Special Sukkot Lesson Graphic

Kitah Sukkot Lesson: Understanding the Four Minim

Welcome to this free Kitah lesson prepared by Rabbi Reuven Spolter!

To access the lesson, click here;

If you are a teacher, we invite you to share this lesson using Google Classroom or any other online e-learning platform. You can find the link to the editable form here.

About this lesson:
In this lesson, Rabbi Spolter analyzes the source in the Torah for the taking of the Four Species. We all know that the Four Species are the Lulav, Hadasim, Aravot and Etrog. Yet, many people do not realize that the names of the those plants don’t appear in the Torah the way we describe them! The Torah uses different words entirely. How did the Sages decide which branches to take on Sukkot?

In this lesson, we’ll study the verse in the Torah as well as the Midrash Halachah that derives the meanings of the words very carefully. We also use the words to understand not only which plants we take, but how we hold them as well.

Suggestions for Class Discussion:
Here are some suggested classroom activities for a classroom lesson, after the students have watched the lesson and answered the questions.
1. What do you think that we can learn from the words ביום הראשון – “on the first day” – about the taking of the Four Species?
2. Can a parent give his or her Four Species to use on Sukkot? Why or why not? How is this connected to the words of the Torah?

3. Why does the Torah connect the taking of the Four Species to happiness on Sukkot?

4. What is the connection between the Four Species and being “Before God” in the Beit Hamikdash?

How to Share the Lesson with Your Students
To use this lesson, you can access the editable version of the form with this link.
It will prompt you to make a copy of the form which you can save and share with your students. Feel free to add or change any of the questions, as you see fit.


Feedback
We’d love your feedback on this lessons. Please take a moment to send us an email and let us know how the lesson went with your students at feedback@kitah.org. You can view the lesson below!

Kitah Rosh Hashanah Lesson For Teachers: Simanim and Tashlich

Welcome to this free Kitah lesson prepared by Rabbi Johnny Solomon! We invite you to share this lesson using Google Classroom or any other online e-learning platform.

About this lesson:
In this lesson, Rabbi Solomon studies the sources in the Shulchan Aruch about why we eat special foods on Rosh Hashanah, as well as why we “cast” our sins into the sea during Tashlich. You can assign the lesson as homework, or as an in-class assignment (if the students have their own devices)

Suggestions for Class Discussion:
Here are some suggested classroom activities for a classroom lesson, after the students have watched the lesson and answered the questions.
1. Does your family have an unusual simanim that make special use of words either in Hebrew or English, or have some type of experience?
2. Divide into groups, and try and “create” three new Simanim that will have special meaning for us for this year: What foods would you use? What blessings would you offer.
3. What is the most unusual place you’ve done Tashlich? Did you feel like you “threw” your sins into the water?

How to Share the Lesson with Your Students
To use this lesson, you can access the editable version of the form with this link.
Click on “Use Template” in the top right corner, and save it in your Google Drive to share with your students. You can also feel free to add or change any of the questions, as you see fit.


Feedback
We’d love your feedback on this lessons. Please take a moment to send us an email and let us know how the lesson went with your students at feedback@kitah.org. You can view the lesson below!

Gemara Berachot Course Description

Course Description: The Basic Building Blocks of Gemara – Berachot Chapter 4

Course Name: The Basic Building Blocks of Gemara
Course Teacher: Rabbi Reuven Spolter
Course Details: Gemara Berachot Chapter 4 – Tefillat HaShachar
Pages: 26a – 28
For Grades: 6-8
General Course Description: The fourth chapter of Berachot is generally one of the first texts studied by beginning students as the enter the world of Gemara study. Through the study of the text of the Gemara, we will learn how Gemara study “works” – what questions does the Gemara ask, and how does it answer those questions. We will learn basic elements of the Amidah, as well as a very famous story that appears in this chapter.

The student will learn the following skills during this course: 

  • Text reading and comprehension
  • Key Gemara concepts
  • Differentiation between Tanaitic and Amoraic statements  (i.e. when is the Gemara quoting a text, and when is it asking a question or giving an answer)
  • Fundametal Gemara terms and basic vocabulary

The student will learn the following Judaic knowledge

  • Basic halachot about the Amidah for Shacharit, Minchah and Arvit including the times when they are recited, what happens when one makes a mistake, additions for holidays and other times, and more!
  • The basic structure of the Amidah
  • How one must act during Amidah

The student will understand:

  • Different understandings for the rationale behind the Amidah
  • How halachah stretches time for Amidah and other concepts
  • The complicated nature of Jewish leadership

Number of lessons: 20
Detailed Lesson Plans: A detailed lesson plan list is coming soon
Sample Lesson:

We are excited to present a sample of the first lesson in Gemara Berachot. You can progress through the lesson to get a sense of how we present and organize Kitah materials. To access the sample lesson click here.

Megillat Rut Course Description

Course Description: Courage and Kindness in Megillat Rut

Adina Blaustein

Course Name: Courage and Kindness in Megillat Rut
Course Teacher: Mrs. Adina Blaustein
Course Details: Sefer Rut
Chapters & Verses: Chapters 1-4
For Grades: 6-8
General Course Description: In this course, students will learn Megillat Rut. The study will be focused around the following essential question: What is the true meaning of Chesed?
Students will learn about the protagonists through this lens, understanding that Ruth, Boaz and Naomi are heroic in their embodiment of this trait. Students will grow more comfortable reading text in the original Hebrew and using text to support key ideas.

The student will learn the following skills during this course: 

  • Text reading and comprehension
  • Identification of key shorashim and their translations
  • Differentiation between דיבור ישיר  (words spoken by characters) and narrative
  • Quoting from the text to support themes and opinions

The student will learn the following Judaic knowledge

  • Plot and themes of Megillat Rut
  • Connection between Megillat Rut and other books in Tanach

The student will understand:

  • The connection between Chesed and heroism
  • How to apply the themes of Rut to his/her day-to-day life, and what it means to truly perform an act of Chesed

Number of lessons: 20
Detailed Lesson Plans: A detailed lesson plan list is coming soon
Sample Lesson:

We are excited to present a sample of the first lesson in Megillat Rut. You can progress through the lesson to get a sense of how we present and organize Kitah materials. To access the sample lesson click here.

Navi Yehoshua Course Description

Course Description: Entering the Land of Israel

Mrs. Adina Ellis

Course Name: Sefer Yehoshua: Entering the Land of Israel
Course Teacher: Mrs. Adina Ellis
Course Details: Yehoshua
Chapters & Verses: Chapters 1:1-10:14
For Grades: 6-8
General Course Description: In this course students will learn a significant portion of the book of Yehoshua, the exciting fulfillment of Hashem’s promise of giving the Land of Israel to His People.

The student will learn the following skills during this course: 

  • Reading Hebrew text 
  • General comprehension of the narrative flow 
  • Recognizing parts of dialogue 
  • Identifying repeating words or phrases in a unit
  • Recognizing the use of synonyms in Biblical text
  • Reading maps

The student will learn the following Judaic knowledge

  • Where sefer Yehoshua fits in the greater context of the Tanach timeline
  • The historical aspect of entering and conquering Eretz Canaan
  • The underlying life lessons and spiritual meaning embedded in the stories

The student will understand:

  • The significance of fulfilling a promise or commitment that has been made
  • The significance of the land of Israel in our lives, then and now
  • The concept of transitions and the importance of ceremony to mark different life events 
  • Interconnection between miraculous military success  and our relationship with and commitment to, following the word of Hashem

Number of lessons: 20
Detailed Lesson Plans: A detailed lesson plan list is coming soon
Sample Lesson:

We are excited to present a sample of the first lesson in Navi Yehoshua. You can progress through the lesson to get a sense of how we present and organize Kitah materials. To access the sample lesson click here.

Chumash Shemot Course Description

Course Description: The Journey from Egypt

Course Name: The Journey from Egypt
Course Teacher: Rabbi Johnny Solomon
Course Details: Sefer: Shemot
Parshah: BeShalach
Chapters & Verses: Ch. 15:22-16:26
For Grades: 6-8
General Course Description: In this course, students will learn about the fascinating journey of Am Yisrael from Yam Suf to Marah, Elim & Sin.

The student will learn the following skills during this course: 

  • How to read and translate biblical texts
  • How to pay attention to grammatical inconsistences
  • How to identifying key words in a verse
  • How to compare two similar biblical texts 
  • How to identify key words (milot manchot) in a verse
  • How to read and interpret Rashi’s commentary

The student will learn the following Judaic knowledge

  • The events that occurred from Yam Suf to Marah as described in the Torah
  • The rabbinic interpretation why Bnei Yisrael were reluctant to leave Yam Suf
  • The events that occurred in Marah as described in the Torah
  • Rabbinic interpretations about the events that occurred in Marah
  • The events that occurred in Elim as described in the Torah
  • Rabbinic interpretations about the events that occurred in Elim
  • The events that occurred in Sin as described in the Torah
  • Rabbinic interpretations about the events that occurred in Sin

The student will understand:

  • How Bnei Yisrael felt when they left Yam Suf
  • How Bnei Yisrael felt when they arrived at Marah
  • Why it was important for Bnei Yisrael to be tested at Marah
  • Why it was important for Bnei Yisrael to be given mitzvot at Marah
  • The biblical significance of the numbers 12 and 70 as reflected in the bounty of Elim
  • The significance of the Manna 

Number of lessons: 20
Detailed Lesson Plans: A detailed lesson plan list is coming soon
Sample Lesson:

We are excited to present a sample of the first lesson in Chumash Shemot. You can progress through the lesson to get a sense of how we present and organize Kitah materials. To access the sample lesson click here.

Mishnah Berachot Course Description

Course Description: Meet the Mishnah – Masechet Berachot

Course Name: Meet the Mishnah – Masechet Berachot
Course Teacher: Rabbi Reuven Spolter
Course Details: Mishnah Masechet Berachot Chapters 1 and 2
For Grades: 5-8

The student will learn the following skills during this course: 

  • Text reading and comprehension
  • Basic Mishnah vocabulary and terms
  • Identifying key words to help map out the Mishnah
  • Understanding the structure of the Mishnah
  • Identifying and explaining arguments in the Mishnah
  • Creating a chart to map positions in the Mishnah

The student will learn the following Judaic knowledge

  • The meaning of key phrases and verses in the Shema
  • How to calculate a halachic day
  • The structure of Shacharit and Arvit
  • Halachic concepts including לכתחילה and בדיעבד, העוסק במצוה פטור מן המצוה, מצוות צריכות כוונה

The student will understand:

  • The structure of the chapters of Shema, 
  • Why we recite each chapter of Shema each morning and evening
  • Different categories of blessings (long, short, etc)
  • The nature and significance of כוונה with regard to mitzvot 

Number of lessons: 20

Course Description: For a complete course description, click here (coming soon)

Sample Lesson:

We are excited to present a sample of the first lesson in Mishnah Berachot. You can progress through the lesson to get a sense of how we present and organize Kitah materials. To access the sample lesson click here.