Pre-1A through Second Grade focused on communities for their Social Studies focus this year, and their learning proved so much fun that they wanted to share the day with parents and friends!

Kol Yaakov weaves whole school focus on all major subject areas throughout the year so students do both research and project work in all areas. Younger students focused on communities and began their study in September with a trip to the Long Island Fire Fighters Museum to find out what fire fighters do in our community and how they keep us safe. Boys also visited the mayor’s office to see what the mayor of our community does. Great Neck Plaza Mayor Jean Celender took students on a tour of City Hall, including the court room, explaining legislation, town meetings, and garbage trucks, and gave boys a close view of the city’s snow plows. Some classes visited the post office and others watched community worker videos as well as reading books on the topic.

Teachers brought it all together with project work in November when students chose their community worker of interest, wrote their own “research paper,” and then built their own LEGO “building” to create an actual KY Community! Mrs. Shemtov’s Pre-1A class and Morah Bracha Katz’ First Grade class constructed a fire station, police station, hospital, mayor’s office, and school, and proudly presented their community flanked with adjoining research papers and pictures this past Wednesday at KY Community Day. Boys came dressed as firemen, policemen, construction workers, and healthcare workers but, by far, the busiest boys of the day were the “KY Bakers and Grocers” from the KY Bakery and Grocery Store, who were in charge of “selling” baked goods. Our community included a lemonade stand as well, and boys took turns working as “bakers” and “grocers” with baker hats and aprons, passing out bakery chocolate chip cookies, popcorn, and lemonade to community visitors.

Mrs. Hekmati’s Second Grade class did their own spin on community day and focused on another element of community – the family. Her class did something different and explored their own families, conducting interviews with older family members and creating their own family trees. Boys wrote up their interviews as their own family research project and presented some of their family history “stories” to parents at KY Community Day. All classes displayed LEGO buildings, family trees, and matching research papers fair-style so parents could peruse and enjoy the children’s work.

By the end of the day, the Bakery and Grocery were completely cleaned out of baked goods and lemonade. Boys took brooms and swept up their bakery area because that’s what community workers do – they help keep their community clean!

 By Shoshanna Friedman

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