On Thursday, June 4, Ben Porat Yosef’s first through seventh grade students celebrated Author’s Day. In preparation, the students had been immersed in learning about different authors and styles of writing.
The morning began with students meeting acclaimed author Johanna Hurwitz, author of over 60 children’s books. The students discussed with Ms. Hurwitz her inspiration for ideas for books, and were delighted to hear stories about characters she created. Afterwards, the students participated in active learning sessions, with classes of different grades working together to augment their learning. First grade, which had been studying graphic novels for their final writing cycle, brainstormed, drafted, revised and edited their own work. They then shared their efforts with “book buddies” from the seventh grade, who were learning about and creating their own graphic novels as well. Second grade students shared their creative books, based on animal research, with other students in first, third, and sixth grades who, in turn, shared their own original poems. Fifth graders shared their original poems with the fourth grade students, as well as sharing their recent research papers about European history. In conjunction with the younger grades’ week-long Hebrew Book Festival, Shavua HaSefer—when students spent the week reading many different books in Hebrew—each class participated in special Hebrew literacy activities. Older students read Hebrew stories to students in the younger grades and then worked with their younger colleagues to create an original comic in Hebrew.