D’var torah Parashas Va’eira
Parshas Vaeira begins “pay back time”. after Pharaoh enslaved the Jews for many years, he is now getting his punishment!
This will lead up to Y’tzias Mitzraim-the exodus of Egypt.
This is also the beginning of the birth of the Jewish nation.
We have a Mitzvah to mention Yetzias Mitzraim – the exodus from Egypt, daily!
Why is this so important that we are commanded to mention it daily?
Rabbi Tzadok Hakohen explains as follows;
The Jews at the time of Yetzias Mitzraim were on the 49th lowest level of Tumah- impurity [the lowest being the 50th level].
Nevertheless the Jews were redeemed!
Why? Answers Rav Tzadok Hakohen: it is never too late. We are never “too far gone”. We can ALWAYS do Tshuba, and Hashem will accept us.
This is such an extremely important message that we need to remind ourselves daily, hence the Mitzva to mention Yetzias Mitzraim- the exodus of Egypt, daily. He also mentions a fantastic idea. We know that Moshe Rabeinu went up to heaven and spent 40 days there with Hashem. Hashem told Moshe that there will be a man Rabbi Akiva who will be even greater than Moshe!
Rabbi Akiva reached the 50th highest level of K’dusha – Holiness . Moshe only reached the 49th level of holiness!
Why? How is this possible that Rabbi Akiva could attain a higher level of Holiness than Moshe Rabeinu?
Answers Rabbi Tzadok: because Rabbi Akiva was a Ba’al T’shuva a Chozer B’tshuva. Until he was 40 years old, he had not learned Torah, and actually DESPISED Torah scholars!
Says Rabbi Tzadok, only a Ba’al T”shuva can attain the highest level!
This, says Rabbi Tzadok, is why we MUST mention Y’tzias Mitzraim, daily. The message is so important. We can always return to Hashem and he will always accept us, as long as we do T’shuva .
Rabbi Yaakov Kuritsky
Dear SIHA Family,
Today was a monumental day for SIHA. Coincidentally, our new playground opening occurred simultaneously with Rosh Chodesh Shevat and great weather. Chodesh Shevat is all about seeing the potential in life. Shevat’s theme is the tree (aka tree of life, tree of knowledge, eitz chaim he – our Torah). The small bud of SIHA was really viewed as a beautiful vibrant tree today with all our classes filled with shining neshamot, smiling joyously, due to their new play hub. When this playground venture was proposed a few years ago, no one honestly fathomed its actual fruition. Only due to the dedication of three amazing parents the potential became a miraculous reality. Today we saw the fruits of that labor of what can happen when school partners with our devoted parents-true joy. This real volunteer effort took a tremendous amount of time but our exemplary parents; Norbert Shtaynberg, Yaniv Iunger, and Carmit Cohen were rewarded with the true experience of joy that emanates from seeing hard work paying off especially done voluntarily as chesed and especially for our children. Carmit specifically championed this effort with keen awareness of every detail to make sure today was a truly lasting memory. From balloons to snack gift bags and even outdoor play things given out prior to all students. Today was a nachat and kidush Hashem. My favorite part was Carmit’s reminding me of the shechiyanu bracha needed to be said. Words can never thank everyone enough; especially towards Hashem Who allowed us to get here to begin with. Actions, dedication, and Chesed initiatives, I believe, is how we can move ahead to truly show thanks and multiply the spiritual joy palpably felt today.
We entered into a new chapter today and I for one am excited to see what miracles Hashem has for us in store tomorrow, weeks, and months ahead.
Chodesh Tov SIHA!!
Dr. Chana Uzhansky
Miss Esti wants to commend Natalie Fromchuk for doing a great job at her script alef bet work
EXTRA, EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT!!!
We had another busy week in 2nd grade. In this weeks Parsha V’airoh we studied the first 7 of the 10 plagues. The first letter in וארא is a Vav the second letter is an Aleph. In Hebrew every letter has a numerical value; Vav=6 Aleph=1. 6+1=7 There are 7 macot-plagues discussed in this weeks Parsha. We were learning all about Hacarat Hatoiv. Being grateful and appreciating what we have. The children wrote beautiful compositions which are proudly displayed on the bulletin board outside our room about what they are grateful for. Since Moshe (Moses) was saved by being put in a basket in the water which supported him when he was a baby,Hashem did not let Moshe bring the first plague of Dom-blood or the following 2 plagues, as Moshe would have to hit the sand. The earth covered the wicked Egyptian overseer whom Moshe killed. As both the earth and the river were kind to Moshe. Hashem did not want him to offend them by hitting them to bring a plague. The Torah teaches us to be grateful for every favor we receive. Hashem directed Moshe to be considerate to the water and soil, which have no feelings, in order for us to learn how we must be grateful to our parents, Hashem and our friends. We celebrated Rosh Chodesh Shevat on Thursday with Fruit Bites as a treat,as the 15th day of Shevat we celebrate Tubeshevat-new year for trees. ( this year it falls out on Jan.28 .during mid winter break) As a Shabbat treat on Friday the children all got gummy frogs.(the second plague) Shabbat Shalom!
Sorry for delay, if not too late here is a little synopsis of 3rd grade judaics this week:
This week had a few highlights starting with the learning of gematriot (Hebrew numerical value of each letter) and the very unique holiday of Tu Bish’vat, the birthday of the trees, in preparation to the new month of Shvat. The celebration of this New month was topped by a special Brachot party where each student ate one of each categories of food and said a bracha loud and clear. We learned the laws of Brachot, how and when to say it.
We also learnt the power of the word Amen. Using the gamatriah, we saw that amen had the same numerical value as 2 of Hashems names.
In Parshat Vaera we loved to see the story of the 10 plagues come to life with the beautiful felt board. We can wait to hear the end of the story next week.
Oh, what another wonderful week we had here in 4B! We bagan to discuss the various mourning days that come up on the Hebrew calender. By now we are already pretty familiar with the Chagim and when they all come up. We celebrated the first day of the new Hebrew month, the month of Shevat with a smashing
Brachot party. The goal of the party, other than ofcourse to celebrate the start of the month/ Rosh Chodesh was to practice saying our Brachot and Amens. Donuts and candy and the like definitely gave Brachot saying an exciting kick. The ten plagues that Hashem sent the evil Egyptians, which are discussed in this week’s and next week’s Parshah really came alive with the frog cupcakes and animal crackers that we munched on as we learnt about them. We learn a lesson on appreciation from Mosheh, who did not hit the Nile river in order to bring about the plagues. It was that river that saved him from death as a baby, when King Pharaoh had decreed that all baby boys must be drowned in the Nile. He let his brother Ahron do the job. If having appreciation to a river is a thing, how much more so to a live person with feelings. Special shout out to Elior Factor who found the Nile river on a map of Egypt in his secular studies history book! A moral concept that we’ve been reviewing is the concept of respecting everyone at all times regardless of whether or not we necessarily agree with their actions. Also,we had a guest speaker, Noga Sayag, one of our own beloved seventh grade students, come to speak to us on the topic of loving ourselves for who we are, as all that we are is Hashem’s brilliant will. Thank you, dear parents, thank you for sharing your precious treasures with me! Shabbat Shalom!
5th and 6th Girls
Mazel tov to us all for finishing Perez Aleph, the 1st perek (chapter) in Sefer (the book of) Shemot.
We are all really excitedly awaiting our Siyum on Monday!
We learned this week about the amazing everlasting reward of Shifra and Puah, the Jewish midwives, for fearing only Hashem and ignoring Pharaoh’s command to kill all the Jewish baby boys.
We also learned about Pharaoh’s decree to throw all baby boys into the Nile River because his stargazers told him that the Jewish savior was being born.
We had a great time at our Chumash review game. Congratulations Madi, Gabi Fishman, Eva and Mia on your team’s win! They won a +2 on their Chumash test.
We learned about the blessing/beracha of shehakol which we make on all food that doesn’t grow on the ground (meat, candy, drinks etc.)
We learned about how every single one of us was created perfectly, exactly the best way for us and our growth. There were no mistakes! We’ve got to appreciate that Hashem made us the way we are, which is perfect!
We learned about the Parsha, Parshat Vaeira, which talks about 7 of the 10 plagues which G-d inflicted on the Egyptians. (Blood, frogs, lice, wild animals, sickness to their animals which killed them, boils and hail)
Have a great weekend.
7th and 8th Girls
How lucky were we that Rosh Chodesh, our Siyum and ofcourse Friday all fell out in the same week! Thank You , Thank you Ariella Shindelman and Rachel Dym for pulling off the most fun and informative Rosh Chodesh Shevat program. About the siyum, every teacher should have the joy of riding with her students in her car! We had an awesome time chilling at the Dairy Palace. Yes, yes most of them got ice cream even though due to covid 19 we had to sit outside mid- January. The girls earned this trip by putting their all into preparing for the Chumash test which they had taken the day before and did beautifully on. We are now continuing our Chumash journey in Parshat Shemot, we are up to the magnificent scene of Hashem appearing to Moshe for the first time in a burning thorn bush. Rashi explains that Hashem chose a thorn bush in particular because he felt the pain of His nation who we’re being enslaved and tortured, it was a sign of sympathy. We earned some candy bricks during our review of the translation of Al Hamichya, the after Brachah for food made of grain. We are “building” translation of prayer knowledge, one phrase at a time. Ofcourse, the week totally can’t be without the Shabbat party at the end. Thank you Hashem for another great week and thank you parents for sharing your diamonds with me. Shabbat Shalom!
7th and 8th Boys
7th and 8th grade wonderful boys accomplishments
This week we started off with Parsha at the beginning of the week in order to really be able to have time to learn and review before Shabbat.
We had a fun time learning Gmara with Chavrusas [literally “friends”, referring to study partners]. Boys were challenged to think, remember and share information with their partner.
The boys accepted the challenge and enjoyed the feeling of success. We look forward to more of this type of learning in the coming weeks.
We are davening in SIHA’s shul and boys are getting better at being the Chazan. This is in addition to our daily Minyan for Mincha, prior to lunch.
We celebrated Rosh Chodesh with a party which was also a practice in reciting the correct Brachos. We all enjoyed it.
Thank you to our “program manager, miss Dershowitz and Miss Weitzner
Congratulations to Josh Dinar for winning our daily Mincha raffle for two days in a row!
This week kindergarten took their first spelling, decoding, and comprehension test! They did amazing! They read a story about a Pig in a Wig and they sorted pictures to help them retell the story in sequential order. Then, they wrote all about what happened to the pig in a wig using the time order words first, next, and last. In math they learned how to find the missing parts of a number bond. They practiced adding by playing games such as shake, spill, add, a board game where they had to add 2 dice, dominoes, and games with pennies. They are so good at memorizing math facts that they learned two math facts higher than 10! In science they sorted the 3 states of matter. In social studies they learned about diversity and how our differences are important because they are what makes everyone special. They also began learning about Martin Luther King Jr. Kindergarten was so excited to play on the new playground and they had so much fun!
This week our fabulous first graders have been engaged in many pursuits. They have completed the Reading Unit about characters and setting. Students wrote letters about a special day. However, the highlight of the week was studying measurements in Mathematics. The first graders really enjoyed measuring length and width of objects around the room using non-standard units. We used paper clips, hands, and even string. It was a fun time exploring.
This week, in math, the second graders finished their mini-unit on word problems. In ELA, the students worked on identifying problems and solutions in stories and using text evidence to predict what will happen next. In social studies, the students reviewed culture, different types of holidays, and reading a timeline. We also had some students present their wonderful “My Culture” projects. On Thursday, the students had a blast at the grand opening party for the new playground!
In science, students finished chapter 5 “Weather and other earth changes”.
Students learned about Erosion, Volcanoes and Earthquakes that shape the Earth’s surface.
Amazing projects about Erosion were drawn during the art class.
This week grade 3 students completed their geography unit with the Great Lakes. Next week, we will begin discussing communities and the different kinds of resources we have access to. This will blend in nicely, since this week we have also begun collecting water bottles in class to help with the recycling program the upperclassmen have kicked off at SIHA. During math lessons, they practiced estimation, or locating the approximate value of numbers in addition and subtraction equations. During their grammar lessons, students practiced modifying singular nouns into their possessive forms. In computer class, students continued to learn about the different parts of a computer, both portable and desktop. Many were baffled by the parts such as the computer tower that at this day and age few have ever seen at home. In music, students continued to learn about rhythm, melody, and pitch while learning songs like Fill the World With Light by Benny Friedman.
In science, students learned and explored how bird’s beaks are adapted to eating different kinds of food. Described adaptations that protect organisms in different ecosystems.
An art/science project was displayed about animals that camouflage.
This week in math we continued to work on operations on fractions. Focused mainly on word problems, multistep problems with the use of bar models to help us solve complex problems.
In ELA students identified and use adjectives that compare , completed writing activities and each student wrote an acrostic poem about their favorite food.
In Social Studies we completed chapter 6 Living In The South and did great on the test.
In Science, students started a new chapter that explains forces that shape Earth’s surface.
An experiment about Volcanoes was performed during the science lesson.
4B had a very exciting week! On Thursday we had a chance to experience for the very first time SIHA’s brand new playground! We had a great time playing in the new playground, which is equipped with all the staples of a great playground! We had donuts provided by the PTA, and a wonderful fruit salad made by none other than our very own Shalev Danziger’s mom! In less exciting news, we are wrapping up our unit on fractions, and preparing for a test. In ELA we are wrapping up our grammar unit on verbs.
In Science, students finished Chapter 7 “Adaptation and Extinction”.
Students inferred the effect of change in an environment, describing how organisms, including humans, affect their environments. Explored factors that threaten the survival of species.
This week has been a busy week!
The 5th grade learned about contractions in grammar. They practiced identifying and writing contractions to better be able to use them.
In writing the class learned about comparing chronological text structure and problem-solution text structure and how the two structures help the author’s purpose in a passage.
They are also finishing their class novel! They will be writing an essay on Theme- I can’t wait to read what the class has to write!
The class has also begun their new Independent Reading Book. I’m looking forward to their end next IR project!
In math, the class started learning about perimeter and area. The class is also practicing using graph paper when drawing shapes in order to find their area. It was a challenge at first but I am happy to say that the 5th grade is making good progress!
In social studies the class took their end of unit test on South America. I think everyone did very well! They will be finishing the unit with a map project ver the Western Hemisphere. I am excited for the new unit!
Lastly, the entire 5th grade was very happy with the new playground! They enjoyed themselves thoroughly yesterday and were able to go back for a second round of play during recess. I’m sure they will get to enjoy the new playground to their heart’s content in the future.
This week I would like to commend Josh, Alec, and Sofia for making great progress with their IR projects!
In Science, Students learned about major Biomes. Described adaptations that allow organisms to survive in salt and freshwater environments, the importance of estuaries to both land and sea.
Middle School ELA
6th Grade had an amazing week! In Grammar, we reviewed for our upcoming grammar test. We went over parts of a sentence, and reviewed subject, predicate, and direct object. Students played a grammar review game, and everyone did amazing! In reading, we continued our novel study of Hatchet. In writing, we wrote a long response about author’s perspective.
7th grade had a busy week! We started our grammar review for our upcoming grammar test. In reading, we continued our novel study of Milkweed. We also reviewed steps to poetry analysis by discussing structure, language, mood and meaning of lyric poems. Students also wrote wonderful paragraphs about the poems they read.
8th grade had a good week! We wrapped up our vocabulary unit with a study of common word parts. In reading, we finished off The Giver and started writing our essay. Students are writing an argumentative essay about whether or not the setting of our novel is a dystopia or a utopia.
Middle School Math
6th grade reviewed how to graph points on a line using charts solved with rates. Pictured below is Eva plotting a point on the graph. Sixth grade also started learning about converting between decimals, fractions, and percents.
7th grade reviewed perimeter and learned how to apply algebra to solve the missing side.
7th honors started their unit on statistics. They learned about populations, samples, random sampling, biased questions, and how to determine if a sample is representative of the population.
8th grade started their unit on graphing linear equations. They learned how to make a table and graph the equation.
8th honors started their unit on graphing linear equations. They learned about x and y intercepts and how to determine the values from a graph and algebraically.
In 8th grade Math B, we learned about types of angles and how to find their angles. We studied complementary, supplementary, and adjacent angles before completing a “Build a Town” project where the students had to create angles made of roads and place town items (school, shul, houses, etc) in specific angles. They did great and worked together so nicely!
Middle School Science
Students learned about Earth’s water. Composition and characteristics of oceans and how energy is transferred through waves.
7th Grade – The 7th Graders are doing fantastic in Science class. This group of students is composed of fantastic leaders, listeners and students with a spectacular work ethic. They work excellent collaboratively and always look out for each other. I am very proud of them, KEEP IT UP 7th GRADE! Now, let me please give props to Yisroel Friedman, Yisorel has been doing fabulous and his progress academically and socially has been unprecedented. Yisroel has earned the title “My Guy” from me in Homeroom and in Science. He is always willing to help out and has earned the job of being my assistant, he is reliable, follows directions and does a spectacular job at getting the job done. WAY TO GO YISROEL!!! Shout Out to Ariella, as she has been diligently working at arriving to school in a timely manner and has been successful. Great Job, keep it up!!! Also, I want to say a special thank you Sarit for all of your hard work, I couldn’t do it without you. Please enjoy the work of our 7th Grade Scholars. Students have been learning about plant and animal cells in addition, they are learning about the functions of the cell and their microscopic organelles. As they dove right into their 3D cell project, students worked together to learn and build their cells.
6th grade covered ancient Indian society, including the caste system and important festivals.
7th grade started Unit 3 by learning about the international impacts of the American Revolution and also took the Unit 2 exam.
8th grade discussed the decade of the 1890s, including the Spanish-American War and began the leadup to the Great War.