Nov. 27, 2010

Jewish Education & Entertainment

http://www.j.co.il/

This website has five educational games: Language Match Game, Multilingual Word Search, Hebrew Hangman, My Jewish Coloring Book, and Israel Geography Game.

There is also a list of other websites, although all are basically a part of this website, with other topics that might be of interest:  The Jewish Trivia Quiz, The Hebrew Sign Maker, The Hebrew Language, Learn Hebrew Videos, The Jewish Wisdom Database, The Bible Quiz, My Hebrew Songbook, The Jewish Clipart Database, and 3 Year Jewish High Holiday Calendar.

Nov. 26, 2010

BabagaNewz



"BabagaNewz.com is an innovative, educational web site for Jewish middle school students and teachers. The web site will help our readers understand the values that are at the core of Jewish beliefs and practices.
BabagaNewz.com will encourage young people to explore Jewish values, traditions, life-cycle events, holidays, and Israel, from perspectives that are novel, hip, fun, thought-provoking, exciting and that will encourage them to continue these explorations with the full power of their imaginations and reflections."

This website looks like a great resource.  There are articles under the headers: Israel, Celebrities, 'Kid Power,' Videos, Science, Humour, Peoplehood, and History.  There are games, like Brachot Trivia, and English Hebrew Match Game, Puzzles, and something called Jewpardy.  Under Activities there are: Crafts, Recipes, How To, Board Games and Interactive (I wonder what that means?).   And at the bottom you can choose to navigate the site according to a particular holiday, the current parsha, or Jewish value.  Now that is innovative!  And last of all, in their music section, called JPod, they have all sorts of music.  I think I see some tefillahs, some holiday related music, and much more!

Oh, and I just noticed there is one more section, called Teachers, which seems to have articles or tutorials for teachers on how to use very new internet technology to make virtual bookshelves, webinars, wikis, pod casts, word clouds, etc.  I'm sure that will be useful for homeschool parents as well as teachers.

This definitely looks like a great resource!

*This post looks like it was published on Shabbos, because I had preset some posts to publish themselves and neglected to check which day would be Shabbos.*

Nov. 25, 2010

Akhlah: The Jewish Children's Learning Network

This site looks extremely interesting.  Here is a sampling of what they cover. Jewish Crafts, Worksheets, Tanach, Parsha, Yomim Tovim/ Jewish Holidays, Learn about Israel, Learning Hebrew, Jewish Biblical Heros, and Jewish Traditions. 

Of specific note is their aleph-bet resource!

"Akhlah, the Jewish children's learning network, is an important resource created to provide Jewish children and their families access to the prayers, stories and rituals that have bound Jews together around the world and through the ages. Akhlah is specifically designed for the youngest and least knowledgeable among us, while maintaining scrupulous attention to the details of the subject matter.
Children and others who wish to learn about Judaism will find that Akhlah offers a comprehensive yet non-sectarian perspective. Akhlah does not subscribe to any of the branches of Judaism, but celebrates them all. We wish to provide information about the traditions and practices of all the major branches of Judaism, for although the vagaries of geography and circumstance have spread these branches in different directions, when we look back, we share the common bonds of ancestors, history and language: these are the roots of our Tree of Life."

Nov. 24, 2010

Hebrew Vocab Quizzes with Pictures

This website has some fairly easy looking Hebrew vocabulary quizzes using pictures.   I'm not sure why, but the Hebrew fonts didn't come out for me... maybe something to do with my own computer, or with the age of the website.  If anyone finds that the Hebrew does show up properly for them, or figures it out, feel free to leave a comment here with tips/instructions. 

Nov. 23, 2010

Beit HaChatulim


A website about a conservative Jewish homeschooling family's experiences homeschooling children of various ages from 1996 through 2008.  The website is currently being rebuilt.  I would like to read through their experiences and suggestions sometime soon.  There is also a link to the Chevra Jewish Homeschooling List, which is an email list for Jewish homeschoolers of all denominations of Judaism.

Nov. 22, 2010

League of Observant Jewish Homeschoolers

"LOJH was a not-for-profit league of families designed to satisfy the growing demand for Orthodox Jewish Homeschooling. Although we are no longer active, the number of requests we receive about this topic is overwhelming. However, we believe the content we have collected on this site (over the years) is still relevant and helpful for many people."


Although this group is no longer active, I thought it was good to add, since it has some interesting resources about Jewish, Orthodox homeschooling that I'd certainly like to look through at some point.  If you find anything especially interesting there, please leave a comment here telling about it! 

Nov. 1, 2010

Lionden Landing

Lionden Landing 
Michelle blogs about her homeschooling family of three.  She writes about their homeschooling, as well as other themes and events in her family's life.  She's joined in with the Homeschool Diary, a blog carnival, that Jennifer began a few months ago (that I have dismally neglected... along with this blog, oy).   Michelle's daughter is currently learning the Aleph-Bet, and I really enjoyed reading about Michelle's new birthday tradition, as I've been discussing birthday traditions with my better half recently, trying to hash out what we want to do each year.  Please head over and read Michelle's blog!  I'm happy to have another to add to my (hopefully, if I can keep this up semi-regularly) growing list of Jewish homeschooling blogs.

Oct. 30, 2010

the mishnah project

 
The mishnah project is such a cool endeavor.  So, a long long time ago, in a far away land... the sages used to use tunes to help memorize the Mishnah.   The makers of this project recognized that memorization of Jewish texts is not so easy for everyone, and not always enjoyable.  They saw that the average person can remember lyrics to their favorite popular songs easily... and decided to tap into this great ability we all have, by putting the Mishnah to music... and pretty darn good music at that!  This is also a way of returning to the oral roots of Jewish tradition.  So, go on over and listen to a tune or two... I am as I write this, and humming along.

As a side note, does one capitalize words like Mishnah and Talmud?  Torah?  I'm not quite sure.

Sep. 21, 2010

Sukkot Activity Round-Up

A Mother in Israel has posted a great sukkah decorating round-up already; including graham cracker sukkahs, beautiful paper ornaments, bunting, kids painting ideas, and so much more!  I doubt we'll manage to get much decor up, between building the succah and getting ready for an in-law visit... but I hope that in the years to come we'll add until its the most beautiful sukkah ever!

Jennifer, over at Adventures in Mama-Land, posted a lovely set of pictures of their sukkah's evolution over the years, as well as a Sukkot themed poem (with PDF print-outs in Ashkenaz or Sephardi pronounciation)!

Finally, A Jewish Homeschool Blog has posted some Sukkot printables, including songs, coloring pages and games, for your children's pleasure.

I didn't have time to search for more, but if you want me to add a link, just leave a comment!  Chag Sameach everybody!

Ah, here is another Edible Sukkah idea!

Our Homeschool Diary #2

This post is part of the Our Homeschool Diary meme, but as we're unschooling thus far, I haven't really got a 'plan' for our week.  So I'm going to publish posts on Mondays with all the days of the week, and perhaps I'll remember to fill it in as the week goes by ;)

If you'd like to join the meme, head on over to her blog and snag that cute icon for your own blog (I think its for sharing, right Jennifer?)


Monday:  My father came over, and we went with the kiddos to view a condo (a spacious 3 bedroom, amazing to see such space in a condo in this area) in the neighborhood.  What was the lesson?  Well, a lesson for me, that we really still can't afford it.  But, at least there is something to aspire to, some time in the future.  We baked cookies that morning, and I showed Temima a bit more detail about measuring, since she is reading numbers now.  So, I could could tell her to fill 1 cup in the measuring cup, and she could.  I think she sort of grasped it.  And that evening we were playing a matching/memory game and I explained how to play with the 'real' rules, and we had a few goes of it, and she liked it a lot.  She really started being able to keep track of which cards we had already seen.   Oh, and also, she's been building sukkahs out of random things in our house, so I should put up a picture soon of what she made.

Tuesday: Temima, amazingly, played by herself for prolonged periods of time today, while I got some cleaning done before my mother-in-law arrives.  Our bathroom is now... well, definitely not sparkling, but at least it doesn't gross me out at first glance.  We went to the park, where Temima played with a group of girls, two older and two younger.  That was lovely to watch, how they all interacted and helped each other out and played together.  After I put Shua to bed, Temima and I played that matching game again... but this time I remembered to call the card's pictures by their Hebrew terms.  And then we spent some time with me writing out words on our white board and then reading the letters and the word to her, and then Temima would use one finger and wipe out each letter (drawing the letter, in a way, as she erased it).  That was pretty cool, because she instigated the whole thing, I was just doing what she told me to do.  Oh, and she can now dial the phone if I tell her which number to press!  Very cool.  Joseph is outside currently, in the dark, with our 14 year old neighbor boy, hammering away at the sukkah and hopefully getting the schach up.  Yay!  We have not decorated it at all, and I don't know if we'll get to it.  Its supposed to rain when we want to be eating out there, too.  And, to top it off, we have no idea where we are going to be able to store it afterwards, since we don't technically have our own garage space here. 

Wednesday:  Sukkot begins... hopefully we'll have schach by then.  Family is coming over.

Thursday:  Mother-in-Law arrives from out of country.

Friday:  Shabbat is coming, Shabbat is coming, Shabbat is coming... Shabbat Shalom!

Saturday: 

Sunday:

Sep. 15, 2010

I'm joining a Meme! The "Our Homeschool Diary" meme!

As you may have noticed by the number of links I include to her blog, I'm an avid reader of Jennifer's Adventures in Mama-Land... because I like her, we're friends in real life... and well, once you add a blog to your reader, its fun to actually read it! 

She's started a homeschool meme (what's a meme?) for us Jewish homeschoolers (or maybe its for any homeschoolers, since it's called "Our Homeschool Diary"?)  And I'd like to join in.  But, as we're unschooling thus far, I haven't really got a 'plan' for our week.  So I'm going to publish a post on Monday with all the days of the week, and perhaps I'll remember to fill it in as the week goes by ;)



If you'd like to join the meme, head on over to her blog and snag that cute icon for your own blog (I think its for sharing, right Jennifer?)  I'm going to park a copy right there in my handy sidebar ---->

And as I write this, the lovely song I learned from Jennifer is running through my head, but of course I have no idea how to let you know the tune that goes with it.  But the words are.... Sunday Monday, Tuesday Wednesday, Thursday Friday, then comes Shabbos... LOL.  So, I'll add in more details for each day as it happens and when I have the chance. 

Monday:  We rode bike/trailer down to the library to return some truly overdue books... and happened to stumble across a pile of not-yet-shelved books about the current set of chagim, which we promptly signed out.  I also bought a not microfibre mop, some animal crackers, much needed scotch tape, and shampoo at Shoppers in the nearby plaza.  So educational ;)  We had fun, fresh air, and new books.  Who could ask for more?  Also got some laundry done.  My sister came over for dinner, which was a simple - boil everything boilable and stick it on the table dinner - perfect for kiddies.  She helped me watch Temima while I put Shua to sleep - our first night of Daddy's new schedule of coming home late in the evening.  He's joined the gym!  Wow!  And he's starting a university course online next month, so we're practicing my nights alone ahead of time. 

Tuesday:  This morning I managed to get into the system and sign Temima up for the two classes she desires, despite the long wait-times!  Later, we rode over to Yorkdale Mall to meet a friend, ask a salesgirl about some crocheted play food used in a window display a while ago, and pick up a gift for a certain little boy with a special haircut scheduled for this Sunday.  We had some ice cream, read the letters off a mirror in a store while helping out said friend with her two girls, and discovered the joys of toy shopping with a child around ;)  Sorry sweetie, I bought you some things you wanted, and now its time to shop for the birthday boy.  When we got home, its a bit blurry, but I remember some fun typing a story out on our typewriter to illustrate, watching some the Yom Kippur G-dCast.com video, and eating dinner.  Oh, and I remember some alphabet candy thrown in as well.  Temima is loving exploring letters!  Oh, and the best part was that I finally bought a toy cell phone, and now I will NOT being giving the toddler my phone anymore, since he has programed a gazillion strange things into it already. 

Wednesday:  Duferrin Grove Park!  Yah!  Mud pitt and playground, here we come  Change of plans, we went out and did some errands instead.  Stopped at the library for a bit, picked up some scotch tape and a new mop.  It was a great day for me to bike around doing errands with the trailer, sunny and cool.  The mop kept the kids enthralled for a little while when we got home.  What is it with toddlers and mops/brooms? 


Thursday:   Visit mom at hospital.  Not much to say about this, except that it takes up our whole day. 

Friday: Are you ready for Shabbat?  No we're not, no we're not. We spent the day not getting ready for Shabbos.  I think that was a bit confusing for Temima, along with not having kiddush or challah and all of that.  In retrospect, I regret what I didn't do.  If the house had been clean and some food cooked, then Yom Kippur would have gone by a bit more smoothly.

Saturday:  Yom Kippur.  I think I'm going to fast... maybe drink if I feel headachy.  Wish me luck, first time in 8 years. So, the day didn't go as smoothly as I had hoped, and I think I'm getting an ear infection.  I didn't fast... or rather I tried fasting several times but failed, but after a small lunch I did fast until the end, and I felt some good feelings about denying my hunger for bigger reasons.  So... positive, I suppose.  I had a nice visit with a friend as well, which passed the time.   Did this suddenly become a blog about me??? Woops, back to homeschooling news soon, perhaps.

Sunday:  Gavriel Zev's Upsherin!!! 

Baby awake and I need to get to sleep. I'll add that linky/icon into my sidebar tomorrow night, I guess.  Thanks Jennifer for starting this out for us all :)

Sep. 13, 2010

Challah Crumbs



"ChallahCrumbs is a celebration of Jewish living. We offer creative ideas to inspire your family and enrich your homes. Our site is full of Kosher recipes, Jewish crafts and learning for parents and kids."
This website looks like a great resources for all of our little homeschoolers out there.  There are themed crafts, lots of recipes, book recommendations, Parsha and Holiday learning for families, etc.  A treasure trove!

Sep. 3, 2010

Parsha Activities dot Com



"A couple of years ago, I was elevated from the position of regular shul group leader to Parsha Man. This meant that instead of running all the programing for one age group, I was now in charge of teaching the parsha to every age group, ranging from three year olds to fourth graders.  My immediate response was to search the web for a source of parsha activities I could use every week for this new job.  As much as I searched though, my efforts were in vain.  I simply could not find any parsha activities online.  Nearly every week since then, I have been amassing my own arsenal of parsha games.  Some activities came from my own head.  Others are well known games that I simply connected to a parsha.  Family, friends, and youth directors were other useful resources.  Week by week, one parsha at a time, I slowly amassed what was the beginings of what one could call a parsha curriculum. 

"But my job was not yet complete.  For I knew that every week, countless group leaders around the world were facing the same problem that I faced several years back.  There was still no online source that gave you just what was needed.  Sure there were parsha summaries and parsha questions all over the internet.  But no activities.

"And that's what this website is intended to fix.  Parsha by parsha, it provides you with some interactive method of teaching about the lessons and big ideas from every week's laining. 
But it's far from finished, and this is where you come in.  Email your favorite activity to parshaactivities@gmail.comThis e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , and become a part of this wonderful project."

Sep. 2, 2010

Chinuch.org


"Chinuch.org is designed to enable Torah educators to share quality educational ideas and materials. Access to the best resources and inspiration from hundreds of mechanchim and mechanchos worldwide enhances the quality of chinuch everywhere. The program flourishes because of the generosity of countless educators like you who submit their valuable resources.By sharing the fruits of your labor to help others in the world of Chinuch, you are reaching thousands of students with each word, and are truly being M'kaim the words of Pirkei Avos: 'V'ha'amidu talmidim harbeh.'

Our mission is to facilitate the sharing of finished and raw printed materials, and to encourage networking ideas and solutions."

From Preschool to Highschool, and even Special Education, Chinuch.org has materials for every age, stage and subject of Jewish education.  This website is a bottomless resource of materials for home educators and school teachers, created by home educators and school teachers!  

Their main topic headings (with numerous sub-sections) are: Chodshei HaShana, Torah, Mishnayos and Gemara, Yahadus/Hashkafa, Hebrew Language, Interactive Classroom (Puzzles, Stories, Songs/Music), Yamim Tovim (Rosh Hashana, Tzom Gedalia...More), Navi'im and Kesuvim, Halacha/Dinim, Jewish History, Arts and Crafts, and Administrative Resources.








Sep. 1, 2010

Wow, there isn't a whole lot to write about

I've been contemplating what my next 'real' blog post should be... and coming up with blank blank blank, for weeks.  I decided to just start writing, and hope that something slightly interesting comes out.  I can't say that I have anything profound to say about homeschooling at this age, since four years old is barely school-age (Junior kindergarten didn't even exist when I went to school!).  I used to spend a lot of time reading about homeschooling philosophies and figuring out what I will want to do.  I found unschooling, and various interpretations of it, to be the most attractive.  I would love to research more... but there is no time in my day!  It seems like by the time my children are old enough to give me some free time... they'll be too old for any of the research I want to do to matter anymore.  It can be fustrating at times, thinking about everything that I want to do but can't get done.  Taking a moment to just play with my children usually brings me out of that funk and back to reality... because my children are just so wonderful to be with!

So, what have we been doing this summer... since nobody here is in camp this year?  Well, we've been traveling around the city (by transit), to our favorite parks, our favorites friends, and our favorite places.  Lots of ice cream, splash pads, wading pools, sand pits, farmer's markets, big friends, little friends, etc.  Experiments with Popsicle making. 

We had a period of reading some very science-y books, followed by a few visits to the Royal Ontario Museum.  Temima was very sure the dinosaur bones would come to life, and hesitated to cross the threshold into that exhibit area for a while.  The books were part of a series for children, about nature and science.  We started with one about dinosaurs, that we found by accident, and it was so good that we started borrowing more from the series in the following weeks.  Sun Up, Sun Down is a great one, explaining about how the sun and earth and moon all work, and planets, and all that.  These books were great because the pictures were easy to understand visually, and they had sub-stories mixed in with the science explanations that really kept our four year old captivated.

What has Temima been learning?  Despite my lack of interest in formally teaching much at this age, she is steadily recognizing more letters and numbers, and sight-reading her name.  She is constantly counting, and experimenting with more/less, as well as primitive adding/subtraction... all on fingers or with toys.  The other day she held two pretzels in each hand, counting them individually and then all together, and then said, "Two pretzels and two pretzels is four pretzels"!!!!  I think she's got all her colors now, but I don't know for sure.  Yes, other children knew many of these things at earlier ages, but without pushing her, I think she is steadily adding to her knowledge every day, and enjoying it as well.

What have we been struggling with?  Well, as parents, we've been struggling with a few things.  Temima is a deeply emotional person, we think, and that makes her very  loving and lovely, but also there is a difficult side to that.  She is very astute at reading emotion in others and seeing through attempts at manipulation/control.  Its unnerving sometimes.  The fun part of her ability is how we can turn traditional parenting methods into fun games for her... she love 'playing' reverse psychology!

What I have noticed recently is that when Joseph is home, she is more volatile, more quick to temper, less patient with her brother, etc.  I'm not sure why, yet.  Is it because my attention is divided while I'm trying to get 'adult' conversation in?  Is it her way of expressing unhappiness at how much of the time Joseph is gone at work?  Does he parent so differently that she sees a way to manipulate us when he's home?  I doubt that last one, although on a surface level it looks that way.  I think its a combination of the first two, and possibly something more that I haven't identified.  When I'm alone with the kids, everything seems to flow.  I rarely ever resort to 'discipline,' and even at times where I might feel I want to, I can usually re-center the situation in a fun or funny way so we can move on.  Figuring out what happens when Joseph is home is something that I think we need to really focus on because its difficult for Joseph feel confident about our parenting choices when he sees most of the negative side during his hours with us.

Do you have any similar experiences?  What happens when your children's Abba comes home?  Have you figured out how to solve this problem?  Leave your thoughts, experiences, solutions in the comments.  I look forward to reading what you think.
 

Jewish Homeschool Blog Carnival!

 Jennifer of Adventures in Mama-Land has gone and started a Jewish Homeschool Blog Carnival!

If she will forgive me for quoting,

"If you have blogged about anything interesting or noteworthy in your Jewish homeschool, please submit your post here.  Or you can link to it in the comments section below.  I’ll try to include everybody – I can’t imagine there will be a great big huge clamour, but it would be nice if some bloggers came out of the woodwork for this!"

I hope I have something to contribute before it closes.   If you've got something to contribute, send it over to that link up above, or write it in the comments of Jennifer's post.  This is all very exciting!

Aug. 31, 2010

What is your homeschool curriculum for this year?

Have you laid out plans for your homeschooling this year?  Jennifer of Adventures in Mama-Land has!  Add a description your family's plans for this year, however vague or specific, in the comments section, or leave a comment with a link back to your blog post about your plans for the 2010-11 schoolyear.  I'm excited to read what everyone is planning!

Adventures in Mama-Land :: Parsha Poetry!

The wonderful homeschooling ima, Jennifer of Adventures in Mama-Land, has begun writing lovely poems about the weekly Torah portions.  Not only does she write them for her own cuties, she posts them on her blog, and reads them aloud to the Shabbos Parties that she hosts!  (Hint, hint... any homeschoolers in Toronto should contact me for more info).  So, print them out, and read them at your Shabbos table with your little ones each week! 

Click here to read Jennifer's Poetry

Aug. 20, 2010

Musically Inclined? Love traditional Jewish music or songs?

Check out these three truly awesome websites.  Each one has compiled a database of Jewish music!

"Here is a convenient online resource for learning to chant the Hebrew liturgy of the Siddur (Jewish prayer book), whether you just want to brush up on your davening skills, learn to chant and sing the Shabbat services or prepare for your Bar Mitzvah or Bat Mitzvah!"

"Download, Learn and Sing: ShirHalev is your place to learn Jewish songs for all occasions"
- Songs for Holidays, Shabbos, Brachas, Davening, Sefardi

"The purpose of this site is to promote the proliferation of Nusach and to make a Nusach readily accessible to those who have a desire to learn and a desire to deepen their Judaism. This site is a volunteer work in progress."
- This website has recordings of the Haggadah, Megillat Esther, and Megillat Ruth, Megillat Eicha, davening for some of the high holidays, etc...

**Hat Tip to Jennifer of Adventures in Mamaland for these links (and many more to come, when I have more time!)** 

Aug. 19, 2010

The Free Siddur Project

The Free Siddur Project

"Welcome to the Free Siddur Project – פרויקט סדור חופשי! Here you will find resources for producing your own customized siddur...As I browsed around the net searching both in English and Hebrew I was unhappy to discover that their existed very few useful resources. What I wanted was one site where I could find the text of the תפילות (prayers), their translation and a transliteration of the Hebrew...This got me thinking: wouldn’t it be great if such a place existed....I feverishly began running through my favorite portion of the liturgy – Kabbalat Shabbat and Ma’ariv for Friday night. The Hebrew was fantastically easy to produce...."

The author of this website has created an archive of free, not copywrited, prayers/liturgy for anyone to download and create their own personal siddur.  My interest is piqued!

Aug. 18, 2010

The Behrman House Family Site

Behrman House Publishing publishes Jewish school books, as well as many other Jewish materials.   Along with their many publications, they have put together a great resource for families to learn together!  It is an interactive website called the Behrman Family Site, where you set up a family account, and spend time learning.  Topics include: Learning Hebrew, learning prayer, an 'ulpan,' and creating a 'family' (personalized) Haggadah.  They also have Hebrew learning games!  An Alef-Bet chart, holiday calendar, and Shabbat blessings to view and download.  And so much more!

Twebrew School


"Learning to read Hebrew has never been more convenient!
Here at Twebrew School you can learn to read Hebrew with our
Twebrew School Instructional Videos (note: as of now the most recent/last episode is listed first).

You can also learn more about each Hebrew Letter in Twebrew School Treats (note: as of now, the most recent/last posted is listed first).

You will also have access to Shabbat content as part of Twebrew School Shabbat."

Aug. 10, 2010

Our Jewish Homeschool Blog


Our Jewish Homeschool Blog is written by a homeschooling mom, with three children, aged 1-4.  She strives to homeschool from a creative perspective and with a strong emphasis on Judaism. 

Specific posts of interest:

Torah Home Education Conference

The Torah Home Education Conference is a yearly conference which takes place in Baltimore.   Organized by Avivah, of Oceans of Joy, it is a great resource for those who are not sure what their direction will be while homeschooling, who want to make connections with other Torah based homeschoolers, and learn about homeschooling from a Torah context.

Oceans of Joy

Avivah's blog, Oceans of Joy, has gained much popularity since she began writing.  She is mother to nine children, from infant to 16.  In fact, her two oldest are homeschool graduates!  They just celebrated their graduation this summer.  Avivah has been homeschooling for ten years.  She writes about homeschooling, raising children, parenting, nutrition, recipes, alternative health care, food preservation, gardening, and living frugally (and more, I'm sure).   She is an inspiration to read.  And she is also the organizer of the Torah Home Education Conference, which just finished its second year.

Aug. 9, 2010

Audio Archives

"The Dartmouth Jewish Sound Archive was established in 2002 as a repository of sound recordings for researchers and students. Please note, it is not a free music download site. If you are not a student at Dartmouth College or at Hebrew College, you will need to register and demonstrate a legitimate scholarly or research purpose. User accounts are good for 6 months and can be renewed if needed."

"The primary mission of the Judaica Sound Archives at FAU Libraries is to collect, preserve, and digitize Judaica sound recordings; to create educational programs highlighting the contents of this rich cultural legacy; and to encourage the use of this unique scholarly resource by students, scholars and the general public."

"The purpose of this site is to promote the proliferation of Nusach and to make a Nusach readily accessible to those who have a desire to learn and a desire to deepen their Judaism. This site is a volunteer work in progress."

           This website has recordings of the Haggadah, Megillat Esther, and Megillat Ruth, Megillat Eicha, davening for some of the high holidays, etc...

Chabad.org Kids!

Chabad.org has a whole section devoted to children.  There are stories, comics, videos, games, and more, all about the parsha, holidays, and more!  Its much more than I have time to explore tonight.  Hopefully, one day I'll have more time to add specific links within the site.  For now, the Itche Kadoozy Show is a great place to start, though.   Follow the linked image below to see more.


The Parshah Report - A Weekly Newscast Highlighting the Week's Torah Portion

TORCH-D on Shamash

TORCH-D is an email discussion list for Jewish homeschoolers who want to provide their children with a Torah-centered education.  It is the most long-standing list I have encountered, with posts going back more than a decade.  The list includes families with homeschooled children who are grown, and as such provides a wonderful resource from very experienced homeschooling families.  It is a place where homeschooling techniques, resources, activities, etc., can be discussed from a religious (Jewish) perspective.  Currently hosted by Shamash,

"Shamash: The Jewish Network, strives to be the highest quality central point of Jewish information and discussion on the Internet. Our mission is to provide state-of-the-art Internet tools to Jewish organizations and individuals who maintain discussion forums for the benefit of the Jewish community."

To subscribe to the list, send an email to listproc@shamash.org with subscribe torch-d [your full name] in the body.

Alternatively:
To subscribe, simply email: torch-d-subscribe@shamash.org
You may also subscribe through this web page: listserv.shamash.org/cgi-bin/wa?SUBED1=TORCH-D
To view the archives go to:    listserv.shamash.org/archives/torch-d.html
You will be asked to create a username and password and log into the system.

A note.  Some families have had difficulties subscribing to this list in the past.  If you are having trouble, you can try emailing Shamash for help, but don't give up.  Its a great list to be a part of.

Aug. 5, 2010

Parsha Projects

http://parshaprojects.blogspot.com/

"Crafts and snacks designed to teach preschoolers about the weekly Torah portion at home."

Yahoo Group :: JewishHomeSchoolers

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/JewishHomeSchoolers/JewishHomeSchoolers

"The focus of this list will be to provide homeschooling support and resources to Jewish homeschoolers of all levels of observance. ("messianic" is not an observance level--please search for a christian group.) Appropriate topics include curriculum choices, teaching tips, and holiday observances. This informal relaxed list is restricted and discussion will be limited to homeschooling and Judaism only."

Facebook :: Jewish Homeschoolers

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=257857838677&ref=ts

"Let's share our thoughts about homeschooling our children! Share your curriculum ideas for Limudei Kodesh and Limudei Chol, as well as tips for running a Jewish household while educationg your children at home."

Yahoo Group :: Jewish Orthodox and Homeschooling

Jewish Orthodox and Homeschooling

"This group will support Orthodox Jews who desire to homeschool their children. People who are interested in learning more about homeschooling children in a manner consistent with Jewish halacha are welcome to join and ask questions. We hope to have discussions on methods of homeschooling, how and what to teach, socialization, and how to manage your family's life while homeschooling. Please direct any halachic/hashkafic questions (sheilos) to your local (or not-so-local) Orthodox Rabbi."

Jewish Attachment Parenting Forum

This is a forum for women only, to discuss attachment parenting.  There is a forum in here specifically for discussing homeschooling.  

Jewish Attachment Parenting

"Welcome to the Jewish Attachment Parenting Forum, a mother-to-mother support forum.

This forum is designed to be a friendly discussion board to discuss, support, and advocate all areas of Attachment and Jewish Parenting. Our goal is to create a community of Jewish mothers or mothers-to-be who are looking to forge a close bond with their children. Through your direct or indirect participation here you agree to make a personal effort to maintain a comfortable and respectful atmosphere for our guests and members."

G-DCAST


"G-dcast is animating Torah for today!

G-dcast is a collective of Jewish filmmakers, artists and educators
who make quirky cartoons out of classic Jewish texts. You can scroll
through the entire Torah on their website and watch 55 very diverse
guests give 4 minute dvar Torahs in prose, poetry, music and even hip
hop! Every episode is different from the last.

Parents and teachers can download free curriculum guides with great
ideas for creative activities and critical thinking exercises. And new
in 2010, G-dcast is creating special holiday episodes for Chanukah,
Pesach and the fall Chagim."

Animated Talmud


www.animatedtalmud.com


"Animated Talmud “Introduction to the Talmud” is a teacher's dream come true.  Comprised of over 100 minutes of short animations which give the student an Introduction to the Talmud.  All the background knowledge is given, including the important vocabulary and learning style that goes along with it.  Although it is geared towards children on their “maiden voyage” into the Talmudic ocean, it is for everyone, adults included, who have never had the opportunity to be properly introduced to this important Jewish text. To start viewing the Animations, log on to www.AnimatedTalmud.com its free but you will need to sign up to the newsletter and get the password.  Any contribution to the support the program will be gratefully accepted and appreciated, enjoy!"

Adventures in MamaLand


http://ronypony.blogspot.com/
"In which a fourFIVE-year-breastfeeding Yiddishe supermama of four (2 big, 2 little!) writes unswervingly, cooks tenaciously, parents attachedly, gardens (semi-?) naturally, homeschools frugally, and navigates unfalteringly through the moments between the Kodak ones."

Introductions are in Order

Being this blog's first post, introductions are in order.  My name is Shira, and I have two children.   Temima is 4 years old, and Yehoshua is 17 months old.  I live with my husband, Joseph and our children, in Toronto, Canada.  While our children aren't old enough yet to officially call what we do homeschooling...we are planning to homeschool our children.  We tend to stand out in our community for not having enrolled anyone in daycare or Pre-K.  I am very excited to attempt to create this contribution to the still small, but steadily growing, community of Torah-centred homeschoolers.  

My ideas are not yet finalized, but my intentions so far are:  To create a comprehensive directory of resources for Torah-based (aka Jewish) homeschoolers.  This will include all sorts of media, as well as Jewish and secular subjects.  My second goal for this blog will be to have regular 'columns' and news about Jewish homeschooling.  Topics could include: homeschooling philosophies, experiences of particular families, homeschooling in the news, the ups and downs of homeschooling, and much more.

I am going to be experimenting for the time being, to explore how I want to organize the directory, so please excuse me for any confusion to come.

I am seeking any and all ideas for developing this blog as a community fixture for Jewish homeschoolers.  I am looking for links to websites, books, and other resources to include in this directory.  I am looking for guest-posters, who want to write about their family's experiences homeschooling, or about anything in particular related to Jewish homeschooling.  I'm looking for parents who would like to write a regular, weekly, or monthly, or just once-in-a-while column here.  Oh, and before I forget, I would love to find someone who has the time to create a wonderful header (and maybe a better name) for this blog!  So, if you would like to participate in this new beginning, simply post your idea or link or suggestion in the comments area, and I will get back to you!   Or send me an email: shirarocklin (at) yahoo.ca

Stay tuned for more to come!