ECC Weekly Newsletter 
June 16, 2017 - Sivan 22 5777
Parashat Shalch
ECC Highlights
Robin's Message
Dvar Torah
Thoughts of the Rav
2-Year-Old Class Newsletter
3-Year-Old Class Newsletter
4-Year-Old Class Newsletter
Yom Chesed
ES, MS, and US Newsletters

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From Robin Meyerowitz
Dear Parents,

This year has flown by so quickly! We love being with your children, watching them grow, learn, and develop. It is such a privilege to be the director of the Maimonides Early Childhood Center. It is a real honor to be with your children and with you during this unique time in their life. Many people call these years the magic years, and there is a special reason for that! They are truly magical.

I am sure you join me in thanking our wonderful teachers for guiding and loving your beautiful children. We will miss them so much over the summer.

Keep in touch and Shabbat Shalom!


Dvar Torah
by Rabbi David Saltzman     

In this week's parsha Moshe sends twelve representatives, one from each tribe, to Israel to scout out the land. Moshe gave the scouts a few assignments to accomplish on their mission. They were commanded to see whether the land was good and whether the people were strong, and to bring back some fruits. Oddly, they were also assigned to see whether there were any trees, as the pasuk states:
וּמָה הָאָרֶץ הַשְּׁמֵנָה הִוא אִם רָזָה הֲיֵשׁ בָּהּ עֵץ אִם אַיִן וְהִתְחַזַּקְתֶּם וּלְקַחְתֶּם מִפְּרִי הָאָרֶץ וְהַיָּמִים יְמֵי בִּכּוּרֵי עֲנָבִים:
"What is the soil like, is it fat or lean? Are there any trees in it or not? You shall be courageous and take from the fruit of the land." It was the season when the first grapes begin to ripen.
Many commentators understand this request as Moshe's method of encouraging the spies to notice the beauty of the land. Moshe was instructing them to pay particular attention to how wonderful the land is, as it is especially blessed with special fruits. As the Seforno writes, they were to look to see:
הֲיֶשׁ בָּהּ עֵץ - "גֶּפֶן וּתְאֵנָה וְרִמּוֹן... זֵית שֶׁמֶן וּדְבָשׁ" (שם), שֶׁנִּשְׁתַּבְּחָה בָּהֶם.
היש בה עץ , are there fruit trees, such as grape vines, fig trees, pomegranate trees and olive trees for which the land is praised.
Rashi takes a different path and explains that the tree they were searching for was actually a metaphor for a deterrent from wanting to conquer the land. As Rashi says:
היש בה עץ - אם יש בהן אדם כשר, שיגן עליהם בזכותו.
does it have trees: Heb. הִיֵשׁ בָּהּ עֵץ , lit,. does it have a tree. Does it have a worthy man who will protect them with his merit. - [B.B. 15a]
There are a number of questions to ask regarding this Rashi - for instance, Why does Rashi divert from the pshat? How were they to find this person? - but one important question is: How can a single person have enough merit to protect the entire country? And does that idea even work - can the merit of one person guard an entire population from destruction?
The students at Maimonides know that the answer is a resounding yes. We have been learning about arvut the entire year and are very familiar with the concept that one person has the ability to take responsibility for, and affect the destiny of, others. This responsibility can manifest itself both on an individual level and on a national level. We learned about Yehuda taking responsibility for bringing Binyamin back from Egypt. We discussed Yosef, who took responsibility for physically saving all of the Jewish people in Egypt by providing food. We also learned that there is a metaphysical element to arvut. One person's tefillot can be transferred to help thousands of people. Finally, at the beginning of the year we learned a halacha from the Rambam, who stated in Hilchot Teshuva:
לפיכך צריך כל אדם שיראה עצמו כל השנה כולה כאילו חציו זכאי וחציו חייב וכן כל העולם חציו זכאי וחציו חייב . . . עשה מצוה אחת הרי הכריע את עצמו ואת כל העולם כולו לכף זכות וגרם לו ולהם תשועה והצלה שנאמר וצדיק יסוד עולם זה שצדק הכריע את כל העולם לזכות והצילו
Accordingly, throughout the entire year, a person should always look at himself as equally balanced between merit and sin and the world as equally balanced between merit and sin... If he performs one mitzvah, he tips his balance and that of the entire world to the side of merit and brings deliverance and salvation to himself and others. This is implied by [Proverbs 10:25]. "A righteous man is the foundation of the world" i.e., he who acted righteously tipped the balance of the entire world to merit and saved it.
Based on this arvut example by the Rambam, perhaps the same principle applies to the tree-man living in the land of Israel. The spies were commanded to determine whether there was an individual living in the land who could tip the scales in favor of the Canaanites. The spies knew that even one person, through their positive actions, has the ability to protect a neighborhood, a city, a country, and even the world by tipping the scales favorably and causing the multitude to gain merit through their deeds.
This is one of the many lessons we learned about arvut this past year. It was a fruitful year learning about arvut and how we are all responsible for, intertwined with, and connected to each other.
Thoughts of the Rav    
by Rabbi Dov Huff

This week's parsha tells us of the mitzvah of tzitzit, comprising the colors lavan and techeilet. One position in the Mishna is that these two colors are interdependent in the tzitzit, meaning that the tzitzit are not kosher without either one.
The Rav says that the two colors represent two different ideas. White is clarity. It represents that which is plainly true. We know it when we see it.
Techeilet, on the other hand, is the subject of controversy. It is not clear what color techeilet is. What we know from Chazal is that it resembles the sea, which resembles the sky, which resembles the celestial throne. Techeilet is out of our grasp. It is distant and inaccessible. It makes us think of the infinite, in the same way as does looking at the sea and the stars. 
The Rav explains that both these perspectives are important. We need to be grounded and immersed in that which is in front of us and apparent, but to also never lose sight of the bigger cosmic and divine realities which connect us to the Kisei Hakavod.
2-Year-Old Class Newsletter
Dearest Parents,
This is the last newsletter of the year, and we've really come such a long way since September.
This Wednesday, the last of the school year, after the very fun End-of-the-Year Bash complete with everything bouncy, the Morahs gave a puppet show about a doggie and a horse who were two very young two-year-olds. We actually pretended it was the beginning of the year.
The puppets disagreed about almost everything, from taking turns with the toy school bus, to which chair they wanted to sit in. They also cried and missed their Abbas and Imas. They weren't used to spending that much time with so many others!
Then we pretended that the puppets were three-year-olds, and it was the end of the year in June. Wow, what a difference it made! The puppets knew how to play together so kindly and how to take turns (most of the time). They said "please" and "thank you," and hardly missed their parents very much. After that, it was the students' turn and, two by two, they got to do their own puppet shows.
We've really grown so much this year. With lots of ❤️ love, kindness, patience, and perseverance, your children have developed and grown so much, from learning how to hang up their own coats, to putting their lunches away when they are through eating. As their Morahs, we are so very proud when we watch them work out their dilemmas. They understand that they can feel safe asking us for help if they need it, and in between, working out their disagreements on their own. We observe them, over and over again, treating each other with such love and compassion.
Along with you, their parents, we hope we've given them a strong base of Jewish education, as well as the tools and skills they'll need to flourish and blossom in all their new adventures to come.  
Thank you for all your support during this very special year. We will miss all of you very much.
Love and Shabbat Shalom,
Your Morot Laura and Tzipi
Robin joined us for a lovely tea party.
We cooked twice this past week. Here Morah Tzipi is making homemade burekas with us. We even cooked and mashed potatoes for the filling.

Monday was fun day outside in the water on our playground. Thanks to Morah Irit and Morah Tzipi, who set up lots of fun areas, including an alligator that spouted water, and a slide that zoomed into a pool. 
Here is the pool! Very very cool and very fun!
Making Curious George monkey bread for Friday's little slideshow. Those happy looks are because Morah Tzipi left the room to get the butter and then peeked into the window.
Cinnamon, butter, and dough--what more do you need?
Here are some very serious artists at work. 
Puppets are an excellent way to teach and learn, and they are really fun to play with. 
The students were very thoughtful before their performance.
This show had something to do with the Earth, a bus, and a blue ticket.
It was a hot day, and a sweet moment!

We were thankful we spent our year with Morah Hadassah as our yoga teacher.  Here is our new yoga teacher, Morah Nechamah, meeting us on Wednesday afternoon. 
3-Year-Old Class Newsletter 
Dear Parents,
It's so hard to believe that the school year is over. It has been such a pleasure watching how much your children have grown since September. We have loved watching how the class became a cohesive unit and how the students learned our classroom routines. The students have learned the tefillot during davening, brachot during snack and lunch, and looked forward to learning about the parsha each week. We have also seen how the students loved to help each other. Some examples we saw were when they helped a friend wipe up a spill, helped a friend look for something that was lost, shared a toy with a friend who wanted to play with it, or gave a friend a hug when she or he was sad.
This week's activities were all about getting excited for summer. It certainly felt like summer earlier this week. On Monday, the ECC went out to the playground for water fun. The students slid down the slide and splashed into a kiddie pool, jumped through a crocodile sprinkler, dipped their feet (and bodies) in containers filled with water, and squirted each other (and teachers) with squirt bottles. We then enjoyed an ice cream snack with the other classes. It was such a fun day!
On Tuesday for Cooking, the students measured, poured, and mixed ingredients to make cupcake cones. The batter was poured into ice cream cones and baked. When they cooled, each student frosted their cone, added sprinkles, and ate it for snack.

Wednesday morning, the ECC went over to the Saval campus for the End-of-the-Year Bash. There were five bouncy activities set up for the children to use. They loved jumping up and down, throwing balls at a velcro bulls-eye, racing through an obstacle course, and going down the slides. The children went to each station with such excitement! When they were all done, we went to the front of the Saval building and enjoyed a popsicle treat. It was a delicious way to cool off.
It was so nice seeing so many of you today at our End-of-the-Year program. We hope you enjoyed the slideshow highlighting how much your children have developed this year. Thank you so much for sharing your children with us. We loved spending time with them and helping them grow this year. We will miss them!

We want to wish all the dads a very happy Father's Day. The students were excited to make their gifts for you. We hope you enjoy it.

We also want to wish everyone a happy and restful summer. We look forward to seeing you in September!
Shabbat Shalom,
Morot Leisa, Shayna, Tanya, and Marggie
                                                                                                        Dov, Leo, and Ezra were busy cooking outside on the playground.
The kids got together and held hands outside as they played.
Yosef and Charlie drove around together.

We enjoyed our yummy popsicles after our End-of-Year Bash at Saval.

Jonah and Ezra got ready to jump their way through a blow-up obstacle course at the End-of-Year Bash.

Simcha loved going down the big blow-up slide.

Amelie prepared herself for the big slide down at the end of the obstacle course. She did it!!

Charlie had fun getting messy to make his Father's Day present.

Yuval, Dov, Jonah, and Leah had a great time dipping their hands into cups of water to help them work with their clay during art class.

Ari had fun getting silly on Water Day.
Jonah and Yosef had so much fun playing in the alligator sprinkler.
Ezra loved sliding down into the kiddie pool!
Leo and Liam filled up their water squirters and dug in the water they mixed up.
Ayelet and Sheva enjoyed some relaxation in their little pool.

Liat and Amelie giggled together as they got all wet on Monday.
Avital, Gavriella, Simcha,  Hillel, and Josh loved using funnels in the water table.
4-Year-Old Class Newsletter

Dear Parents,
Can you believe that this is the final newsletter of the year? We had such a great week with many fun activities and treats.

We started the week with our water fun day. We kept cool on Monday, wading in a blow-up pool, jumping through sprinklers, and spraying each other with water bottles. Afterwards, we got ice cream. What a yummy treat!
On Wednesday, we went to the Saval building for the PTA's End-of-the-Year Bash. We had a great time jumping and racing in bouncy houses. There was also a huge target that we threw big tennis balls at to see where they would stick. After that, we got a second special treat: popsicles!
Throughout the week, we have spent time making a special gift for Father's Day. We also practiced for our performance at the Last Day of School party. We were really excited to show you what we have learned! We hope you enjoyed the show.
We cannot believe how much your children have grown. It has been a pleasure guiding and teaching them, and learning from them as well. We will treasure our experiences from this year, and look forward to hearing great things about them as they continue to their next year in school.
Shabbat Shalom and have a wonderful summer!
Morot Irit, Mimi, and Sara

Lior, Nessim, Jacob, Yehuda Rose, and Naftali looking to see what happens when we add one more ball.
Naftali, Yonathan, and Adir made pictures and patterns out of magnetic shapes.

Yehuda Slater, Jacob, Harel, and Ezra Levin squirted each other with spray bottles.

Aviya was also spraying her friends, while Ezra Aghion played with a beach ball that the Morah brought out.
Shira and Shalhevet built a beautiful house using blocks and Magnatiles.

Naava, Aviya, Avigayil, Noemie, Yonathan, and Adir mixed colors on coffee filters.


Dalia, Naava, Yehuda Slater, Esther, Naomi, and Ezra Levin had a lot of fun on the bouncy houses at the End-of-the-Year Bash.

Jonathan raced though the bouncy house to get to the top of the slide.
While Adir put the balls on the target, Esther got them down.
We ate popsicles as a special treat in front of the school at Saval campus.

We got to practice for the last day of school in the gym.
Get Involved in Yom Chesed
Would you like to be involved with Yom Chesed, our day of community service?

Our fourth Yom Chesed is scheduled for Sunday morning, November 5, 2017. Yom Chesed is an all-ages community service initiative for our entire Maimonides community.  Our past Yom Chesed events have each involved over 500 participants helping a broad range of community organizations in hands-on projects.

While November seems a long way off, planning for this event begins now! If you are interested in helping to coordinate one of our Yom Chesed projects, or would like to find out more information about volunteer opportunities, please contact one of our Yom Chesed coordinators, Stef Mishkin,, or Alissa Muzin,
See what's happening in other divisions
Lots of wonderful things are happening at Maimonides School!

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