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Last Sunday, Rabbi Josh visited CBHCS to lead family minyan! The theme he introduced during family minyan was “Ahavah,” which is Hebrew for “love.”

Rabbi Josh talked about loving others as we love ourselves. Our families in the audience shared their thoughts on what it means to follow the Golden Rule (“Do unto others what you want them to do to you), and how we should strive to take that even further, not just stopping there.


Rabbi Josh also performed a skit he had written (himself, Rabbi G, and Kate as the performers) based on a famous story of Hillel and Shammai. In the skit, a boy named Dustin who has difficulty focusing for more than brief periods of time, goes to ask two rabbis if they can teach him all of the Torah, in a short enough time that they can stand on one foot the entire time. The first rabbi, Rabbi Shammai, becomes angry with Dustin for interrupting his study with such an absurd request. The second rabbi, Rabbi Hillel, is a bit puzzled, but agrees. He stands on one foot and says “What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow: this is the whole Torah; the rest is the explanation; go and learn.” What a great message to bring into the new year!


After family minyan, Rabbi Josh and Kate led a Rise Up teen workshop entitled “Technology & Privacy.” We discussed usage of social media, and how something we post now could potentially influence us years down the line. We also discussed the idea that once you put information out there, it is virtually impossible to get it back. To drive these points home, we did two activities: For the first, we gave each teen a handful of minuscule seeds, had them estimate how many they each had, and had them scatter the seeds around outside. After they’d finished, Kate requested that they find each of the seeds they’d estimated that they had originally begun with. (We did not actually make them collect the seeds in the end, don’t worry!) Rabbi Josh told them the Pillow Full of Feathers story, in which a Rabbi asks a man who gossips to cut open a feather pillow and let all the feathers scatter around the room and out the open window, telling him to collect each and every one of them once they have scattered. When the man says this is impossible, the Rabbi likens this to spreading gossip about others. We analyzed this in discussion, to note how the story can also be analogous to information and privacy--as well as what we say about other people online.

We also split the teens into groups and gave them each a scenario that had to do with privacy and technology, and had them each present a discussion or skit on one positive way to handle the scenario that respects privacy and one negative way to handle the scenario that doesn’t respect privacy. Some scenarios included "posting a picture of someone else on social media: Show one way of doing this that respects their privacy, and one way that neglects respecting their privacy;" "feeling frustrated about an argument you had with someone recently: Show a positive way to use technology to help you, that still respects privacy, and a negative way that does not respect privacy;" and "posting about something you THOUGHT you saw someone do at school that seems weird/bad: Show how you should decide what to do that leads to something positive and respects privacy, and show how you could do that might lead to something negative that doesn’t respect privacy.


Our teens had a lot of insight on this very relevant topic!


To find out what fun is on the horizon, check the bottom of each blog post for our "Upcoming Events" section.


To find out what our students were up to in their classes last week, see below:


K/1st Grade:


This week at CBHCS, we…

  • Learned all about the story of Noah’s Ark!

  • We watched a BimBam video about the Noah’s Ark story, and discussed how it’s our job to do Tikkun Olam (fix the world), and ways we can make the world a better place.

  • Learned that the rainbow is a symbol of G-d’s promise to never flood the entire earth again. We also learned that the rainbow is a symbol the LGTQB+ community.

  • Heard the blessing one says upon seeing a rainbow, and decorated a Rainbow Blessing sheet that we added to our student journals, to take home at the end of the year.

  • Heard a story about the animals on Noah’s Ark, and did lots of different yoga animal poses.

  • Were introduced to “Mah Nishtanah”--the 4 Questions for Passover. We are beginning to learn “Mah Nishtanah” now, so that we will be ready to sing it at our Passover seders!

2nd/3rd Grade:


Last Sunday, we learned about Rebecca, in the Torah. Rebecca is a great role model of compassion and kindness. We also discussed that Derech Eretz means living in a way that is good and upright, and that it’s an important Jewish value.


In Hebrew, we reviewed all our Hebrew letters, and played some movement-based games to further our review.


4th Grade:


On Sunday, we learned the story of David standing guilty. We discussed that even the greatest kings must abide by the commandments, and that repenting is an important part of Jewihs life. We also learned which commandments that David was guilty of not following.


In Hebrew, we continued to practice reading the Kiddush prayer.


5th Grade:


On Sunday, we focused on the theme of “continuing our Jewish journeys.” We discussed that Jewish learning is an ongoing part of Jewish life, and that striving for chochmah (wisdom) is an important aspect of Jewish life. We talked about how Judaism can be practiced in the community, the home, and the synagogue.


In Hebrew, we practiced reading the “Mi Chamochah” prayer.


6th Grade:


Last Sunday, we went over Parashiyot Terumah, Titzveh, Ki Tisah, Vayak’heil, and Pekudai. In these parashiyot, God asks the Israelites to give gifts for the construction of the Mishkan. We learn that the Mishkan is a place of meeting and worship. The Israelites anger God and Moses by building the Golden Calf. And God dwells within the Mishkan and protects the Israelites in the wilderness.


In Hebrew, we practiced the Birchot Ha’Haftarah.


7th Grade:


This past Sunday, we learned about the prophet, Jeremiah. We learned that Jeremiah was a young prophet who didn’t think he could take on the responsibility that God gave him. We tied this into a discussion on how there are many ways to pursue justice, and that young people can influence society.


In Hebrew, we started off with a review and practiced our reading skills.


Upcoming Events at CBHCS


1/12 - CBH Parent n' Me with Kate & Rabbi G


1/19 - MLK Day Weekend - NO SUNDAY SCHOOL


1/25 - Saturday Afternoon Magic the Gathering & Games for Teens (at CBH on Lavista)

3pm-5pm


1/26 - PET Parent Discussion: Talking to Your Kids About Anti-Semistism & Hatred/Violence (after family minyan)


2/2 - Rabbi Josh leads family minyan

- Rabbi Josh leads Rise Up Teen Workshop


2/9 - PET Parent Discussion: Discussion on Immigration


2/16 - Presidents' Day Weekend - NO SUNDAY SCHOOL


2/23 - CBH Parent n' Me with Kate & Rabbi G

- Purim Build-a-Basket Workshop (CBH on Lavista)

2:30-4:30


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Last Sunday, Rabbi G led family minyan and talked about the middah of “Ahavah,” which is Hebrew for “love.” With thoughts from our students in the audience, we discussed what it means to love. Putting love into words can be a little challenging! But many of our students offered some valuable insights, including that love is action, love is caring for others, love is feeling good about someone, love is helping someone, love is giving yourself and your time to someone, and more!


This past Sunday was a little different, as the CBH Congregational meeting was taking place out of the CBH synagogue. Because of this, we had a special kids & teachers minyan, in lieu of our regular family minyan (since parents were at the meeting!).

Parents, you should be proud of your children: All of our students were absolutely perfect during minyan--we had no problems at all, even from our youngest students! I am well aware that our students are gems, but I am still consistently impressed by them and their outstanding good middot.


This was also our last Sunday before Winter Break. Thank you for a wonderful semester together--we have so enjoyed having you and your children with us at CBHCS. We can’t wait for a new semester and year of learning, laughter, connection, and fun!


Enjoy the break, happy holidays, and see you in 2020!


REMINDER: CBHCS will be closed for Winter Break on 12/22 and 12/29. We will resume (at our regular hours) on 1/5.


To find out what fun is on the horizon, check the bottom of each blog post for our "Upcoming Events" section.


To find out what our students were up to in their classes last week, see below:


K/1st Grade:


This week at CBHCS, we…

  • Learned all about Chanukah!

  • Heard the telling of the story of Chanukah, with movement prompts to go along with each part of the story.

  • Sang the two Chanukah songs we’ve been learning (“Sevivon” and “I Have a Little Dreidel”), read a Chanukah book together, and learned all about the different Chanukah traditions and traditional Chanukah food.

  • Played two versions of dreidel: The traditional way, and a fun group game called “Movement Dreidel.”

  • Made Chanukah decorations, and decorated our own Chanukah Memory Match card game, to bring home.


2nd/3rd Grade:


Last Sunday, we learned that Chanukah celebrates the rededication of the Ancient Temple.

We learned that there are three blessings we say before we light the chanukiah (the nine-branched Chanukah menorah). We learned that it is important to find light in darkness, and discussed what this means.


In Hebrew, we learned and practiced reading/reciting the Chanukah blessings that we say before lighting the Chanukah candles.


4th Grade:


Last week, we learned about Chanukah. We heard the Chanukah story and learned that the Chanukah story tells of a time in history when Jews stood up for their rights. We discussed that we are all part of many different communities.


In Hebrew, we continued to practice the Brachot shel Shabbat (blessing of Shabbat).


5th Grade:


Last Sunday, in addition to talking about the upcoming holiday of Chanukah, we learned about the B’nei mitzvah: The bar mitz’vah/bat mitz’vah/brit mitzvah ceremony represents the transition into Jewish adulthood and acceptance of Jewish ritual obligations. We discussed that Jewish children become b’nei mitz’vah, children of the commandments, at the age of 12

or 13. We also discussed mizvah projects many children do leading up to their b’nei mitzvah ceremonies, and that mitzvah projects are opportunities to live the Jewish value of pursuing justice.


In Hebrew, we did a review of what we have been learning over the last few weeks.


6th Grade:


Last Sunday, we went over Parshat Mishpatim. In this parsha, G-d gives the Israelites rules to guide them as holy people. We learned that some of the rules dictate actions between people and other people, while other laws dictate actions between people and God.


In Hebrew, we practiced the Birchot Ha’Haftarah.


7th Grade:


Last week, we learned about the Prophet Isaiah. We discussed that we form many of our beliefs at a young age. We also discussed that G-d commands Jewish people to pursue justice, and what this means/how it can be done.


In Hebrew, we continued to review what we’ve been learning, before our long upcoming break.



From all of us at CBHCS: Happy holidays! Chag Chanukah sameach!



Upcoming Events at CBHCS


12/22-12/29 -


  • Winter Break - NO CBHCS

1/5 -

  • Rabbi Josh visits and leads family minyan

  • Rabbi Josh leads teen class at CBHCS

  • Coffee with Rabbi G (for parents)

1/12 -

  • CBH Parent n’ Me: Be a Super Mentsch!

1/19 -

  • No Sunday school--MLK Day weekend

1/25 -

  • Teen Magic the Gathering & Board Games at CBH on Lavista, 3pm-5pm for 6th-12th graders (Free but please RSVP!)


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Last Sunday was a busy and exciting day at CBHCS! Here’s what we were up to:


Rabbi Josh visited CBHCS to lead family minyan. We always love when Rabbi Josh visits! In addition to family minyan, he shared some words of wisdom on our middah of the week, HaKarat HaTov. HaKarat HaTov means gratitude, and literally “finding the good.” Rabbi Josh guided us in thinking of ways we could be “good finders,” and find the goodness to be thankful for--even in situations that don’t seem all that good.


Later that afternoon, Rabbi Josh also led our Rise Up teens on a hike on Doll Head Trail. He tied the fun outing into conversation on environmentalism, due to the unique nature/history of the trail: Years ago, a landfill was washed over onto the trail, leaving debris everywhere. Locals created artwork out of some of the debris (particularly the stranger pieces). There are now many displays of "found" art along the length of the trail.



After family minyan, our special guest, Rabbi Malka Packer-Monroe, helped facilitate a parent discussion entitled “Navigating the Winter Holidays as an Interfaith Family.” A huge thank you to Shana Cohen and the rest of our fabulous Parent Engagement Team for coordinating this awesome offering!


CBH Parent n’ Me also met after family minyan, and Kate led our PnMe families in some Chanukah fun! Our preschoolers saw pictures of traditional Chanukah objects and foods, learning what each was. We sang two Chanukah songs together, “I Have a Little Dreidel” and “Sevivon,” and danced around with scarves. Our preschoolers painted their own wood-and-metal chanukiahs, as well as their own wooden dreidels. They also played “Movement Dreidel,” had a snack, and heard a Chanukah story (The Hanukkah Guest by Eric A. Kimmel). They were sent home with their new chanukiahs and dreidels, as well as gelt, a Chanukah sticker, a latke recipe, our Chanukah song lyrics, and a Chanukah memory match game to play at home.



Last but not least, each class celebrated with a class Chanukah party at the end of the day. Our incredible parents brought in all kinds of treats and goodies (one class even had a dreidel-shaped pinata!). Each student also went home with a Chanukah goodie bag from CBHCS--a dreidel-shaped crayon, candy, a Chanukah sticker, and a fold-your-own-dreidel activity, all in a recyclable baggie.



REMINDER: CBHCS will be closed for Winter Break on 12/22 and 12/29. We will resume (at our regular hours) on 1/5.


To find out what fun is on the horizon, check the bottom of each blog post for our "Upcoming Events" section.


To find out what our students were up to in their classes last week, see below:


K/1st Grade


This week at CBHCS, we…

  • Learned that “Betzelem Elokim” means “in God’s image,” and that it’s a mitzvah to take care of oneself.

  • We decorated a “Betzelem Elokim: Why My Body Is Important & What I Love About It” pages for our journals, decorating person-figures to look like ourselves, and writing down why our bodies are important, things we love that each body part can do, things that make our bodies feel good, and things that make our bodies feel bad.

  • Played a group Kavod HaGuf (respecting the body) charades game, that showed ways to take care of our bodies, minds, and feelings.

  • Did a sensory and experiential activity to demonstrate how germs can spread from person to person, and discussed why it’s important to wash our hands with soap.

  • Read Hillel Takes a Bath by Vicki L. Weber, and made a “Kind Words Web” together as a group, in which each student practiced saying kind things about themselves.

  • We also learned and practiced the Dreidel Song, in preparation for Chanukah!


2nd/3rd Grade


Last Sunday, we learned that honoring your parents is a mitzvah, and talked about ways we can do this mitzvah. We also discussed different types of prayers/praying. We tied all these ideas into the story of the Akeidah (the Sacrifice of Isaac).


In Hebrew, we read the prayer for lighting the Chanukah candles, and learned its meaning.


4th Grade


Last Sunday, we learned about David, and all his friends and enemies. We heard the story of when God chooses David over King Saul, and we learned about the beautiful friendship of David and Jonathan. We discussed friendship and what it means to be a good friend.


In Hebrew, we practiced reading/reciting the Kiddush prayer.


5th Grade


Last Sunday, we learned about the choice to convert to Judaism, and the conversion process. We learned about the Jewish value of lo l’vayeish--do not embarrass, and how that relates to treating converts with respect and dignity, and making them feel welcome.


In Hebrew, we continued to practice the V’Ahavatah prayer.


6th Grade


Last week, we went over Parshat Yitro, and learned that the Jewish people have a responsibility to follow the Ten Commandments. We also learned that some people believe that every Jewish soul was present at Mount Sinai when the Ten Commandments were given.


In Hebrew, we did a review of everything we’ve been learning so far.


7th Grade


Last week, we talked about this time of year with Hanukkah and Christmas coming together. We talked about shared values that Christians and Jews have at this time of year, such as goodwill toward everybody. Then, we talked about the recent city of Decatur ordinance outlying discrimination against a variety of protected groups, including LGBTQ. We discussed that curiously, that ordinance outlaws discrimination because of disability but it does not define disability, though it defines all the other protected groups.


We also had our class Chanukah party, and the kids pleasantly socialized among themselves, playing games and connecting. Thank you to our class parents for bringing treats for us!




Upcoming Events at CBHCS


12/22-12/29 -


  • Winter Break - NO CBHCS


1/5 -


  • Rabbi Josh visits and leads family minyan

  • Rabbi Josh leads teen class at CBHCS

  • Coffee with Rabbi G (for parents)


1/12 -


  • CBH Parent n’ Me: Be a Super Mentsch!


1/19 -


  • No Sunday school--MLK Day weekend


1/25 -


  • Teen Magic the Gathering & Board Games at CBH on Lavista, 3pm-5pm for 6th-12th graders (Free but please RSVP!)


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