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FAQ

General / Set Up

How is Aleph Champ different from any other reading program?
Aleph Champ is similar to any other mesorah Hebrew reading program in the way that it teaches students how to read starting with the aleph bet, then kumatz aleph uh and on to reading. The ONLY difference is the motivational division of colored levels. Any teacher who can teach reading can teach Aleph Champ. It may take some time to get used to the new system, but in the end the teacher will appreciate the excitement the program will generate in their students.
What ages/grades is Aleph Champ appropriate for?
We suggest starting Aleph Champ in the 1st Grade with your 6 year old students and continuing until the 4th or 5th grades. It can of course be used for older students just joining your school in grades 6 or higher.
How many teachers would you suggest I hire for my school?
If students learn Aleph Champ as a class, the teachers will need 1 assistant each to take care of a second reading group. If Aleph Champ is taught as a school-wide venture, one teacher per level, plus 1-2 aleph champ tutors should be sufficient. If you feel you need more staff you can always hire more.
How do I get volunteers?
Parents and student graduates make great volunteers.
What is the role of the volunteers in the classroom?
Not all students learn well in a large group and would do better to learn one on one. Volunteers can be used as tutors to work with catch-up students who join mid-year or mid-grade, special-needs learners, advanced learners or for large groups that need to be divided
Is it necessary to hire a head teacher for Aleph Champ?
If you have the luxury of sufficient staff, a head Aleph Champ teacher is definitely useful in the larger schools. The head teacher responsibilities are: Testing students, pulling students out at random to read with, supervising the entire room, keeping tabs on teachers
How do I introduce Aleph Champ to parents?
The Aleph Champ program is a great selling point for your Hebrew School. Just pulling out a set of colored readers, workbooks, flashcards and medallions and explaining how the system works is a great introduction to Aleph Champ.
Do you have an Aleph Champ overview I can send to parents?
Aleph Champ is a motivational structure to excite kids in learning how to read Hebrew. It is based on the color coded Karate system. Students begin as a white aleph champ, learning the aleph bet and continue until they reach the black aleph champ level, and graduate as fluent readers.

Teaching

How do I teach Aleph Champ?
Aleph Champ should be taught the way any reading group is taught. There should be time for frontal teaching, reading out loud, flashcard review, timed reading/flashcard review and workbooks. Games can be incorporated as the teacher sees fit.
How much time should be allotted for Aleph Champ?
Aleph Champ can be taught in a 30 or 45 minute period, depending on how long the Hebrew School day is.
How many levels should my students pass per year?
There is no rule to how many levels students should pass per year. The average is 2 1/2 levels per year. In this way they can start the new year at the beginning of the level they 1/2 completed the year before. You will always have exceptions.
Which levels do you suggest each grade should aim to pass per year?
We suggest that 1st grade should aim to pass the first two levels, white and red. 2nd grade - orange and yellow. 3rd grade - green and blue. 4th grade - purple and brown.
How do I introduce Aleph Champ on the first day of school?
It is best to make a school wide assembly, present the program with enthusiasm and excitement. Remember, you create the environment. Hand out white medallions to all new champers.
How do I test students at the beginning of the school year?
The last page of each reader makes a great test to see which level a child should be on. If they can read that last page with no problems - they can move to the last page of the next book...and the next, until they get stuck. That's the level they should be on.
When do I know if a child is ready to pass a level?
A child can pass a level when they have 85% - 100% accuracy. Know your student. Hold the students to their own personal ability. A stronger reader should be held to a higher level of accuracy. Let them stay on the level 2 weeks after finishing the book before testing to ensure fluency.
When do you suggest that I give out the medallions?
We suggest giving the medallions out at the beginning of the level. When the students pass they receive the medallion of the level they are beginning next.
How do I best present the medallions to the kids?
Make a big deal! Have the student stand up and quiet the rest of the room. Announce the new Champ and have everyone clap as you place the medallion over the student's head.

Troubleshooting

How do I place students who have fallen behind over the summer?
The beginning of the school year needs a few weeks before students are placed on their levels. Tell students they have 1 month before their testing date. Provide them with the lower level books and flashcards to review as well as workbook pages. IMPORTANT: To avoid distressing students who may have regressed a bit over the summer, stress that this is a transition time. Just because a student needs to review in the orange level does not make them an orange aleph. When the month is over, all students should be tested and placed in their levels.
Some students entering Hebrew School for the first time are slightly advanced in reading. Which level should they begin with in Aleph Champ?
If students come to Hebrew School with some reading skills we suggest testing them using the last page of each book method. If students can read but do not know the names of the letters and vowels, place them on a higher level (the level they can read at) and tell them that they will need to learn their letters and vowels for part of the time but they will not get their medallions until they master the first levels and are tested. DO NOT tell a reading student that they are now on white level. It is a big turn-off and quite depressing.
My students are on mixed levels. How do I accommodate the different levels?
To begin with, do your best to keep the bulk of the class moving along at the same pace, even if it means spending extra time on a level. For the exceptions - student who are super motivated or with  learning problems - either get volunteers to help out or send students to a level suitable to them - as long as the age gap is no more than 2 years.  Typically the quicker students can work alone with the teacher telling them the name of the new letter or vowel and then reading with them when the rest of the class is working in their workbooks. In general, when more than one level is in the same classroom, each group should begin with silent yet audible reading with the teacher walking around and "listening in". Then each group can work in rotation: 1. Reading with teacher out loud 2. Workbooks 3. Flashcard timed review with the teacher keeping an eye on all groups.
What do I do with a student who comes in middle of the school year?
We suggest that parents be told of the level their child's class is on and partner with the school set up a plan for catching their child up. They should commit to home review and if possible can be offered another day to come to school and be tutored for additional cost.
How do I deal with a student who starts Hebrew School in the higher grades?
See above. Be careful NOT to place older students who just started in a 1st grade class. Keeping the student together with other new comers in the classroom with a tutor is ideal.
How do I deal with a student who is struggling with passing the levels?
One-on-one tutoring works best with students who have learning issues. If this does not seem to help, we suggest you have a meeting with the parents to find out if the child has difficulty reading in general or any other learning disabilities. If so, try to work out what is more important to the parents, that the child have a meaningful Jewish experience or struggle through reading. Special exception can be made to allow the student to pass without being fluent just to keep their spirits up.
How do I keep the students inspired in-between levels?
Stripes are a great way to reward students between levels. Make a big deal out of them. See teacher's guide.
What do you suggest for home review?
Home kits can be used as home reading and flashcard review. Almanacs can be sent home for homework help.
What do you suggest for summer review?
Aleph Champ Almanacs are suggested for at home review.

Materials

I'm on a tight budget. Which materials are most crucial for me to run Aleph Champ.
The readers and aleph bet flashcards are most crucial, followed by workbooks and large flashcards, medallions and home kits. Rather than purchasing the entire starter set, you can begin with the lower level materials and as the months go buy purchase the next levels.
My students are slightly advanced in reading. What do you suggest I order?
Order a few sets of readers and test students on their reading. Order materials only after a few weeks when you are confident of their levels.
My students are beginners. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the starter set for all schools starting out. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
My students are on mixed levels of reading. What do you suggest I order?
A starter set will accommodate all levels to begin with. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I have a school of 1-5 students. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the 1/2 deluxe starter set. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I have a school of 5-10 students. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the deluxe starter set. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I have a school of 10-30 students. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the deluxe starter set. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I have a school of 30-60 students. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the deluxe starter set to begin. The books can rotate between classrooms if Aleph Champ is taught at different times during the day. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I have a school of over 60 students. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the deluxe starter set to begin. The books can rotate between classrooms if Aleph Champ is taught at different times during the day. As time goes by your needs will become more clear and you can purchase individual items later.
I home school my child. What do you suggest I order?
We suggest the home school starter set.
What is the purpose of the Reading Books?
Reading Books should be used to teach students how to read. All of the letters, vowels and reading skills will be found in the reading pages.
What is the purpose of the Workbooks?
Workbooks are meant as reinforcement of the reading books. Simple and creative writing activities force students to use the newly developed skills they have learned in their readers. Workbooks make a great quiet center for review and allow the teacher some time to work with student individually.
What is the purpose of the Medallions?
Medallions are used as a reward and status symbol. We suggest keeping them in the classroom for students to wear during Aleph Champ time and sending them home only once they have earned their new medallion.
What is the purpose of the Flashcards?
Flashcards make for great review and game materials.
Can I buy individual items?
Everything can be purchased separately on our website.

Shipping

Where does my package ship from?
All packages ship from New York.
What shipping carrier do you use?
We ship using USPS. Generally priority mail flat rate boxes and envelopes.
How long does it take for my order to ship once it's placed?
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How long is shipping in the US?
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How long is shipping to UK? Canada? Europe? Australia?
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