December 22, 2016
Kislev 22, 5777
Good Things Happen Every Day 
at  The Silver Academy
Rachel Zilbering, Principal

Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of hosting our annual Celebration of Light and Learning.  While our celebration occurred before Chanukah due to the school calendar, it was still very much a celebration of the light that our students bring to the school every day. Students presented songs, dances and plays which are captured in some of the pictures below and at the end of this newsletter.

As we head into 2017, I reflect on the growth our students and faculty have made during the last calendar year.  We work together as a team and it shows. 

See everyone next year. 
Shabbat shalom

Inside the Classroom

1st and 2nd Grades Judaics
Mrs. Alla Fligelman (Morah Alla)

1st and 2nd grades have been busy preparing for their Chanukah celebration. They presented a short theater version of the Chanukah story to our parents and other guests. Here are some scenes from the show...
The Jews are preparing to protect themselves. 
Judah Macabee is the fearless leader!

The Battle of Jews Against Greeks. 
In our class, both sides have fun!
Lighting the Menorah in the Temple
Preparing dessert for our guests

Of course, singing and dancing is an important
 part of our Chanukah party!

Middle School Language Arts
Mrs. Sandy Nussbaum

The Silver Academy Middle School is rapidly becoming a COMMUNITY of strong WRITERS!  We have been spending our Writing Workshop sessions exploring personal narratives and creating powerful life stories. This new program emphasizes  independent writing in conjunction with collaborative peer sessions. Our writers are learning to identify ideas worth writing about, to use details that convey the meaning the writer intends, and to craft leads which draw the readers to the hearts of their stories.

Our Middle School is very creative!! We have shared stories about grandparents and their role in teaching one student how to ride a bike, one  student's love of roller coasters, the trauma of getting blood work, getting braces,  amazing sports experiences, what it feels like to get your first C, being in the hospital, a first airplane trip and what it feels like to eat salad for the first time. Other students shared their gaming experiences, camel riding adventure in Israel and what it feels like to find oneself in Middle School in Harrisburg and how it compares to school in Israel. We  were even able to join one student on a school trip to a river in the northern part of Israel!

We are looking forward to furthering our writing skills and to sharing our work with our Writing Community......

D'var Torah  Parshat Vayishlach
by Joshua Jackson, 6th grade

Sometimes we wonder why people who have tough lives still believe in G-d. Joseph, in this week's parsha "VaYeshev", is an example who can help explain how such people are able to feel this way.

Joseph's brothers sold him to a caravan of Ishmaelites who brought him to Egypt and sold him to an Egyptian officer named Potiphar. Then the torah says:  

וַיַּרְא אֲדֹנָיו כִּי ה' אִתּוֹ וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר הוּא עֹשֶׂה ה' מַצְלִיחַ בְּיָדוֹ
And his master saw that the Lord was with him, and whatever he (Joseph) did the Lord made prosper in his hand.

Potiphar saw that G-d was helping Joseph be successful in everything he was doing.

Rashi is puzzled  by the seemingly unnecessary repetition in the pasuk. It says that Potiphar " saw that the Lord was with" Joseph, and that " whatever he did the Lord made prosper".

Rashi answers that the first phrase means:
" the name of Heaven was frequently in his mouth" . [From Tanchuma Vayeshev 8]

Rashi is explaining that the first phrase means whenever Joseph was successful, he thanked G-d for His help.  The second phrase conveys that Joseph's comments enabled Pharaoh to realize that  Joseph was successful because of G-d.

We may wonder why Joseph was so thankful to G-d when he had such a difficult life. Joseph suffered so much from the jealousy of his brothers.  They tried to kill him by abandoning him in a pit. Though his brothers soon relented, they separated him from his beloved father by selling him to an Ishmaelite caravan which brought him to Egypt where he became a slave.

Apparently, Joseph knew that whatever G-d did was for his benefit. Even his difficult experiences would not have been caused or allowed by G-d to happen had they not been for the best.

Joseph had recently experienced an incident that probably strengthened his understanding that G-d was always directing his life. Two chapters earlier, the Torah says:

וַיֵּשְׁבוּ לֶאֱכָל לֶחֶם וַיִּשְׂאוּ עֵינֵיהֶם וַיִּרְאוּ וְהִנֵּה אֹרְחַת יִשְׁמְעֵאלִים בָּאָה מִגִּלְעָד וּגְמַלֵּיהֶם נֹשְׂאִים נְכֹאת וּצְרִי וָלֹט הוֹלְכִים לְהוֹרִיד מִצְרָיְמָה:

"And they sat down to eat a meal, and they lifted their eyes and saw, and behold, a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, and their camels were carrying spices, balm, and lotus, going to take [it] down to Egypt."

After throwing Joseph into a pit, his brothers saw a caravan on the way to Egypt.  They decided to sell him to the caravan merchants, who would bring Joseph to Egypt.

Rashi wonders why the Torah records the products that the caravan was transporting.  This seems to be irrelevant.

Rashi answers by quoting a Midrash
that caravans on this route usually transported foul smelling tar. When Joseph would notice the unusually pleasant smelling baggag e, he would know that G-d was telling him that He was there with him. Then he'd be able to feel that even the unpleasant experiences were part of G-d's plan, and that G-d was always with him.

When we go through difficult experiences and think that G-d is not with us, we have to keep our eyes out for the  "good smelling caravans" in our lives.  G-d is always with us, but we often don't notice  the  "simple stuff" that G-d arranges for us. That is why it is hard for us to believe He is always with us when life is hard. It becomes easier when we notice the clearly good things that G-d does for us.  Let's keep our eyes open for our own "sweet smelling caravans"!

Catching up with Classmates
to Jackie and Scott Rubin on the birth of their daughter, Samantha Mae, who was born December 18 at Harrisburg Hospital! Her brothers, Noah and Daniel are excited to have a new baby in the family, as are grandparents, Myrna and Bert Rubin (Harrisburg), and Adrianne and Elliot Sternthal (Newton, MA). Scott is a 1998 graduate of The Silver Academy.

Do you love hearing what's going on with friends and classmates from your past years here at The Silver Academy?
If you are interested in sharing "your story", recent engagement, wedding, baby, graduation, new jobs, or other news, please email Shari Dym at

School Notes and Reminders

Celebrate Chanukah at the Capitol!

 Tuesday, December 27, 4:30 pm
At the State Capitol East Wing Rotunda 
    • Fun for the whole family!
    • Hot latkes and sufganiyot
    • Musical Entertainment
    • Fun activities for kids
    • All children will be entered into a raffle for an Android 10" Tablet
For more information about the event, please contact 
  Chabad Lubavitch at 717-233-1526

For more information about Chanukah,  please visit

Monday, January 16th   -   8:45 am-12:30 pm
  • Please join The Silver Academy on Martin Luther King, Jr., Day for a morning of fun, mitzvot, and community service.
  • We will also host our third annual hair-donating ceremony for Pantene Pro V Beautiful Lengths. Please consider donating your hair if you have 8 inches to spare!
  • To RSVP or if you are interested in donating hair, please contact Adam Grobman at or 717-238-8775.

Click Here for More Information 

Click Here for Friend Permission Slip




Challah With a Twist 
Offers Weekly Order and Delivery To Students and Teachers
  • Order your challah by Thursday at this website: It will be delivered to school on Friday.
  • Send check to school, payable to Challah with a Twist , or use  .
"Challah With a Twist", (a.k.a. Varda Challah), has been providing home baked challah for the Harrisburg community for over 20 years.
Varda Gewirtz, 717-919-1358

 Silver Snapshot

Celebration of Light and Learning 
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Dec 23, 11:40
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