Highest level of chesed
By Dina Rothman
On Thursday, Dec. 22, I was privileged to join some of my eighth grade classmates in Shulamith on a chesed trip. Our first stop was to Bobbie’s Place, a unique chesed clothing store, which gives free clothing to families who are experiencing financial troubles. The owner of the store spoke to us about how the store works and why she opened it. She explained that because Bobbie’s Place looks like any other store, complete with a cash register for check out, the children who benefit from the store generally have no idea that they are being given the clothing for free.
We took the clothing that people donated and divided it up. We also hung up all the winter clothing. It was a great experience and really made me appreciate all that I have.
We then went to the house of Rebbetzin Brog, the daughter of Rabbi Avigdor Miller, zt”l. We sat down in her dining room and she told us about her father, Rabbi Miller, and how he made sure that his children received a Jewish education. She told us that when she was a young child, she and her family moved to Europe to get a Jewish education, and before the Holocaust they returned to America. It was so incredible to be able to speak to such a special person. It was a very memorable trip, and everyone who went gained a lot from the experience.
First grade simcha
First graders at celebrate a simcha, receiving their first siddurim. Presentations featured Shabbat-themed songs such as “Shalom Aleichem” and “Lecha Dodi.” The girls performed in pairs and impressed everyone with their beautiful singing and exceptional choreography. Joyce Yarmak, principal of the Lower Division, addressed the audience, speaking about the importance of transmitting our mesorah to the next generation. As each talmidah was called to the stage to receive her siddur, the pride, confidence, and absolute joy of the ba’alot simcha lit up the auditorium! The event ended with coffee and refreshments served in the multi-purpose room, and each girl received a framed photograph, Shulamith lunch bag, and scrumptious cookie.
Special Bat Mitzvah event
Sixth graders were joined by their mothers and teachers at a Bat Mitzvah gala which began with an uplifting cantata that celebrated the role of Jewish women.Mothers and daughters then had the opportunity to participate in three different workshops: they studied Torah together with Morah Chana Schwartz, learned about the mitzvah of challah and braided challot with Morah Shoshana Fischman, and danced joyously with Sima Gefen. Shulamith thanks morah Chani Pollak and Morah Tali Spector for preparing the girls for their cantata, and morah Chana Schwartz for coordinating every aspect of the event.
Torah comes alive for 4th graders
Shulamith fourth grade girls visited the Living Torah Museum in Boro Park for a hands-on educational experience. The museum tour began with Torah Animal World, where the girls saw all of the animals listed in the Torah in lifelike form, and were intrigued to learn which seven wild animals are actually kosher. The next stop was the Perek Shira room with all the animals mentioned in Perek Shira on display. Finally, the museum director rought the visitors to a room filled with ancient artifacts from various time periods in the Torah. The girls were mesmerized by the world’s smallest kosher sefer Torah and the oldest menorah. Volunteers were chosen to spin a dreidel from Greek times. This trip brought to life much of what the fourth graders have been learning in limudei kodesh this year.
They danced! They sang!
SIX eighth graders joined 50 survivors in a pre-Chanuka celebration at the Cedarhurst JCC. On their arrival, Rebecca Aaron, Sarah Antonelli, Jenny Lifshitz, Bailey Shapiro, Bryna Stern and Talia Zin helped serve lunch, including sufganiyot for dessert. When the music began, the girls encouraged the seniors to join them on the dance floor, waltzing in pairs, doing the horah, and laughing with their partners. After tea, the girls sang “Oh Chanuka,” “Maoz Tzur,” “Al Hanisim” and “Hatikva,” and almost everyone in the room stood up and joined in.
The scent of Moshiach
The Shulamith gym was filled with the aroma of ketoret as students of grades 3 to 8 made the bracha of Borei Minei Besamim and enjoyed a special presentation by Machon HaMikdash. A Powerpoint featured pesukim from the Torah that mention the spices in the ketoret.
Groups of students delighted in a hands-on activity in which they ground a mixture of spices into powder using a mortar and pestle. Every girl took home a souvenir of a small packet of ground spices and a card with the words of the mishna that are said every Shabbat, “Pitum HaKetoret.” Mr. Frenkel pointed out the fascinating fact that while the United States of America is only 240 years old, the Mishkan and the Batei Mikdash were in existence for over 1300 years. Of course, we are in Galut for over 1900 years and we eagerly await the building of the third Beit Hamikdash and the chance to watch the Kohanim kindle the Ketoret once again.