Thursday, February 10, 2011

Alef Bet and Parshas Tetzaveh: First post

This week we decided to try A NEW kRIAH GAME to make learning a little more fun and incorporate some physical activity. Our 3 year old loves to learn thank G-d, but as a three year old, has about a 3 minute attention span when it comes to focusing on alef bet and nekudot.

Alef Bet Obstacle Course
So I printed out large posters of the alef bet (some pictured below), initially just Alef through Daled, and some big cards with the different nekudot. M excitedly chose different spots all around the main area of our apartment to put the alef-bet signs, mostly on the accesible wall, some on places she had to climb over stuff to get to. To introduce the game, I made her run and touch each of the alef bet by calling out commands like "touch the letter that makes the sound "b" !" She loved this right away, so I made it a bit more challenging. I gave her the fiirst nekuda card ( a kamatz) which I called a "key", and called out sounds she should make ("Da!") she had to put the "key" under the letter to "produce" the sound, and then do "the dance," essentially hopping up and down saying the sound she made a few times. She LOVED running around, climbing over things, making each sound and showing me what she knows. When she completed each "level" (each nekuda key with all the letters), she got a small sticker. We got most of the nekudot with all those Alef Bet..... that's alef-bet focus for HALF AN HOUR, which I consider a huge deal for a three year old. We played this game another time this week to, adding three more letters. I think this game is a keeper and we'll keep making it a little more challenging :-).

Parshas Tetzaveh Activities

As usual, we started our parsha learning with our favorite parsha book, "Tell me the Story of the Parsha (below)
it's a little (ok, a lot) too yeshivish for us in some ways (i.e., Jews are only referred to as "Yidden", and some things are a little too midrash-y for us, but we make it up and change the words when reading if need be. This week's parsha was focused on the clothing of the Kohanim- most exciting was that of the Kohen Gadol.

After reading, M excitedly colored the pictures of the bigdei kehuna from (so, they were all blue, not gold, not multicolored. she has a thing with navy this week. oh well).

Then I got this idea from one of my most favorite blogs written by a supremely amazing woman:, who inspired us to make "parsha cakes" starting about a year ago. But we're only us + favorite local cousin this week, so we don't need a cake, this idea was converted into cookies.
Choshen Cookies:
The tapestry behind the choshen was woven with gold, white gold, red, yellow, and purple thread.
Used recipe for chocolate chip cookies (levana kirschenbaum), then seperated the dough into four balls, left one plain and dyed others red, yellow, purple w/food coloring, then gently blended the colors together, I think the results were great:

When they were cool and hardened enough, we put some "gold" background (frosting) and stuck on the "stones" of the choshen (jelly bellies). I'm not as creative/motivated/time flexible to do all the Torah-prescribed colors, but we had fun anyway, and I think M has a fun and understandable idea of the choshen at this point... (and excitement to serve and eat them on shabbos)
Ok,that's all for our first blog. We may or may not have time to reveal the contents of this weeks "parsha bag" another time.
Good Shabbos!


  1. Wow, Yael! I found this blog from Rachel's buzz and I'm going to enjoy reading it! It sounds like M is doing great! love, Jackie

  2. Thanks for the link! I love the aleph beis game - What a great idea, I'll have to try it.

  3. I only wish this blog was available when I raising my children