Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The Beginning of Slavery

Teaching Pesach incorporates two main areas; Yitziyat Mitzrayim (the historical events celebrated on Pesach) and the way we celebrate Pesach (cleaning, matza, seder, etc.). The students were asked which topic they would like to focus on first and they chose Yitziyat Mitzrayim.

Today we began our life as slaves. Everyone remembered Paroh from the parshiot in Sefer Shemot and had varied emotions about seeing him again. Today he was not quite as mean as we remembered, as he supplied us with all the materials we needed to build cities for him. 
 Paroh gave the slaves bricks (foam blocks) and mortar (shaving cream). With a tool (popsicle stick), the students spread mortar onto the bricks and got to work.
 The slaves were not particularly unhappy about construction.
 In fact, they really enjoyed this variation on building.
 Spreading is an important fine motor skill, using coordination,  guiding of support hand, and muscular development.

 The mortar was a fun sensory experience.
 The blocks stuck together in a unique way, allowing more building opportunities.

 It also fostered communication skills, as pairs attempted to build together. The team of Chana and Michal initially struggled with each builder following her own individual vision.  In a very mature way, they eventually compromised and created a shared vision.

Paroh does not use lashon tov (we spoke about using kind speech yesterday in connection with Parashat Tazria) so he didn't have anything nice to say about their work. But I was very impressed.

 Selfies with Paroh!

Unfortunately, slavery is not always so fun. It is about to get harder...

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