December 15, 2017 - 27 Kislev 5778 - Miketz
ES Highlights
D'var Torah
Thoughts of the Rav
Pinat HaParasha
After-School Make-Up Classes
Chanukah Activities
Cold Weather Reminder
Family Learning
PTA Chanukah Celebration
Mouth Guards Needed
STEM Update
Mazel Tov!
Lost and Found
Town Hall Meeting
Social Time!
ECC/MS/US Newsletters
ES Calendar
Sunday, Dec. 17
Family Learning

Monday, Dec. 25-Monday, Jan. 2
Winter Vacation
No School
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 another 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
Last week we learned that the sar hamashkim (wine bearer) forgot to show hakarat hatov to Yosef. This week, the sar hamashkim has a chance to redeem himself. After hearing Pharaoh's dreams and seeing that none of the trained magicians were able to offer a viable solution, the
sar hamashkim remembered Yosef and said (as the song goes), " I know of a bloke in jail, Who is hot on dreams, Could explain old Pharaoh's tale."
The pasuk states that he prefaced his words with the following:
וַיְדַבֵּר֙ שַׂ֣ר הַמַּשְׁקִ֔ים אֶת־פַּרְעֹ֖ה לֵאמֹ֑ר אֶת־חֲטָאַ֕י אֲנִ֖י מַזְכִּ֥יר הַיּֽוֹם׃
The chief cupbearer then spoke up and said to Pharaoh, I must make mention today of my offenses.
What exactly was his transgression, and against whom did he sin?
Rabbi Moshe Alshich (1508-1593) comments that the sar hamashkim felt he had sinned against Yosef, as he states:
את חטאי - מה שחטאתי ליוסף שלא הזכרתיו עד הנה
My sin to Yosef that I have not remembered him until now.
The sar hamashkim, 10 years later, remembered the favor that Yosef did for him while they were in jail together. Finally, after 10 years, he showed hakarat hatov by recommending Yosef to the king, which ultimately spurred Yosef's release from prison.
We discussed with the students that it's never too late to show hakarat hatov. A good activity is to think about someone who made a difference in your life and call that person to express your gratitude.
We also discussed that one can show hakarat hatov by recommending a person for a job in thanks for the good work they provided, which will help the person get other jobs. Writing a positive review on a website in order to help a business attract more patrons is another example of showing your hakarat hatov.
Thoughts of the Rav
by Rabbi Dov Huff
When we think about the appropriate place for the laws of Hallel in our sifrei halacha, our books of law, we would likely look towards hilchot tefilla. Since the recitation of Hallel is done as part of tefilla, it would seem appropriate to place the laws of Hallel in the sections about prayer. This is, in fact, what the Shulchan Aruch does. 
Interestingly, the Rambam does not. In the Mishneh Torah, one can find the halachot pertaining to Hallel right in the middle of Hilchot Chanukah. The Rav explains the reason for this is that the function of Hallel is giving praise to Hashem, and giving praise to Hashem is at the very core of the meaning of Chanukah. The underlying theme, the reason we light candles in the places and at the times that we do, the emphasis on pirsumei nisah - all flow from this idea, which is the very essence of Chanukah. 
Pinat HaParasha
Please click here  to view the  Pinat  HaParasha for Parshat Miketz. You are encouraged to print the document and use it as a source for discussion at the Shabbat table.
After-School Make-Up Classes Next Week
Next week,  December 18-21, is a make-up week for the After-School Program. 
The only After-School classes next week will be: 

Monday, December 18 
  • Art
  • Zumba
Thursday, December 21 
  • Coding for Kids
If your child normally takes any other After-School classes, please make arrangements to pick them up at dismissal time next week.
Chanukah Activities
This week we enjoyed a number of activities in celebration of Chanukah. The week began with the shlichot visiting all the classrooms and helping the students make decorations. Their theme was showing hakarat hatov for the good qualities each of us have, and how the combined "light" of our collective strengths makes each of us stronger.  On Wednesday the shlichot organized a Maccabia with three different activities, all relating to Chanukah. And today we enjoyed an Oneg Shabbat during lunch with singing, doughnuts, and fun!

Next week we have even more events planned to celebrate the chag together!

Important Cold Weather Reminder
Although the cold New England winter weather has arrived, we continue to enjoy outdoor recess unless the temperature is below 20 degrees. Students should be reminded that they must bring warm winter coats, hats (or hoods), and gloves to school each day. They are required to bring these out to recess with them, but may take off layers as they warm up when playing outdoor recess games. When there is snow on the ground, students need to wear boots in order to walk on snowy areas and snow pants if they want to play in the snow. Students will not be permitted to stay indoors during recess.

Family Learning on Sunday

PTA Pizza and Chanukah Celebration on Tuesday
We are so excited Chanukah is here!

Next Tuesday there will be a mesibat Chanukah for the Early Childhood Center and Elementary School. We will be serving pizza and latkes. There will also be dancing and lots of ruach to help celebrate Chanukah!

We are looking for parent volunteers to help set up the mesibah, distribute the food, and help our children celebrate Chanukah! Please email if you are able to help out on Tuesday from 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m

Thank you and Happy Chanukah!

Floor Hockey Unit in Physical Education
Please Send Mouth Guards
The 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders will be starting their floor hockey unit in gym class after winter break, and it will last approximately three weeks. The school will provide eye protection (goggles/ masks), and it is advised to send a mouth guard for your child to use during this unit. Mouth guards can be purchased at most sporting goods stores.

STEM Update
This week the Kindergarten class worked on their community project. They set up all the different businesses one might find in a community. Then they used their knowledge of algorithms to create programs for the KIBO robot to drive from place to place inside their community!


Mazel Tov!

Send us your simchas!  Please share your simcha announcement s with us by send ing details to
Lost and Found - השבת אבידה
With the arrival of cold weather, we have found more and more jackets, sweatshirts, sweaters, hats, and gloves left outside at recess and in other public spaces in the building.  We have amassed a large collection of high-quality, fairly new winter clothing, none of them bearing any students' names. 

We request again that you put your child's names on their items so that we can easily return them when found.  Most jackets and coats come with sewn-in labels which only require a Sharpie to write your child's name.

We plan to donate all remaining unclaimed items during the winter break.
Next Town Hall Meeting in Brookline
The Maimonides School Board of Directors
invites parents to a
Town Hall Meeting
Thank you to everyone who attended the Town Hall Meeting in Sharon this week.  It was a valuable evening of meaningful conversation.    
Steven Schwartz, Board Chair, and Naty Katz, Head of School, look forward to meeting with more of you after winter break, listening to your suggestions and concerns, and benefiting from this opportunity for open dialogue.

These meetings are intended to focus on the non-academic issues within the purview of the Board such as day school affordability, financial matters, and other topics of interest to the community.     
The second Town Hall Meeting will take place Wednesday, January 3 at 7:30 p.m. in Brookline - click here to respond

Please check your e-mail for full details of the meeting location, or write to for more information.
There will be ample opportunity for questions and discussion during the meeting. To help us prepare, we encourage you to submit questions in advance to
We look forward to an evening of engaging conversation with you.

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.  
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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