Chumash Homework – Rosh Hashanah Text Questions

Here are a few questions I had when I read the psukim on Rosh Hashanah in Vaikra.

Rosh Hashanah is a big holiday, why is the text so plain?  Even though it wasn’t the New Year there is a lot of other stuff that makes up Rosh Hashana.  The שלוש רגלים have much longer and more in depth explanations, why isn’t Rosh Hashanah explained?

Since at the time it wasn’t the New Year of the calendar what is Rosh Hashanah all about? (It’s not explained in the text.)

There are no specific sacrifices mentioned in the text.  This is the only holiday (not include the laws of Peah and Leket – which is not a holiday) that is mentioned that doesn’t have a list of sacrifices attached to it, what’s up with that?

Rashi comments on the words “זכרון תרוה”.  He brings up the “binding” of יצחק saying that it was an important moment in the Torah (so its worth remembering) and it talks about a Shofar (at the time it was just a simple ram).  So we should blow the Shofar in Rosh Hashanah.


Navi Final Project

I made a PowerPoint on The Beginning of ‘שמואל א for my final project in Navi class.  I had a very good time this year learning about ‘שמואל א with Mrs. Menashe.  My PowerPoint shows content that we learned in the beginning of the year.

I hope that you enjoy and learn from my work.

Reader’s Journal 28

I just finished reading Demigods and Magicians Percy and Annabeth meet the Kanes, by Rick Riordan.  This book has three short crossover stories between Percy and Annabeth (Greek Demigods) and Carter and Sadie Kane (Egyptian Magicians).  A theme is this book is working together.  These mythological teens have to embrace their differences and put them together to beat a common enemy (who is also trying to mix the mythologies/magics).

Here are three quotes (one from each story) that display ‘working together’.

Story number 1:  The Son of Sobek – Percy/Carter crossover.

I folded my wings and dove for the crocodile.  When I reached the necklace’s clasp, I turning back to human and grabbed hold.  All around me, the hurricane roared.  I could barely see through the swirl of mist.  The current was so strong now, it tugged t my legs, threatening to pull me into the flood.

Percy created a hurricane so Carter could get to the magic necklace and get it off the crocodile monster.  They wouldn’t have been able to beat him/it if they didn’t work together.

Story number 2:  The Staph of Serapis – Annabeth/Sadie crossover.

Meana aedei thea!” She chanted the lines Annabeth had taught her. “En . . . ponte pather algea!

Annabeth winced. Sadie’s pronunciation was pretty bad. She’d gotten the first line right, more or less:  Sing of rage, O goddess. But the second line should’ve been: In the sea, suffer misery. Instead, Sadie had said something like: In the sea, suffer moss!

Fortunately, the sound of Ancient Greek was enough to shock Serapis. The god wavered, his three-headed staff still raised. “What are you–”

“Isis, hear me!” Sadie continued. “Athena, to my aid!” She rattled off some more phrases–some Greek, some Ancient Egyptian.

Meanwhile, Annabeth sneaked up behind the god, her eyes on the dagger still impaled in the monster’s shell. If Serapis would just lower his staff…

In this scene, Annabeth teaches Sadie some Ancient Greek phrases and has her distract Serapis while she sneaks up on him.

Story number 3: The Crown of Ptolemy – all four together

Annabeth and Sadie shouted magic commands in unison. The funnel cloud of magiv intensified around the circle, hemming in Setne, who was shriveling rapidly. The crown of Ptolemy rolled off his head. Carter stepped forward and threw his glowing rope.

As soon as the rope rouched Setne,, a flash of light blinded me.

When my vision returned, Setne and the rope were gone. No magic lights swirled. The vulture goddess had left my mind. My mouth no longer tasted like dead hyena.

Annabeth, the Kanes, and I stood in a loose ring, staring at the crown of Ptolemy, which lay sideways in the dirt. Next to is sat a plastic bauble the size of a goose egg.

In the final story, all four demigods/magicians confront Setne (the bad guy) together. Percy hosts the Vulture goddess Nekhbet and distracts Setne while Annabeth, Sadie and Carter set a trap to kill/beat/contain him.

Reader’s Journal 27

I am (re) reading Neverseen, the fourth book in the Keeper of the Lost Cities  series, by Shannon Messenger.  One of the prominent themes in this book is discovery.  There are many secret identities is Keeper of the Lost Cities and many of them are revealed to Sophie and her friends in this book.


“Fine,” he whispered.  “Have it your way.  You want my name?”

It took Sophie several seconds to remember to not.

“Very well, them.”  Mr. Forkle paced the room twice more.  When he finally spoke his voice had turned soft and whispery, a ghost in the shadows.  “You know me as Sir Astin.”

Mr. Forkle revealing one of his identities to Sophie was a very big milestone in the book.  Mr. Forkle is the member of the Black Swan who tweaked Sophie’s genes and posed as her next door neighbor while she was growing up with humans.  He was always disguised himself by eating rukleberries so his he looks like an elderly human.  When he reveals his identity it shows that he trusts Sophie and sees her as an “equal”.

Whale Watching 2016

Today the sixth graders (with Ms. Haakanson and Morah Reut) went on a whale watching trip.  We drove up to Bellingham and left on a ship/boat.  We were out on the water for hours and were in Canadian water before we saw any whales, it was really awesome when we did.  At first we saw a few porpoises, but we couldn’t actually see them, just the tops of their fins.  The real action was when we “ran” into three orcas/killer whales!  They seemed to be a family.  We saw them eating.  It looked like they caught a porpoise and were eating it right in front of us.  We saw their fins a lot, but occasionally one would jump partially out of the water.  Not like it was doing a trick or anything, but it was really cool.

One of the people who worked on the boat (named Mark) told us that they weren’t native orcas.  He told us that the natives only ate fish, but these orcas would eat seals and porpoises.  He also explained that even though the two types may look nearly identical they hadn’t interbred in over 700,000 years! (Something like that, I forgot the exact number, but it was a lot!)  Their DNA is totally different, its almost like they’re different species altogether.

Not only was the point of the trip (seeing whales) amazing, but (at least in my opinion) the boat ride was really fun.  It was kind of like riding the public bus (that kind of bonding experience), but for hours!  We did all kinds of things including play cards, play mafia, talk,  hang out, move around the ship and make friends with one of the crew members.  We “met” Mark (the crew member we befriended) when Bodhi, Eli and I were disagreeing over the rules of Hearts.  Someone said that the rules of the “House” (or boat) should be what we play by, so we went and asked a crew member (Mark) to settle the argument.  After that we started talking to him whenever he wasn’t doing something else important.  Another thing that happened was that Mark told Eli that if he could hold plank (on him elbows) for five minutes, he could have a bag of cookies for free.   (I wasn’t there when the bet was arranged so I’m not positive if that’s exactly what happened.)  Eli held plank for five whole minutes and got the cookies!

I think that the whale watching trip was awesome for so many reasons:  We got to see whales! (I had never seen a wild whale before today!), we had a great class bonding and fun day, and it was an overall fun trip.

Reader’s Journal 26

Right now I’m reading Winter, the fourth and last book int the Lunar Chronicles, by Marissa Meyer.  A theme that is shown through out the whole series, especially in this book is the struggle for love.  All four girls (the books are named after each one of them) have someone who they are willing to fight for.  This sense of devotion is mutual between the couples.

The following quotes are bits and pieces of a scene where the Jacin is forced to kill Winter.

“… Then I will send Jerrico to deal with the princess, and I do not think he will be as gentle with her as you would have been.”

Jacin choked back his misery.  It would do him no good.

The thought of Jerrico–the smug and brutal captain of the guard–being given the same order made his blood run cold.

“Will you complete this task for me, Sir Clay?”

He bowed his head to hide his despair, though the show of respect nearly killed him.

“I will.  My Queen.”

That was the scene where Jacin tells Levana that he will kill Winter.  He agrees because he loves her so much that he would rather that he do it than let Jerrico kill her.  (It doesn’t make much sense unless you know more context)

Jacin’s other hand abandoned her hip.  She heard the ring of steel as the knife was pulled from the scabbard.  Winter shuddered and kissed him harder, filling it with every fantasy she’s every had.

Jacin told Winter that he was going to kill her.  Then they both confess their love and start kissing.  That was where Winter thought she was going to die by Jacin’s hand.

She stared at him, dazed.  What had he done?

Winter;s knees fave out.  Jacin caught her, sliding her down the enclosure’s bars.  Her hand landed in something warm and wet seeping out from underneath the short wall.

“You’re all right, Princess,” Jacin murmured.  “You’re all right.”

“Ryu?” Her voice broke.

“They’ll think the blood is yours.”  He was explaining something, but she didn’t understand.  “Wait here.  Don’t move until I turn out the lights.  Got it? Princess?”

With out the proper context this makes no sense.  Jacin didn’t kill her, her stabbed a wolf (Ryu) who was standing behind Winter and faked her death.  That was the true sign of love.  He thought he was going to kill her but then risked his life to save her and make it look like he had killed her.  (I know it doesn’t make very much sense if you haven’t read the book.)

Reader’s Journal 25

I am reading Winter, the fourth book in the Lunar Chronicles, by Marissa Meyer.  One of the main themes in this book is madness.  One of the main characters Winter, is crazy.  Winter is Lunar but she hasn’t used her gift (bioelectrical manipulation) in years so she has Lunar Sickness.  Lunar Sickness causes a person to hallucinate and become truly crazy.  Here is a quote that describes how Winter copes with her madness.

It was at her shoulders now.  Her neck.

Even over the popping and cracking of the ice, she heard the cut or flesh.  The burble of blood and a muffled gag.  The hard slump of a body.

The cold has stolen into her chest.  She squeezed her eyes shut, reminding herself to be calm, to breath.  She could hear Jacin’s steady voice in her head, his hands gripping her shoulders.  It isn’t real, Princess.  It’s only an illusion.

Usually they helped, these memories of him coaxing her through the panic.  But this time it seemed to prompt the ice on.  Encompassing her rib cage.  Gnawing into her stomach.  Hardening over her heart.

She was freezing from the inside out.

Listen to my voice.

Jacin wasn’t there.

Stay with me.

Jacin was gone.

It’s all in your head.

Winter despises her stepmother’s (Queen Levana) trials.  In this quote a man was being executed.  Winter was hallucinating that she was freezing.  To calm her self she envisioned her longest and best friend (with whom she is in love) Jacin comforting her.  Even though her method to calm herself didn’t work this time, Winter’s reaction to this hallucination shows that she has accepted her madness and still stands by her decision (not to use her gift).