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Celebrating our Bar Mitzvah Year
May 9th, 2014


In This Issue

  1. Israel's 66th Independence Day - Article from The Times of Israel
  2. Yom HaShoa
  3. Yom Hazikaron: We Remember
  4. Yom Ha'atzmaut: We Celebrate
  5. True Leadership at MJDS
  6. Cake Recipe
  7. Calendar Reminders
  8. A Special Testimonial
  9. And here are the pictures!


Israel's 66th Indepndence Day - Article form the Times of Israel

Miriam Peretz receiving the Torch on the 66th anniversary of Israel's independence



This year 14 women were selected to light the ceremonial torches at the Mount Herzl event which began the celebration of Israel's 66th Independence Day, each with remarkable achievements and an inspiring life story. Why is this memorable? Because it is the first time that all of the people selected have been women. At the behest of Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat, the focus of this year's ceremony was "A time for women - achievements and challenges."

Our Judiac Studies teachers discussed the importance of this event with the children in a manner that was appropriate to their ages. Read this article for more information on each of the incredible women who played an important role in this year's celebrations.

Yom Hashoa

 In commemoration of Yom HaShoa Students in Shalhevet and Rimon had the honour of meeting John Freund, Holocaust survivor and writer whose father, mother and brother all perished in Auschwitz.

John was born in Czechoslovakia and, as a young boy lived a happy life in a small town, Ceske Budejovice. He told the children that his family was well-off because they had a car. His father was a pediatrician and when the Nazis took over Czechoslovakia they took his licence to practise medicine. John and his family were sent to Theresienstadt and later to Auschwitz, where John was saved by being selected for slave labour while his family were sent to be killed. He survived the death march and returned to his home town where he waited with a neighbour for his family to return. Of course that did not happen and when he heard of a possibility of moving to Canada he took it. He married Norah, a fellow Czech, here in Toronto, they raised three daughters and have ten grandchildren. 

It was hard not to be moved by John's immense courage and dignity. His gentleness and soft-spoken delivery betrayed no bitterness, only a desire to share the truth of the past with the children today. It was a great privilege to hear him speak. The children knew he had written poetry and have made a collection of their own poems to send to him in gratitude for his generosity in sharing his story.

After we bid John goodbye, Stav and Oded escorted Shalhevet to the Holocaust Memorial in Earl Bales for which they had prepared thoughtful readings to help the children reflect. The students also searched for names they knew on the memorial and read some of the history. They sat in reflection for a time. Then they read of events where people had to make impossible choices in order to survive the Holocaust. It was solemn, peaceful and perfectly appropriate and the children responded thoughtfully and respectfully. 

Thank you Oded and Stav and thank you Sarit for inviting John to speak to us. We know you all visited him first and organized it so that the children were able to obtain a copy each of his memoir.

Catherine and Yaniv

Yom Hazikaron: We Remember

We remember



This year both Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha'atzmaut were especially meaningful to the children because of our Shinshinim. The children in Shalhevet love the activities that Stav and Oded put together; they always go to them enthusiastically and on this occasion that enthusiasm was paired with a solemnity and feeling of courage and pride as the children read - in the weeks leading up to Yom Hazikaron - about the young soldiers who have lost their lives.

The idea that people would give the ultimate sacrifice to care for those they love and make this world a safe and wonderful place for us all was then felt on Yom Ha'atzmaut when the children played traditional Israeli games, sang Israeli Karaoke songs and feasted on Israeli salad and cake - all with laughter and camaraderie.

Oded and Stav, both being young, smart and beautiful are an example of what Israel has become and an inspiration for what the children can become.

Yom Ha'atzmaut: We Celebrate

Yom Ha'atzmaut Cake


Tuesday was filled with excitement and a great sense of community as MJDS celebrated Israel's 66th birthday on Yom Ha'atzmaut. The Middle School students and the Shinshinim organized various activities for their younger peers to enjoy.


The toddlers made Israeli flags in an art activity. The Casa children visited four different "stations" prepared for them: they decorated marshmallows, created mosaic Israeli flags, made a sparkling hamsa and enjoyed placing their 'I Love Israel' tattoos on different parts of their bodies.


For the Lower and Upper Elementary classes the Middle School students organized games, activities, and riddles that would engage the older students. Not to mention the face painting and the cake in the shape of the number 66 that was created by the Upper Elementary students.


The love for Israel was present at every point in the day that ended with the entire school gathering in the gym for Hebrew karaoke and dancing.   Witnessing the enjoyment of the younger children as the Middle School students led them through each activity showcases what MJDS is all about: a community of engaged learners reveling in the joys of Israeli life.
True Leadership at MJDS 


Events of the magnitude that we witnessed over the past couple of days don't just happen. It is remarkable to see that 13 and 14 year olds can plan, prepare and execute a full day of activities for 90+ 3 to 12 year olds! The Middle School students had been preparing the activities for over a week, and with a little help from the staff and the Shinshinim, they created a very special day for all their younger peers. All of the planning paid off, and the smiles all around were evidence enough.

The Middle School students are very grateful to Tamara Rebick for the Leadership Training sessions she offered earlier in the year as it helped them organize and plan everything for Yom Ha'aztmaut. They gained an appreciation for all of the work and planning that is required to run a day full of activities for an entire school to enjoy. Thank you also to Sarit for her support and for making it possible for all the students to have such a meaningful and rewarding experience.

A Cake Recipe 
Cake Recipe

At great request from our parents, here is the recipe that was used to make the delicious cake that the Upper Elementary baked.

Mix together:

3 eggs

1 cup of sugar



� cup of oil

1 � cups of orange juice

1 � cups of flour

� tsp of baking powder

1 Vanilla Instant Pudding

� cup of coconut (optional)


Mix well and bake for 45 minutes at 180 C/350 F. Enjoy!


A Special Testimonial


Thank you very much to everyone! We couldn't have done anything without the on-going support and help from all of the staff.

We are truly happy to be given the chance to work with such an incredible community, MJDS is by far the best school in Toronto!!!!!!!!!!


Oded and Stav

Calendar Reminders

May 12 - PD Day Camp for Friday May 16th- Registration Due Date
                  Picture Orders are Due
May 16 - MJDS Summer Camp - Registration Due Date

May 23 - Caf� Theatre - Magen David Level 1


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