Thursday, April 20, 2017

1st Grade Cards Make an Impact

Empowering students to understand how they can make a difference in the world from a very young age is an important part of The Davis Academy curriculum. The sooner children realize that they can make a positive impact in another person's life, even a stranger, the better. Click here to see a truly heartwarming video that features many Davis Academy 1st graders and highlights a special partnership with JF&CS and their Aviv Celebrations program.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Passover 2017/ 5777

In the weeks leading up to and following Passover, Davis Academy students across the grade levels participate in meaningful Passover related learning. Mechina children lead their first model seder using The Sammy Spider Haggadah, kindergarten children travel around the school reenacting different parts of the Passover story, 1st graders show off their emerging Hebrew skills with Morah Galia, 2nd graders put on a seder “show” that focuses on generating authentic conversations across the generations, 3rd graders sample Passover traditions and cuisines from around the world, 4th graders dip strawberries in chocolate as part of their year of studying creative ritual, and 5th graders have a “Freedom Seder” based on an actual seder from 1969 that brought Jews and African Americans together in celebration of Civil Rights. In the weeks following Pesach, our 6th graders will teach their peers at Queen of Angels Catholic School about the holiday, our 7th graders will explore the meaning of freedom in Washington D.C. and our 8th graders will fulfill the vision of the closing words of the Haggadah, “Next year in Jerusalem.” Each of these experiences is possible because of the authentic learning that empowers the children to be full participants.  

All of these educational experiences make a profound impact on our children and this impact is even greater when it is reinforced at home. Those families that have rich Passover traditions can look forward to the dynamic interaction between your home traditions and the new ideas and insights that your children bring with them from The Davis Academy. And those families that are relatively new to Passover can begin to build traditions with these same resources while drawing on other family holiday celebrations to help infuse Passover with special spirit. 

The amazingly joyful and creative Passover experiences here at The Davis Academy coupled with each family's personal practices is what creates theunbreakable bond and connection for our children. And this point holds true well beyond Passover. Among the many exceptional aspects of The Davis Academy Kehilah is the strong sense of shared values and traditions. Whether they know it or not, our children have the special blessing of growing up in an integrated community where school and home join together in a sacred covenant of mutual respect and support so that our children may find and appreciate their unique place in the world.  

Monday, March 13, 2017

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see.

Closed storefront mural, Machaneh Yehudah Market, Jerusalem

There's a common adage that goes (and I'm paraphrasing here), "Whatever we're looking for is what we will see." Psalm 68:20, the basis for the song "Baruch Adonai" asks us to see God's sustaining power in every day and every moment. If we look for this sustaining power can see it? I'm not sure. But if we aren't looking for it, then we're likely to see whatever it is that we're looking for.

"Blessings be to God, who day by day sustains us."

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see. 

"Ever present kindness."

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see.

"Broken shards become whole." 

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see.

"Endless beauty comes our way."

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see.

"Blessings rain, great and small."

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see.

"A warm embrace from a loving friend."

Whatever we're looking for is what we will see. 

As you listen to "Baruch Adonai" (Track 6 on Menschology), enjoy the lullaby feel of the music and try to take to heart the vision expressed in the Psalm and the additional lyrics. You can listen wherever you stream music or on CD Baby.