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 I make a difference? How can I make the world a better place?
They have been encouraged to be reflective: How can I be the best me I can be? How can I be a supportive friend? What are my gifts and how might I share them?
They are taught the value of appreciation: How can I say thank you to my family, to each other, to the community? What does Judaism teach us about being thankful?
Our students learn the value of history and of our story as a Jewish people. They learn to ask: What are the lessons of our culture? How does our history enrich our lives?
Our students are ready for middle school because they can solve problems, ask hard questions and research the answers. They communicate through effective words. They are kind and speak the language of mitzvot. We have seen over the past 26 years that SJCS alumni become leaders in their new schools. They model derech eretz. They love to learn. They excel. They celebrate and sing. And they continue to be lifelong learners. SJCS graduates know how to make the world a better place. We look forward to hearing about their new experiences as each of them come back to visit.
Debbie Butler, Learning Specialist
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
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 »
At SJCS our staff continues to educate ourselves about how we can best serve the social emotional needs of each of our students and our goal to create a systematic, school-wide approach to inclusion. To support these efforts, we recently held two staff trainings with Tracy Flynn M.Ed. a professional equity and inclusion educator from Welcoming Schools during our faculty meetings. Welcoming Schools, a project of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, is a comprehensive program that addresses embracing family diversity, avoiding gender stereotyping, and ending bullying and name-calling. Developed for pre-k and elementary age students, staff and families, it offers an… Read More »