Second Grade Field Trip to Shofar Factory
In preparation for the holiday of Rosh Hashanah, our second graders traveled to a “Shofar Factory” in Columbia, MD. Upon their arrival, the students were seated in an outdoor classroom where Rabbi Baron began a discussion of which animals are considered kosher, permitting their horns to be used as a shofar. The children learned that in order for an animal to be kosher it must have split hooves and chew its cud. They were shown an actual deer hoof in order to demonstrate the meaning of a split hoof. The rabbi then explained the distinction between an animal horn or antler which is solid (keren) and a hollow animal horn (shofar). The children were given the opportunity to handle a set of deer antlers, which are an example of a solid set of horns. The outdoor portion of the experience concluded with a short hike leading to an enclosure housing a live ram (whose horns are suitable for the making of a shofar).
The students then proceeded indoors where they were given a hands-on demonstration of the process of making a shofar. Each class returned to school with their very own shofar which they will continue to sand and polish in the coming days. In the classroom, a follow-up writing lesson occurred through which the children recollected the steps in making a shofar and wrote them in Hebrew in sequential order.