Visitors to the classroom

I have been struck this year by the number of visitors we have had to our classroom. We love having visitors and making new friends. So far this year we have had Chris, Aisling and Madison visiting us on work experience. A number of Mums and a Grandmother came in to help us with our knitting. The Community Guard has been in to see us twice. Paul comes in to us regularly to talk to us about the ‘Do It In Memory of Me’ mass. We had two visiting teachers Ms.McN and Ms. H and a visitor from the Department of Education. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to all our visitors, who made our school year so much more interesting and enjoyable.

Beginning on the 3rd May we are having a visitor from Junior Achievement. She will be coming in to teach us about the world of business over five weekly, forty five minute lessons. This is a regular event in the school and I know the children will enjoy it.

Later in the month, Simon is visiting to present a Passover Meal. This is an annual event for 2nd class, which has proved hugely enjoyable in the past. I know you will hear all about it from the children at the time. I thought you would be interested in a little more information about what happens on that day.

The presentation takes about two hours. The desks are moved so that it feels like we are all sitting round a big table. There is a lot of singing and high spirits. The enjoyment of the celebration brings the children closer together.

Traditionally this special meal is a happy family occasion which is held in Jewish homes on Passover. Through this ceremony, the history of the Jewish people is told. Jesus was celebrating Passover at The Last Supper.

Simon will bring flat bread or matzah crackers, parsley or watercress, horse radish, haroset (applesauce mixed with nuts), eggs and juice.

The story of Passover is told in words and by the food on the table.
*Bitter herbs symbolize how bitter and hard these people found their lives as slaves in Egypt.
*Charoset, a paste made of apple and nuts represents the mud bricks which the slaves were forced to make.
*A hardboiled egg reminds the Jews of a New Life of Freedom.

On the table there is also flatbread, salt water and wine. The Bible tells us that when the Jews escaped from Egypt, they did not have time to bake proper bread and could only make the bread that did not have time to rise.

Salt water is a symbol of the tears which the slaves shed.

The meal ends with a search for a piece of flatbread which, earlier on, has been hidden.

The children do not eat much as the food is mostly mentioned is in small quantities and some of it is bitter or salty. But the meal is punctuated with several lively ‘toasts’ in fruit cordial.

Partaking is the Passover meal helps the children making communion to understand the links between the Passover Meal, The Last Supper and what happens at Mass, when at the Offertory, The Last Supper is revisited.

Hope you find this informative,

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