A conservative, egalitarian synagogue

Nursery School's blog

Happiness and Modeh Ani

Fri, 08/01/2014 - 12:03pm -- Nursery School

by Rabbi Gordon Tucker, Senior Rabbi at Temple Israel Center

It is true that happiness may not be the ultimate value to be sought.  For example, there are times when that which would make us happy would significantly injure or disadvantage others.  Part of living a civilized, responsible life is in knowing that my right to happiness ends at the point at which my pursuit of my desires causes real harm.  It is surely what we all want our children to learn, and to learn it early in life.

Transitions: The Next Step

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 5:17pm -- Nursery School

by Ellen Cooper, LCSW

Throughout our lives we have heard things like: with every end comes a new beginning.  When one door closes, another opens, and so on and so on.

These "good- byes" and "new beginnings" we speak of are known as life transitions. Leaving pre-school and preparing for the next phase of your child's education can sometimes be an "easier said than done" proposition. There can be simultaneous excitement and enthusiasm side by side with anxiety and apprehension. This is normal!

Making the School Year a Success

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 4:52pm -- Nursery School

by Dr. Marilyn Cooperman, clinical psychologist

It’s that time of year again. The time when our sleepy suburbs stir with families returning from vacations and preparing for the start of the school year. This year is especially busy as the first days of school arrive in the midst of the Days of Awe.

Whether you are bringing a child to TIC Nursery School for the first time or your child is returning to our school, you can help your child get ready to have a successful year.

Yihus, Yizkor, and Telling the Family Narrative

Tue, 06/03/2014 - 5:29pm -- Nursery School

by Rabbi Michael Goldman, Assistant Rabbi at Temple Israel Center

A friend of a friend of mine came from India. She got a job at a very tony girls’ prep school in Washington DC. Once early on she found herself in the midst of a conversation with some of her colleagues who were comparing notes on their colonial ancestry. This one let known her membership in the Daughters of the American Revolution. That one could trace her lineage all the way back to the Mayflower. At a certain point, one of the women noticed my friend’s friend’s silence. “How terribly inconsiderate of us!” she said, “We should have realized that you couldn’t relate, being from India.” “But I can,” my friend’s friend replied, “I am a direct descendent of the Sun.” “The son of whom?” one of them asked. “Not s-o-n, but s-u-n. Brahmins are the descendants of the Sun-god.”

Sending Your Child with Special Needs into the World: 6 Tips

Sun, 06/01/2014 - 2:34pm -- Nursery School

by  Michelle Steinhart, Director of Special Student Services at Shorashim, Temple Israel Center's Religious School

The first day of preschool is an exciting and nerve-racking time for most parents. Questions swirl: Will my child be happy? Will I like and connect with the teachers? Will my child miss me? How do I know they're taking good care of my baby?

Living Torah, Torah for Life, Torat Hayyim

Thu, 12/26/2013 - 2:37pm -- Nursery School

by Nancy Parkes, Director of Congregational Learning

As I am writing this, we are completing the book of Bereshit. After reciting the last verse in this book (or any book of the Torah), the congregation joins the reader and says, “Hazak, hazak, v’nithazek, “Be strong, be strong, and together we will be strengthened.” I have always found this to be a moving moment. For me, it signifies not only the learning and achievement of finishing one of the books of the Torah, but the power of community. We are indeed stronger together.

Pretend Play

Wed, 12/18/2013 - 1:37pm -- Nursery School

by Abra Goldemberg, Nursery School Parent

I have been in a reflective mood since the end of Hanukkah. I will miss the ritual of lighting the candles with my family and the smell of frying latkes. I love using the hanukkiot that my kids have crafted in school with each year’s version a little different from the last. In fact, these crafty hanukkiot are central elements of my Hanukah display. During the holiday, I often sneak a peek at these menorahs and find myself reminiscing about lighting the hanukiot that my brother and I made in Nursery School so many years ago.

A Thankful Hanukkah

Wed, 11/27/2013 - 3:27pm -- Nursery School

by Patty Goldstick, Nursery School Director

I am feeling very thankful today. Thankful for my friends and family. Thankful our dog, Teddy, is finally housebroken. Thankful my son, Caleb, is home. Thankful for having a job that I love, for my home, and for always having plenty to eat.


Thu, 11/21/2013 - 3:33pm -- Nursery School

by Patty Goldstick, Nursery School Director

This month the Nursery School staff has been exploring together ways to make the very rare convergence of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah the most meaningful possible for our children.How rare is this occurrence? Well, it won’t happen again in our lifetime. Since the Jewish calendar is lunar while the Gregorian calendar is solar, the Jewish calendar is about 10 days short of a solar calendar. That is why the Jewish holidays don’t fall on the same Gregorian calendar day each year. Thanksgiving and Hanukkah would have overlapped in 1861, but Thanksgiving wasn’t formally established until two years later. That means Thanksgivukkah has never happened before and it won’t happen again until at least 79,043!

Budding Readers: Early Literacy at TIC Nursery School

Sun, 05/19/2013 - 5:47pm -- Nursery School

By Patty Goldstick, Nursery School Director

Spring has finally sprung! At this time of year, I love watching the dormant trees of winter start to get covered once again with color and blossoms. And at this time of year, I also love to watch our budding readers blossom as so much of what they’ve learned this year “clicks”, and they start taking it to the next level.

First Experiences of Israel

Thu, 04/18/2013 - 4:18am -- Nursery School

by Nancy Parkes, Director of Congregational Learning

I first visited Israel when I was ten years old. My family and I stayed on a moshav for six weeks exploring the country and getting a sense of what it might be like to actually live in this country. As a guest of the moshav, we were not exempt from daily chores. My responsibility was to gather the eggs each morning in the chicken coop. I may not remember much about the historical sites we visited that summer, but I do remember my experience with the chickens- and, of course, who could forget the smell! Most importantly, I remember the people I met and the sense of home I felt wherever I went.

Focus on Teva: Metamorphosis!

Thu, 04/11/2013 - 4:04am -- Nursery School

by Gail Koller, Nature Specialist

In the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar, a caterpillar makes a cocoon and out emerges a butterfly. But, as we found out from the big book A Butterfly is Born, by Melvin Berger, a butterfly actually comes out of a chrysalis. Between the huge photographs in the book and the classroom caterpillar project, it was easy for all the children to see the stages of metamorphosis of a butterfly...and just in time since their classes painted lady caterpillars just arrived! 

Bedikat Hametz

Fri, 03/22/2013 - 3:55am -- Nursery School

by Patty Goldstick, Temple Israel Center Nursery School Director

What a busy week in our nursery school!  For young children, gettingready for Passover is exhausting and so much fun!!  Our classes have been completely immersed in Passover - baking for the seders, learning all the songs and blessings, acting out the story and making lots of props to help tell the  story and keep them engaged during their own seders at home.  Our 2s and 4s classes had class seders early in the week, and today the 3s classes had beautiful seders with special visitors from home!

Play & Exploration

Fri, 03/01/2013 - 2:17am -- Nursery School
by Patty Goldstick, Nursery School Director

Ever wonder why a child-centered, play-based approach is more valuable than teacher-directed instruction in the early childhood classroom? Check out this article about the importance of explorative play and the emerging research which suggests that teaching kids more and more, at ever-younger ages, may actually backfire.

The Halfway Mark

Fri, 02/22/2013 - 2:03am -- Nursery School

by Patty Goldstick, Temple Israel Center Nursery School Director

It is hard to believe that we are at the half way mark in the school year. Looking around the Nursery School, one can notice the friendships that have developed and the routines that have been internalized. The children in all the classrooms have been busy exploring their environments while learning through play and interacting with the world around them. Each day, in so many ways, our children are developing and growing! 

Focus on Teva: Birds!

Fri, 02/01/2013 - 5:02pm -- Nursery School

by Gail Koller,  Nature Specialist

Our 3s learned about birds (tzeporim) in teva (nature) class this week. Each child sat in front of a large cut out of a different bird illustration from Brian Wildsmith's book, Birds. We looked at each bird and identified what was unique about it: the heron had very long legs, the turkey was very colorful, the nightingale seemed to be frowning and the blackbird looked angry.


Subscribe to RSS - Nursery School's blog