I Belong at Camp

I hope everyone had a nice weekend. The hail on Monday was pretty crazy in Granite Bay. About as close as we’ll get to it looking like snow at our house! This week, I wanted to highlight two events that are coming up in a couple of weeks at TOR.

Is your kid going to camp this summer? Jewish Summer Camp is an incredible way for our kids to maintain their connection to Judaism, outside of the religious school setting. At camp, kids meet other Jewish kids from the local area and from all over the country. Research has shown that kids who go to Jewish camp, whether it is summer or weekend sessions, are more likely to continue to identify Jewishly when they grow older. We want our kids to deepen their connections to Judaism in every way possible. Attending services and being a part of a temple community is one step. Going to camp is another.

I know that we already have kids from our congregation who go to Camp Newman. We also have kids who attend other camps in California. For those of you who have not yet sent your kids to camp, we want to let you know what is out there. So, on February 12th, we are hosting a camp showcase. We will have 6 different camps here, sharing their specialties and giving you an opportunity to ask questions.

The morning will be structured to allow each camp to share and provide time to visit their tables individually and ask questions.

  • 9am to 9:30am – Tefillah
  • 9:30 to 10:30am- Camp presentations to parents (most kids will go to class, you are welcome to keep your child in for the presentations, but they will need to go to class when the presentations conclude)
  • 10:30 to 11am – Opportunity to visit individual camp tables.

**For those of you who have 4th or 5th graders, this falls on the day when your class is going to the Placer SPCA. The class will leave for the field trip at 10:45, thus giving you plenty of time to attend the camp showcase as well. For those who have 3rd graders, this will be in place of the family education program for February. You are welcome to join your 3rd grader in class at 11:15 for the art project that morning.

I hope that all parents will stay and at least hear about the different camp options that are available. Also, there is financial aid available for all of our kids. As I’m sure the camps will tell you, we don’t want kids to miss out on camp because of financial hardship. The camps have scholarships and our temple has some funds set aside to help as well.

Click Here for the temple scholarship form. Deadline for applications for Summer of 2017 is April 1st. Decisions will be made by April 5th.

parents night out event.pngThe second thing coming up is our Parent’s Night Out. On Saturday, February 11th, we are hosting a program for kids so that their parents (you!) can go out on a date… or do laundry… or go grocery shopping… or whatever it is you need to do for four hours. 🙂 The cost is $25 per kid for the first two kids, maximum of $60 for 3 or more kiddos. We want you to drop them at the temple at 5pm, where we will spoil them with pizza, games and a movie, then pick them up at 9, exhausted and ready to sleep! You can even send pajamas and we’ll get them ready for bed!

Click here to sign your kids up for this fun night!

++++++++++ Announcements +++++++++++

Wednesday, January 25 @ 6:30 – Hebrew School

Friday, January 27 @ 10am – Gan K’tan

Friday, January 27 @ 6:45 – Final Friday Shabbat Services and Dinner – catered by El Pollo Loco. $10 per person.

Sunday, January 29 @ 9:30am – Religious School

Sunday, January 29 @ 12pm – Purim Spiel Practice – we would still love to have more pirates for our play. Please plan to stay! This week we will finish at 1pm for all players except the leads (Esther, Mordechai, Ahasuerus, and Haman). Leads will rehearse until 2pm.

Wednesday, February 1st @ 6:30pm – Hebrew School and Confirmation Class; No Madrichim training

Friday, February 3rd @ 6:45pm – Family Shabbat featuring the 4th and 5th grade classes.

++++++++++ School Update ++++++++++


Our youngest learners had fun exploring the story of Moses as a baby in the rushes. They also made tzedakkah boxes. Each month, this class is going to work toward a new goal with their tzedakkah. For the month of February, they are collecting money to use to donate food for our temple food closet program. Help your student remember to bring some coins to put in their new tzedakkah boxes!

1st and 2nd Grade

Efrat’s class also talked about giving tzedakkah and decorated beautiful ceramic banks to collect tzedakkah in. The practiced the Hebrew letters they are learning and added some to the list. They have been using the letters to make new words. Hebrew is such a different language than English, and Efrat is doing a great job of exposing them to the letters so that they can be more comfortable with it! Each week, they sing songs to remember some of the Hebrew words that they are learning. Ask your student to share this with you!

3rd Grade

Our third grade class has just started a unit on Responsibility. The learned about the many different hats that people wear and how each one comes with its own responsibility. The concept proved to be a little difficult for some of our kids. They talked about different ways that even they can change the world in a positive way.  They will be learning more about what it means to be responsible over the next three weeks.

Ask your student about the lesson. Ask them what kinds of things they are responsible for around the house? Are there living things that they are responsible for? (pets, for example). Work together to find something new that they can be responsible for in your family.

4th and 5th Grade

For those who do not already know, our 4/5 grade teacher, Sara had to travel to Israel this past week. Her father passed away last Friday. She will be back in a couple of weeks. This week, Eden taught our class. They worked on a lesson exploring the question, What make a person a good leader? They looked at this question in the context of Moses and the burning bush. In addition, the class had music with Carol and worked on their Hebrew as well.

Hopefully all of you received my email yesterday outlining the changes that are taking place in this class. We will be dividing the class into two separate classes. Grade 4 will stay in room 4 with Sara on Sundays and Yifat on Wednesday. Grade 5 will move to room 5 and will have Adam Frank as their teacher on Sundays and Kinneret Jakob-Frutkoff on Wednesdays. It is my hope that this change will have a positive impact on the learning environment for all of the students. I appreciate your patience as we worked through the necessary obstacles to make this happen.

6th Grade

Our 6th grade class has been working on their famous Jewish individuals poster presentations. They are turning out great! In addition, this week they discussed Moses Maimonides and the 8 laws of giving to the poor. They also are continuing to read from 10,000 Children, learning about the different children impacted by the Holocaust.

For art this week, the students worked on a beautiful project that will soon grace our foyer. Just you wait!

7th Grade

Our b’nai mitzvah class is slowly improving in their Hebrew skills. They have been working with Avi and receiving focused tutoring from Michele on Sunday mornings. Again, I cannot stress enough the importance of practicing every single day.

In their session with Art, they had a wonderful discussion about what makes a family. Is your family only those people who are a blood relation? Does it include the patriarchs and matriarchs of our faith? Are we all part of one big interconnected family? I encourage you to use these questions to spark a discussion at home.