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!

Kitah Classroom Graphic

Registration for the 5781 Kitah Classroom is Now Open!

We are very excited to announce that expert Torah and technology educator Rabbi Jonathan Simons has agreed to serve as the first Kitah Classroom teacher. Rabbi Simons is an experienced Torah teacher and is also a trained consultant in educational technology. Most importantly, he recognizes the importance of connecting with his students and giving them the best possible learning experience. You can read Rabbi Simons’ bio on our Staff Page.

With Rabbi Simons’ position secured, we are very excited to officially open registration for the 5781 Kitah Classroom.

Dates and Schedule:
The first Kitah Classroom class begins on Monday, September 7th, 2020
. (We know that this is Labor Day in the United States, but remember that all KITAH classroom lessons are asynchronous. While the lessons will be assigned on Monday, your child can study at any time throughout the week.)

Courses:
The first class will study two courses weekly:
1. Chumash Shemot with Rabbi Johnny Solomon
2. Mishnah Berachot with Rabbi Reuven Spolter
Each course is twenty weekly lessons. With the completion of those courses, students will begin new classes.

Cost:
Kitah Classroom is priced with families in mind. The cost is $99 per month per family.

To register your children please fill out the contact form here, and we’ll be in touch!

We’re looking forward to seeing your children in the classroom!

An Innovative New Online Jewish Education Platform to Help Address the COVID crisis – Our First Press Release

For Immediate Release:

Contact Information:

www.kitah.org 

Rabbi Reuven Spolter, Founder and Director

Email: spolter@kitah.org

Tel: +972-54-220-4347, (US number in Israel: +1-​347-434-9212)

Rabbi Reuven Spolter, Kitah Founder and Director

Kitah, a new Online Jewish Education Initiative, to Help Schools Weather the COVID Crisis

KITAH unveils an exciting online Jewish Education platform to help Jewish Day schools and Jewish parents address the uncertainty they will face over the coming year.

YAD BINYAMIN, ISRAEL – Last March, when the COVID crisis struck shutting down cities and communities around the world, schools scrambled to shift to distance learning. Teachers and students adapted to Zoom classes and virtual schedules, utilizing online teaching resources to bring their students meaningful learning experiences.

Teachers quickly realized that they could not expect the same level of attention and focus from their students in Zoom lessons that they did in person. Judaic teachers discovered that while their counterparts on the “secular” side could access a wide range of digital teaching resources, very little ready-made online Jewish material was available for their own instruction.

“It was a struggle,” said Adina Blaustein, a high school Tanach teacher at the Fuchs Mizrachi School in Cleveland, OH. “I couldn’t just email a worksheet and expect the students to manage on their own. And there simply was no available digital teaching material that we could easily assign our students.” 

Recognizing this need, a group of English-speaking Jewish educators built an online educational platform aimed at giving Jewish studies teachers powerful digital educational tools.

Titled Kitah (which means “class” in Hebrew”), the platform is modeled after the world-famous Khan Academy “flipped classroom”. In a “flipped” classroom, teachers assign students lessons via YouTube which they watch on their own. When the students meet in class, a teacher can follow-up, enhancing and expanding on what the students have already learned.

Kitah is built on this innovative educational model. However, instead of teaching math or science, Kitah focuses on classic Jewish subjects including Chumash, Navi, Mishnah and Gemara. Courses combine YouTube videos prepared by seasoned Jewish studies teachers with Google Forms, making the lessons easy for teachers to use in classrooms around the world.

“We built Kitah to allow teachers to assign home-based study focusing on skills and text reading,” explains Rabbi Reuven Spolter, founder and director of Kitah. “A student can watch a lesson once, or as many times as needed, in order to answer the included questions.” This allows students the time and focus they need to properly understand the Hebrew text, greatly enhancing and improving the classroom experience later on. “A teacher does not have to start from scratch. Students enter the classroom having been exposed to the basic meaning of the text, allowing teachers to focus on broader themes and deeper lessons they otherwise might not address.”

This coming school year, with the significant possibility of further community closures, Kitah offers schools the peace of mind that, should they need to shift to distance learning, they will have digital Jewish studies lessons ready to deploy.

“While we did not build Kitah because of the COVID crisis,” explained Rabbi Johnny Solomon, Kitah’s educational director, “Our platform is certainly an important option for schools looking for Jewish online learning tools.”

Spolter agrees. “In the end, we know that we’ve built a tool that will help Jewish children learn and connect to classic Jewish texts. If we can help Jewish schools and teachers weather this incredibly challenging time, that will be an added bonus.”

For more information about Kitah, contact Rabbi Reuven Spolter or visit their website, Kitah.org.