Thursday, May 10, 2012

Jewish Farm School

Our next stop on our ancient history tour is the Holy Land. Mikro has already started dipping his toes into the reading material we have gathered. So when this field trip to The Jewish Farm School came up, which featured learning about woodscraft, sustainable agricultural practices and judaism, we jumped on it, even though technically we are still finishing off our last topic, Ancient Africa. What a fun experience!

We learned about the holiday of Lag B'Omer, which I had never heard of before.

Mikro's version of what he learned: "Back in the old days when Rome conquered Jerusalem, the Jews were not allowed to speak freely about their religion. So this wise man said to his friends, "Take a picnic and bows and arrows and lets go into the woods and do archery", but they were really meeting to talk about their religion. So today, people remember this by having archery contests, picnics and bonfires."

The kids made rainbow name tags, and had a little orientation session, in which they watched a demo of fire making with a bow drill. (It was too wet for the planned bonfire.) Then they went out in the woods and gathered sticks for making bows and arrows, which they later shot at a target that symbolized a wish they wanted to come true.

They had a delicious lunch of tahini, carrot sticks, apples, raisins, rice cakes and pickles, which was totally gluten and casein free, so Mikro could actually eat with his friends. That is a rare and much appreciated occurrence. And there was yummy herbal tea for the parents.

There was also lots of playing in the woods, and a parade on the zip line (Mikro's first time on one), and a dance similar to the maypole, where the kids braided ribbons around the pole, and in the process tied up their educator. They had a blast. We saw some familiar faces and met some great new people.

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