Buddies Louie (2nd) and Yonathan (8th) make Sukkah decorations during our recent buddy program.

Our Second Innovation Day Will Feature the Cardboard Challenge  

A parent recently told me that he was proud of a shift in the school he had noticed over the last couple of years. He said the school feels more dynamic, that we were willing to try new things, move on when we see that things are not working well enough, tweak them when they still have potential, and build upon them when they are making a difference. This was high praise and truly an accurate description of the hard work the entire staff has been putting in to always ensure that we teach children, not subjects. It is a value that requires constant innovation. 

Last year we introduced our very first Innovation Day when we unveiled our newly designed Makerspace. Next Sunday, November 3, 3:00 - 5:00 p.m., we will host our second Innovation Day. We will once again focus on fun, hands-on learning that builds creative and innovation skills among our children and, this year, parents as well. Besides the many wonderful  activities like robotics, knitting, coding, lego building and more, we will have our first ever Cardboard Challenge, open to everyone! 

The Cardboard Challenge is a playful and inspiring way to foster creativity in children (and adults) through a simple process called creative play. Through creative play, kids engage their imaginations and open their minds to what's possible - and then they turn their ideas into something real. In this process, children learn to develop and test their own ideas, take chances, solve problems, get input from others and become better creative thinkers. This is really what happens in many of our classes daily, from preschool through 8th grade. On Sunday, November 3, we will all get to do it together! I hope you will join us. Please help us spread the word and invite your friends, neighbors and community members. RSVP here.
Shabbat Shalom!
Dr. Eliezer Jones
Head of School  
From the Day School      
A Grandparent Reminisces About Being a Day School Parent
by Miriam Kass, Principal
It was wonderful to welcome over 100 grandparents and special friends to school last Friday morning. Grandparents and Special Friends Day is always exciting at Akiba. Moving the event to the middle of Sukkot proved to be a welcome change by many, and the perfect weather (compared to last year's blizzard conditions!) was appreciated by all. Instead of putting on a performance, we chose to invite our guests to accompany the students to regular activities and classes. The morning included a joyous Hallel, the recitation of Psalms that concludes the morning prayers on major and minor festivals, including Sukkot, when grade school students, staff and their guests beautifully joined voices. Following Hallel, students and guests proceeded to morning classes, and many reported how much fun it was to participate in the learning. The event concluded with a brief presentation about the new L'Dor V'Dor Society from our Director of Development Levi Zeffren and then a chance to have a snack and leave a note for a student in the Sukkah. 
Janet Resnick works on an activity her grandson Stuart helped created in Mr. Salk's 1st/2nd grade class.
While there were many memorable moments from the day as I observed students guiding their guests through Hallel or from one class to another, I was particularly moved by Janet Resnick's remarks to her fellow Akiba grandparents and special friends. With her permission, I am sharing them here:

"I must say that when Eliezer first asked me to speak today, I thought of the iconic scene from My Cousin Vinny when Marissa Tomei testifies that all of her relatives are mechanics. So in that vein, if you ask me, "Janet, were you a Day School kid?" my answer would be "No, but my husband was a day school kid, my three children were day school kids, and - I am proud to say - two of my grandchildren are day school kids."


The Blue Room Is Working on Blueprints
After constructing their classroom Sukkah using recyclables and natural materials, the Blue Room children are continuing their exploration of how things are built. They began by learning about blueprints and how they help with construction. Each child is independently deciding and drawing a plan for what they would like to construct. With their blueprints in hand, the children will build, using various materials, and witness how their creations move from two dimensions to three. 
In anticipation of Simchat Torah, the Blue Room kids visited the Torah at Congregation Rodfei Zedek. Here Talia gets to hold the yad, a pointer that makes it easier to read from the Torah scroll.
Sarah shows her special friends how to have a good time in the Purple Room
during Grandparents and Special Friends Day.
Teacher Spotlight
Pie-Making Tips and a Favorite Pie Recipe
by Susan Carton, Preschool Teacher

Pie has made me famous. 

As the 2017 Blue Ribbon winner of the  South Side Pie Challenge, I was featured on the South Side Weekly radio show, in the Hyde Park Herald and at the 61st Street Farmer's Market doing a pie demo.

Everyone wants to know how to make a good pie crust.  

With this year's South Side Pie Challenge happening  next week, not to mention Thanksgiving around the corner, here are some of my pie-making tips, as well as a favorite recipe.

Day School      
Kitah Alef formed Hebrew letters with their bodies.
In Thursday's Music class, the kids in Kitah Alef were able to name over 25 different instruments and had a picture taken with all the instruments they named on the board.

Preparing for Playing Instruments in Music Class
Now that the Chagim are over, grades 3-8 have begun learning their instruments in Mr. Castle's Music class. Grades 3/4 started their first couple notes on the recorder. Grades 5/6 have begun their bucket drumming course. They started with some simple rhythms and hand coordination. 7/8 grade began playing the ukulele. Before getting into chords, they have been working on tuning, proper positioning, and some single note playing.  
Grandparents & Special Friends Day in Mr. Salk's 1st/2nd grade: Nataniella and her grandmas and aunt all worked on an activity called Dinosaur Data.
Kitah Bet enjoyed an "outing" to the Sukkah even though it was a bit cold...
Rabbi M's Kitah Gimmel and Daled sing Kabbalat Shabbat.
The 8th Graders Israel-Trip Fundraising Efforts Are Featured in Chicago Jewish News
Lilah, Ezra, Alexis and Verdit with their current Bears Raffle, see below.
Day School Kids Work Hard for Trip to Israel...
Eighth-graders at Akiba-Schechter Jewish Day School are moving full steam ahead with fundraisers for their graduation trip to Israel in May.
The Hyde Park students are selling Trader Joe's flowers for Shabbat, raffle tickets for fourth row seats at a Bears-Giants game, and brownies and rugelach for neighbors. Read on...
Raffle wraps up on October 29. Drawing takes place October 30!
Art with Dara
1st grader Sam shows off his leaf rubbing.
8 Questions for an 8th Grader
We continue our series of featuring one of our 8th graders in each issue of the Kibitzer. This time, it is 
Anna Copeland :
  1. Since when have you been at Akiba? I have been at Akiba for seven years.
  2. What neighborhood do you live in? I live in Skokie.
  3. What do you hope to accomplish in 8th grade? How is being an 8th grader different from your previous grades at Akiba? I want to survive 8th grade and place into good high school classes. 7th and 8th grade are very similar. The only difference is that I miss the older grade.
  4. What is your favorite subject at Akiba and why? My favorite subject is Art. I won't have Art class in high school so I want to enjoy it while I can.
  5. What do you think is special about Akiba? What do you particularly like and why? Akiba is special because of the tight-knit community that comes with being in a small school. I really like that we get to know the teachers more than just at a school level.
  6. If you have had your bat mitzvah or are preparing for it, what did you learn from it? I learned from my bat mitzvah that it's never too early to start planning.
  7. When you're not at school or doing homework, what do you like to do? When I'm not doing school stuff, I'm almost definitely dancing. Actually, even while I'm doing school stuff I'm probably dancing. On the rare occasion that I'm not doing either of these things, I'm reading a fantasy book.
  8. Do you have any idea yet of what you want to be when you grow up? I have no clue what career I want to have. Sometimes I think I want to do something with animals, other times I think I should be some type of lawyer, and other times I want to have jobs that are even more random.

The Friday, October 18 Day of Learning was generously  sponsored by Elyce and JP Bader   
in honor of Ezra Seraph Bader on the occasion  of his Bar Mitzvah.
Mazal Tov!

The Friday, October 25 Day of Learning was generously sponsored by the Ring Family
in honor of the Preschool Teachers.


RSVP via evite that was sent out. 
Questions to PTO, please. raddad

Seeking Shoe Donations!
The Chesed Club, under the guidance of Mrs. Crook, is thrilled to launch their 5780 Shoe Drive. Once again they are asking you to drop off shoes you are no longer using. They will be donated to the Chicago Center for Torah and Chesed, which welcomes all kinds of shoes in any size. A big thank  you to Art teacher Dara Henning, who decorated our  shoe collection bin, which you can find in the atrium. We hope to use it for many years!
Mazal tov

Bar Mitzvah

...to Ezra Bader (7th)  and his family on his Bar Mitzvah!
Dates to Remember
Wednesday, October 30
Picture Retake Day

Sunday, November 3
3:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Thursday, November 14
Parent/Teacher Conferences
No School for Grades 1-8 
Preschool and Kindergarten in session until 12:00 p.m.

Friday, November 15
Professional Development Day
No School

Monday, November 18
6:45 - 8:45 p.m.
Koval Distillery
5121 N. Ravenswood, Chicago

Tuesday, November 19
Chill out: Helping kids cope with stress and anxiety (and the role the internet and social media play) - a w orkshop for middle schoolers & their parents
6:30 - 8:30 p.m.
@ Akiba

Wednesday, November 27
Thanksgiving Feasts (Preschool & KDG)
8:30 - noon Thanksgiving Feasts 
12:00 p.m. Dismissal Preschool & KDG
3:30 p.m. Dismissal Grades 1-8, no after-school programming, no late bus
Thursday & Friday, November 28 & 29
Thanksgiving Break
No School

October 25, 2019  
Volume 16, Issue 5
Candle Lighting: 5:35 p.m.
Parasha: Bereisheet
Affiliated with the Associated Talmud Torahs and supported by the Kehillah Jewish Education Fund