April 13, 2018 - 28 Nisan 5778 - Shmini
ES Highlights
D'var Torah
Thoughts of the Rav
Pinat HaParasha
Days of Commemoration
PTA Lunch
Financial Aid
Yom HaShoah
Yom Orchim
Hakarat Hatov
Ayeka Workshop
Science Camp
Alumni Newsletter
Screen Time
Social Time!
ECC/MS/US Newsletters
ES Calendar
Tuesday, April 17
3:00 p.m. Dismissal
Sunday, April 22
Family Learning

Tuesday, May 1
3:00 p.m. Dismissal

Friday, May 4
Yom Orchim
As always, please see the Kol Rambam Weekly for the all-school calendar, events and PTA notes.
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Dear Parents,

We had a great week at school!
Please read on for the latest Elementary School news and information about upcoming events. 
D'var Torah
by Rabbi David Saltzman
In this week's parsha it is Rosh Chodesh Nissan, the first day the Mishkan was operational. It was the day of the Chanukat HaMishkan, the inauguration of the tabernacle. A special korban for Rosh Chodesh was brought, and because Aharon's sons died earlier, Moshe and Aharon had a difference of opinion as to whether the korban should be eaten by the kohanim or completely burned.
After some discussion and expression of opinion, the pasuk says that:
וַיִּשְׁמַע מֹשֶׁה וַיִּיטַב בְּעֵינָיו                                                      
And when Moses heard this (the opinion of Aharon and his sons), he approved.
What does it mean "and Moshe heard"? Since Moshe was talking to Aharon, of course he heard him! Perhaps it means that Moshe listened closely. Since he made an effort to listen well, he then understood. The Torah is teaching us that in order to understand another person's opinion, you need to be open to listening to it and not just "hear" the words.
The pasuk continues and adds "that it was good in his eyes." What was good in Moshe's eyes?
Seforno comments:
וייטב בעיניו שמח על טוב סברת אחיו ובניו שהיטיבו לראות ולהורות:
Moshe enjoyed the reasoning Aaron presented explaining why he had acted as he did and Moshe accepted Aharon's interpretation of the law. Moshe was happy that they were correct in their interpretation.
According to Seforno, Moshe had hakarat hatov because he was able to recognize the good and correctness of Aharon's argument and understand it. When he did, he was happy for them (and himself) that they knew the law. Moshe was happy even though he needed to change his own opinion. Also, Moshe was on a higher level than Aaron and his sons, and still he humbly accepted their proper position.
We can learn from this episode that whenever we are involved in a discussion it is important to show hakarat hatov, which in this case means to recognize the good of others' viewpoints and to respectfully listen to their ideas.
Click here to save or print the D'var Torah
Thoughts of the Rav
by Mrs. Stephanie Samuels
In this week's parsha, we read the story of the untimely and tragic death of Aharon's two oldest sons, Nadav and Avihu. According to the text, there is really only one difference between their actions and the action of their father. While they both brought the same ketoret, incense, Aharon's sacrifice was according to G-d's will, while his sons' offering had not been commanded by G-d.
The sin of Nadav and Avihu highlights a dichotomy in our approach to religious observance. On the one hand, our religiosity is very serious and disciplined. At the same time, however, all mitzvot should be experienced through joy. How can we resolve this dichotomy?
The Rav explains that the Jewish approach to religious observance is to live a disciplined life according to G-d's commandments. For example, we pray in accordance with set times, location, and behavior. Prayer is obligatory, an act where we surrender to G-d's will. The hope is that eventually, we can transform that ritual experience into a profound spiritual experience.
In contrast to this, the pagan approach to religious life begins with excitement and fervor and culminates in sin and disillusionment. This is comparable to the experience of using drugs or alcohol to create an artificial feeling of happiness, which masks underlying sadness or disappointment.
According to the Rav, the sin of Nadav and Avihu was that they were overcome by ecstasy, and totally missed the point - that a Jewish life worth living, a joyous life, is one that is imbued with a sense of mitzvah, of obeying G-d's commandments.
Pinat HaParasha
Please click here  to view the  Pinat  HaParasha for Parshat Shmini . You are encouraged to print the document and use it as a source for discussion at the Shabbat table.
Student Dress for Days of Commemoration
In honor of next week's events, we are asking the students to dress suitably for each of the days of commemoration:
  • Monday, April 16, will be Rosh Chodesh Iyar.  If possible, please have your child wear a white shirt in honor of the day.
  • Tuesday, April 17, pizza will be served.  No white shirt is needed.
  • Wednesday, April 18, will be Yom HaZikaron, Memorial Day. All students should wear white shirts.
  • Thursday, April 19, will be Yom HaAtzmaut, Israeli Independence Day. All students should wear white shirts. Boys should wear blue pants, and girls should wear blue skirts.
Thank you for your cooperation.

PTA Lunch for All Students on Yom HaAtzmaut
In celebration of Yom HaAtzmaut, the PTA will be providing an Israeli-style lunch to all students on Thursday, April 19.  Parent volunteers will be in each lunchroom to help with distribution. 
Teacher Appreciation Week begins Monday, April 23 and the PTA is excited to recognize our dedicated teachers!  More information will be sent out next week.

Reminder: Financial Aid for 2018-19
If you have filed a financial aid application for the upcoming school year, the deadline for submitting the required 2017 tax documentation is Thursday, April 19.
Please contact Arline Tannenbaum at ext. 425 or atannenbaum@maimonides.org with any questions.
Yom HaShoah
On Thursday we were honored with a visit by Mrs. Ruth Mermelstein, great-grandmother of 3rd grader Eitan Orkaby.  She spoke with the 3rd-5th graders about her life in Munkascz before the war. Mrs. Mermelstein also mentioned what gave her hope to survive during those horrible times. You can read her story in her book  Beyond The Tracks

Prior to her speech, a group of students and the shlichot presented the inspiring story of Janusz Korczak, a Polish doctor and author who was director of an orphanage in the Warsaw Ghetto and chose to stay with the children when they were taken to Treblinka.  Through skits and videos we gained a deeper understanding of his sacrifice and commitment to his students.
We concluded with a dance of hope performed by a group of students and then sang Hatikva together.  

Yom Orchim is May 4!
We Need Contact Information for Your Child's Special Guests

We are gearing up for another wonderful Yom Orchim!  All Early Childhood Center and Elementary School students are encouraged to invite grandparents or another special guest to spend the morning of Friday, May 4th at Maimonides.  There will be singing, eating, and lots of fun!  But we need the contact information to invite your child's guests. 

Hakarat Hatov Project
The week before Pesach vacation, the entire Elementary School demonstrated hakarat hatov to a number of staff members who are indispensable to the smooth running of the school. Each class prepared a box with hakarat hatov notes and gifts of food to show how much they appreciate the staff's day-to-day efforts on behalf of the students and the school.

The students in each grade presented gifts to the following staff members: 
  • K - LaShanta (front office)
  • 1st grade - Fadouma (maintenance)
  • 2nd grade - Benny (maintenance)
  • 3rd grade - Berto (maintenance)
  • 4th grade - lunch servers
  • 5th Grade - Osseh (security guard)
Ayeka:  A Special Interactive Workshop on Spirituality and Connection
Join us on Monday, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. in Saval Auditorium for a special program featuring Rabbi Aryeh Ben David, Founder and Director of Ayeka: The Center for Soulful Education. Rabbi Ben David will be sharing his vision of Jewish education that promotes a personal and vibrant relationship with Jewish text, Judaism, G-d, and spirituality.  He will also discuss how we can focus on soulful parenting in today's busy and complicated world.  RSVP to msnyder@maimonides.org

Science Camp
Registration is now open for science camp!
Camp will run for two weeks again this year:
Week 1: June 25-29 -- STEM
Week 2: July 2-6 (no camp July 4) -- Art, Food, and the Environment
Please see http://www.maimonides.org/sciencecamp for more informationThere is a link for registration at the bottom of the web page. 
Contact ksmith@maimonides.org with any questions.

Alumni Newsletter Online
The monthly alumni newsletter for March is now online, and can be found here. This issue's articles include:
  • Graduate's Hospitality Career Thrives in the Hub of Boston's Medical Universe
  • Alumna's New Venture Explores Text, Tradition through Tangible Creating
  • Graduate Finally Finds Income, Spare Time to Pursue Comedy Projects
  • Class Notes 
If you would like to receive the alumni newsletter each month, contact Mike Rosenberg at (617) 232-4452 x 405 or  mrosenberg@maimonides.org.

Screen Time for Students
We know that many parents try to limit screen time for their children and would like better guidelines or alternative means for students to practice their skills.  
We have compiled the chart below with our recommendations and requirements for each grade. If your child does not do well with these programs and you would like alternative ways for them to work on their skills, please let the teachers know and they will be glad to make other suggestions and/or supply other materials.

Reflex Math
KeyboardingWithout Tears
or Typing Club
Ariot Cal or iTalAm
Dah Ber
20 minutes a week; possibly more for specific students.
2x week
15 Minutes
Recommended 15 minutes a week;
possibly more for specific students
Recommended 15 minutes a week
1 x week
15 minutes or more
Recommended 2x week
10-15 minutes;
possibly more for specific students
2x week
10-15 minutes
As assigned by teacher
Recommended for specific students
Required 3x week
15 minutes
between school & home
Required 2x week
15 minutes
 As assigned by teacher
Optional & Occasional
Recommended for specific students
3x week
15 minutes until completed  
Typing Club: Optional up to
3x week 15 minutes
As assigned by Teacher
Recommended for specific students
3-4x week
15-20 minutes until completed
As assigned by Teacher

Social Time!
There's so much going on here at Maimo! Be sure to check out our social media to get the inside scoop (with lots of great photos) on happenings at school.  
Follow us on Twitter and Instagram

See What's Happening in the Other Divisions
Lots of wonderful things are happening at Maimonides School!

If you'd like to take a peek at what's happening in the other divisions, click to visit the Early Childhood Center, Middle School, or Upper School newsletter pages.

If you would like to contact a specific school office, please use these emails:

!שבת שלום
Rabbi, Reena, and the Maimonides ES Faculty