Bright Beginnings Chumash Workbook – Parshas Lech-Lecha – Part 1

The Rabbi Meyer & Leya Zanitsky Memorial Edition
Written by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz and Rabbi Yosef B. Rawicki
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The importance of language mechanics in Talmudic learning.
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Description of Bright Beginnings Chumash Workbook:
The Bright Beginnings Workbook was developed over a thirteen year period in Yeshiva Darchei Noam of Monsey and is designed for classroom use at the grade level when children are first introduced to chumash. In addition to its use in a school setting, this can also be utilized at home should parents wish to enrich the Hebrew skills of their children. We have also found it to be an effective tool for adults who have a limited background in Judaic studies, and even for yeshiva graduates who were taught chumash by rote in their childhood.

The coloring and fonts of the words on the translation sheets are designed to draw the learner’s attention to accurately match the root word (shoresh), and the prefix/suffix to its respective meaning.

There are three worksheets for each Pasuk, each designed to support the synchronized manner in which languages are taught:
  1. Match the Shoresh – Helps the children learn and retain a growing list of shorashim.

  2. Color the Prefix/Suffix – To develop an understanding of how the “lego pieces” of the Hebrew language click together to form more complex words.

  3. Match the Word – Is the “ah-ha” moment when the learners apply the shoresh recognition of sheet #1 and the language skills of sheet #2 to recognize the actual words as they appear in the chumash. This third worksheet also serves to provide context to the individual words – a critical component in language acquisition.

Skill-Based Learning

This method is based on the concept that children are served best when they are first taught the basic structure of Lashon HaKodesh (Hebrew language). This colorful workbook introduces the learner to the meaning and usage of the most common shorashim (root words) and the shimushim (prefixes and suffixes) that are used to conjugate the root words.

Thirty years of experience in education – as the rebbi of the weaker track of eighth grade, and later as the dean of a growing Yeshiva and the Director of Project Y.E.S., a nationwide program designed to assist teens-at-risk, have led me to the inescapable conclusion that failure to attain rudimentary language skills is by far and away the greatest educational reason children don’t succeed in school. I recommend that you download the 3 columns below that I wrote for Mishpacha Magazine a few years back for a more comprehensive treatment of the value of skill-based learning.

It is my hope and prayer that this workbook and future volumes will help children acquire the language skills that will allow them to become independent learners who develop a lifelong love for learning.

Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

Rabbi Yakov Horowitz is the founder and dean of Yeshiva Darchei Noam of Monsey, and founder and Director of Project Y.E.S. He is recognized throughout the Jewish community as an authority on raising children in these troubled times. Rabbi Horowitz released more than a dozen parenting CD’s and authored two books, Growing with the Parsha and Living and Parenting (Artscroll).

Rabbi Horowitz was awarded the 2002 Rockland Educator of the Year Award, and received national recognition as a recipient of the coveted Grinspoon-Steinhart Award for Excellence in Jewish Education. The Covenant Foundation has awarded Rabbi Horowitz with the prestigious 2008 Covenant Award, presented to outstanding Jewish educators in North America.

For more information about Rabbi Horowitz, visit his website at www.rabbihorowitz.com.