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Self Paced Hebrew At Home for 2020-2021

Self-Paced Hebrew at Home is the name of our midweek Hebrew program for our 2nd-7th Grade students. Below are the details you need to know for your child to join in and get started successfully.

Where and when does the Self-Paced Hebrew at Home meet?

The Self-Paced Hebrew at Home program will be held onlinLe on Zoom (the link is below) on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 5:00-5:45pm. In early September we asked all of our families to choose the day that worked best for them and we've used the information to put together our groups. If you don't remember what day you selected, feel free to email and we can confirm the day we've assigned to your child. We ask that once the program begins we try to avoid swapping days, so if you need to make a change, we ask that you do so ASAP.

I know that students are grouped together based on where they are now in terms of their Hebrew skills. How did you decide what group to assign my child to?

The majority of our students participated in an online assessment experience that we held over the course of three weeks. We used that information, coupled with what know about your child as a learner and with the day you selected to attend the program to create our groups. If your child did not have a Hebrew assessment, we relied on our previous experience with them to assign them to a group.

How will my child know what group they are in? And how do they get there?

When your child logs into Zoom (the link is below) they should rename themselves with their grade and their full name. For example, 3Sally Smith. This will make it easier for us to sort them into their small group for their first session. Beginning next week, your child will see the list of breakout rooms displayed when they first enter the call and if they choose to, they may select their room on their own rather than waiting to be moved there. But we will always be on hand to assist with their placement in the correct breakout room.

Why are there older or younger students in the same group as my child? What if my child doesn't feel like the group you've chosen for them is a good fit?

The Self-Paced Hebrew Program has always been multi-age, although we are mindful to keep the range within a grade or two. This structure gives us more opportunity to match students with others who are starting in the same place and who learn in similar ways. You and your child shouldn't focus on the ages or grades of the students in the group but rather on whether or not the group feels like the right fit.

And speaking of right fit, this is our 6th year of Self-Paced Hebrew and one thing we have learned is that often groups work on paper but aren't the best match when we get started teaching. So there may be some shifting around for the first few weeks. If your child feels like they might be in the wrong group, please send an email and let us know. Our teachers will also be providing feedback that may result in some restructuring during our first few weeks.

How big are the groups? And who are the teachers?

Last spring we learned that our online setting presents some opportunities when it comes to Hebrew and this year we are taking advantage of them. The first is the size of our groups. This year all of our 2nd graders and many of our 3rd graders will begin the year in pairs, which we know will be a huge benefit for those just starting to learn the fundamentals of Hebrew decoding. All of our groups are capped at six students as we begin the year, which will allow our teachers to make sure that everyone gets the focus and attention they need to continue to build upon the progress they've made.

Our second opportunity is to harness the talents and enthusiasm of our OT teens. We have always had teens working in our Self-Paced Hebrew Program. We have seen again and again how our younger students respond to them and how our teens work incredibly hard to bring creativity and energy to their work. This year we are able to welcome even more high school students on to our staff because our online setting. These teens have already had their first training about teaching Hebrew and we will continue to work with them throughout the year.

We have a number of familiar OTRS teachers joining us online on both Tuesdays and Wednesdays, including several who will be working from college campuses around the country. That's another advantage to our current setting. We are able to draw upon the talents of those educators living an easy drive from OT as well as those who are physically far from home but just a click of the mouse away.

I remember receiving a login last spring for ShalomLearning, which was where my child was able to review material and practice their Hebrew. Are we doing that again?

We will be using ShalomLearning this year. It provides a space for our students to build upon what they learn with their teachers and reinforce their skills. They'll find assignments posted on their dashboards and you'll receive emails from the teachers about what they should be working on. We will be sending login information for the ShalomLearning Hebrew Platform in early November, once we are sure our groups are all settled in.

Wed, September 22 2021 16 Tishrei 5782