May 26, 2017                     Parshiot Bamidbar                1 Sivan, 5777 
In This Issue
D'var Torah
Rav Thoughts
Color War
Day of Learning
Yom Chesed
Absence Notifications
Division Newsletters
Online Photo Galleries
Quick Links
Find Maimonides On:
Dear Middle School Families,   

We're sure your children told you all about this year's four-way Color War on Yom Yerushalayim! We hope you'll enjoy the images included here.

We'd like to take this opportunity to wish you a chag sameach for Shavuot next week. Because of the shortened school week, there will not be a newsletter next week. The next newsletter will be sent out on Friday, June 9.

Please read on for a d'var Torah, a thought from the works of Rav Soloveitchik, and some highlights from the week.
Shabbat Shalom!  

Brian Cohen
Associate Principal, Middle School     
D'var Torah

by Rabbi Dov Huff

Much like Sefer ShmotSefer Bamidbar carefully details a construction. But while the construction of Sefer Shmot is the building of a structure, the construction of Sefer Bamidbar is the building of a machane - a camp. The materials making up this structure are individuals. They are counted and organized by households and tribes. We are told how to assemble them around the Mishkan, and then what their function is.

The beginning of this week's parsha is more than a census. It is the Torah taking inventory to ensure the presence of all the material necessary to create a holy camp and a Jewish nation. Chazal refer to Sefer Bamidbar as Chumash Hapekudim - the book of counting. But the root p.k.d. has more of a connotation of "appointing." This sefer is not just about counting; it is about assigning a role and a responsibility to the members of our machane.

In building this machane, we see the Torah maintaining the identity of each individual, even as they become part of a greater whole. Rather than just take one large count, the people are counted by ancestral family and by tribe. The tribes are grouped around the Mishkan and each one has their own unique flag.

This machane is a unit which is only as strong as its individual components. As a unit, this machane must carry the covenant of Har Sinai to Eretz Yisrael, but this can only be done by recognizing the unique talents of each individual.

Rav Thoughts
by Rabbi Dov Huff
Chazal tell us that a difference between the first luchot and the second was that the first luchot contained not only Torah shebichtav but also the Torah shebeal peh, while the second set was only the Torah shebichtav.
The Rav explains that the difference in content of the two sets also points to a different job for Moshe Rabbeinu. With the first set, Moshe Rabbeinu was just a shliyach leholacha - a messenger delivering the entire body of Torah to Bnei Yisrael. Upon delivery his job would be complete. With the second set, he was now tasked with teaching all of Torah shebeal peh to Am Yisrael. He become the Rebbe of each individual Jew. 
It is for this reason, says the Rav, that in this week's parsha Moshe had to do a count. He now had to take responsibility for the Torah growth of each member of Am Yisrael.
The big news this week was the annual Middle School Color War! Teams Blue, Yellow, Green, and Red competed against each other in a wide array of sports, arts, creativity, and team spirit. The results were incredible!

Color War began with team meetings with captains and faculty advisors

All four teams cheered on their competitors
during the relay races

Origami and chess competitions were a
new addition to Color War!

The teams ate a celebratory
Yom Yerushalayim lunch with their teammates

Each team presented a "Stomp"
performance to the entire Middle School

The teams then showed off their artistic abilities with beautiful team murals, designed and made in just one day.

Kol HaKavod!

Day of Learning
Thank you to Peppie and Mark Schlesinger for sponsoring a Day of Learning today in honor of the birthday of their grandson, Ethan Ravid, in Grade 2.

To learn more about sponsoring a Day of Learning, please contact Ellen Pulda, (617) 232-4452 or

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,

Absences and Tardy Notifications

We wish that none of our students ever felt ill -- we'd love to have 100% attendance every day -- but we know that germs don't always listen to our desires!

However, we do need to know where our students are.
If your child needs to miss a day of school,
or will be tardy or leave early, please be certain to inform Sharona Vedol in the Middle School office
by email:

Please remember:
We are not using the absence hotline this year!
All absence notifications must come in via email. 
We ask that you e-mail the office for safety reasons -- it allows for far more efficient accounting of student absences .

Division Newsletters
Lots of wonderful things are happening at Maimonides School!

If you'd like to take a peek at the other divisions' newsletters, please click here for the Elementary and Upper Schools, or click here for the Early Childhood Center.

If you would like to contact a specific school office, please use these emails:
On behalf of the entire Middle School:
Shabbat Shalom, and Chag Kasher V'Sameach!
Brian Cohen

MS logo, medium size