HAFTR bar mitzvah event


The annual Middle School Bar Mitzvah Workshop for seventh grade boys at the Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway and their chavrutot was held last Wednesday evening. Fathers and grandfathers enjoyed the quality time spent with their bar mitzvah “child.”

The evening began with Rabbi Dovid Kupchik, menahel, welcoming everyone to this milestone event. He thanked the PTA Bar Mitzvah Workshop Committee under the leadership of the PTA Presidium (Deena Vashovsky and Mrs. Deborah Levine) as well as the chairpeople for the event (Barbara Kaufman, Gaby Muller and Deborah Levine). 

A special thank you was given to the rebbeim who joined in the learning and festivities (Rabbis Ari Glazer, Simcha Loiterman, Judah Hulkower, Ben Zion Kirsch and Yisroel Moshe Siff).

The participants were split into two groups and enjoyed sessions in a round-robin format. Whether they were part of Shel Rosh (of the head) or Shel Yad (of the hand), the “men” enjoyed dancing to the music of Shelly Lang and Friends and the dancing moves of Benny Amar. They learned how tefillin are made from Rabbi Akiva Oppen, Sofer S’TAM from Oppen Scrolls, and they were inspired by Rabbi Yisroel Moshe Siff through his presentation on what is inside the tefillin.

They also heard from an eighth grader, Eitan Markovitz, about how he marked his bar mitzvah by doing a special chesed project.  Other chesed projects were described in the packets everyone received.

The students all took pictures with their dads and/or grandfathers as they received the PTA gift of a new siddur.

HAFTR thanks Jason Meyers for arranging the professional pictures. The food from Carlos and Gabby’s was great and plentiful. This program is one of a number of meaningful ways HAFTR prepares their talmidim for becoming a bar mitzvah.

In a few weeks, there will be a bat mitzvah workshop for sixth grade girls.