surprising that this book contains the orders of prayers recited morning, afternoon, and evening each day as well as for special events such as Shabbat and holidays. This week, our second grade students found their place in this chain of tradition as they received  their own Siddurim (prayer books) from their loved ones. To prepare for this day, students practiced… Read More »

Owning their Ideas through Writing Workshop

April 26, 2018

There is something magical about setting aside a certain time of day when everyone is writing. We know that students learn to write by writing, and the focus of Writing Workshop is giving students devoted time for writing every day. The workshop starts with a mini-lesson, a quick, whole-group lesson that teaches students about some aspect of what good writers do. This could involve reading a story from a mentor text, modeling how to write, think-alouds, and/or direct instruction of something as basic as how to add quotation marks to a story. Another part of the workshop involves one-on-one conferring… Read More »

Passover – The Telling of Freedom

March 29, 2018

Pesach (Passover) is a holiday about freedom, because it celebrates the Israelite liberation from slavery in Egypt. We celebrate the holiday at home with a big festive meal, the Seder (Order), that has a particular order of 15 steps. According to our sages these are the rituals that will lead us to understand what freedom is. By using a Haggadah, a booklet of instructions, prayers, blessings, and stories that lays out the proper order for the ritual, we enact one of the most important aspects of the Seder, the recitation of the Exodus story. The Haggadah instructs that “In every generation, every person… Read More »

Science at SJCS is out of this world!

March 16, 2018

5th grade science this trimester was literally out of this world!  Our fifth grade scientists explored the cosmos, from planets to black holes to even constellations!  SJCS science is all about research and discovery integrated with hands-on learning.  Our astronomy studies started with the phases of the moon, using oreos to display each phase.  We then moved toward the planets, learning their names, order from the sun, and identifiable characteristics.  Students built their own solar systems and then individually researched and built a planet of their choosing. The unfortunate death of scientist Stephen Hawking allowed us the opportunity to honor him… Read More »