Upper School Weekly Update

March 23, 2018  -  Tzav/Shabbat HaGadol

In This Issue
D'var Torah
Thoughts of the Rav
Chidon HaTanach
No Newsletter Next Week
English Elective
Melacha Fair
11th Grade Shabbaton
Financial Aid Deadline
Purple Day
Spirit Sale
Baseball Tournament
Division Newsletters
Social Media
Next Week 
Monday, March 26  
Special speaker: 6th period
Purple Day

Tuesday, March 27 
Regular schedule
Spirit Sale: lunch and X-Block
Jazz Band concert in memory of Michael Maleson z"l: 1:30-2:30
Wednesday, March 28
Regular schedule

Pesach break begins 
end of day
Chag Sameach!

In Two Weeks
Have a wonderful Pesach!
See you April 9th!

Having a

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D'var Torah
by Rabbi Dov Huff 

 זכור את היום הזה אשר יצאתם ממצרים
This pasuk from Parshat Bo is the commandment which serves as the blueprint for the design of the seder experience. Beyond the daily mitzvah to remember the exodus, we have a special mitzvah on the night of the 15th of Nissan: To recall the wondrous miracles Hashem did for us as we transformed from a large family into a nation. The Rambam in the Mishna Torah (Sefer Zmanim Hilchot Chametz Umatzah 7:1) likens this to the mitzvah of remembering Shabbos -   זכור את יום השבת לקדשו .
At the AIPAC Policy Conference earlier this month, I had the pleasure of hearing from Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter. He spoke to us in a special session about Pesach. He asks how we are supposed to fulfill these two mitzvot of memory: Remembering one thing (the exodus) that we did not experience, and one (Shabbos) that has not yet happened. Chazal tell us that the zachor of Shabbos means zachreihu al hayayin -- remember it by making kiddush on wine. This, says Rabbi Schacter, is not an act of memory but something else. He suggests that the shoresh z.c.r is not about recalling an event, but about making it important. This is in the spirit of the practice of Shammai Hazaken to save the best foods he would come across during the week for Shabbos. This zechirah is an act of elevating experiences, focusing, and emphasizing milestone spiritual events.
This idea resonated with me. How great is the status of Pesach in my life because my parents and my teachers made it important! As a child, learning the halachot, scouring the house for chametz, and spending hours at the seder delving into each word made an impression on me that has never faded. We give many messages to our kids explicitly, but sometimes the ones that make the greatest impression are the ones they pick up by observing the things which we make important. Sometimes what we do makes a greater impact than what we say. This is Rabbi Dr. Haym Soloveitchik's mimetic tradition - the mesorah that our kids pick up by watching what we do. 
May we all have a Shabbos and Pesach in which we successfully elevate these moments and experiences so they make a lasting impression, which our kids will internalize and take with them always. 
Questions for the Shabbos table:
  1. What was your takeaway from the d'var Torah this morning?
  2. Can you think of a moment that made an impression on you because of something your parents or teachers did?
  3. What things about Shabbos and Pesach make them important to you?
Thoughts of the Rav 

by Rabbi David Saltzman          
וּפֶתַח אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד תֵּשְׁבוּ יוֹמָם וָלַיְלָה שִׁבְעַת יָמִים וּשְׁמַרְתֶּם אֶת מִשְׁמֶרֶת ה ' וְלֹא תָמוּתוּ כִּי כֵן צֻוֵּיתִי :
And you shall stay day and night for seven days at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting. You shall observe the Lord's command, so that you will not die, for thus I was commanded.
The Rav states that proper preparation is a necessary condition for any encounter with holiness. For example, in the prelude to giving the Torah, the people were cautioned not to go near their wives for three days. Similarly, in our parasha, Aaron had to submit to a seven-day preparation period prior to the dedication of the Mishkan, and every Kohen Gadol went through a similar sequestration prior to Yom Kippur. Both involved an encounter with holiness.
The same is true of Shabbat. One is not worthy of celebrating it unless one prepares for it. The Rambam states that it is a mitzvah to wash one's hands, face, and feet in hot water on Friday afternoon before Shabbat in order to honor Shabbat.
Holiness does not arrive suddenly; it only comes from the invitation inherent in the act of preparation.
Six Students to Compete in Chidon HaTanach Finals
Mazal tov to the six Maimonides students who have qualified for this year's
Chidon HaTanach! This national Bible competition, sponsored by the Jewish Agency, is for American Jewish youth in grades 6-11. The national finals will be held in New York in late April. Four champions from the New York contest win the opportunity to represent the USA in the subsequent International Contest, which takes place in Jerusalem on Yom Ha'atzmaut
and is nationally televised in Israel.
The finalists from Maimonides are 6th graders Ephraim Fischer and Binyamin Orkaby; 7th grader Kaveh Libson; 10th grader Shira Sokolinski; and 11th graders Elazar Cramer and Josh Schoenberg. The students have been studying additional sections from the books of Bereishit, Tehilim, Yehoshua, and Yechezkel throughout the year, and have qualified to advance from more than 500 nationwide participants. The Chidon HaTanach club is advised by Rabbi Yaakov Jaffe. Kol hakavod to all the Maimonides participants!
No Newsletter Next Week
Please note that due to the short week next week, our next newsletter will be sent on April 13 (the week after Pesach).  Best wishes for a chag kasher v'sameach!


Learning About Children's Literature
Ms. Megan Hamilton's 12th grade English elective, Where the Wild Things Are: Reading and Writing Children's Literature, had a Skype session recently with children's book author Sharon Reiss Baker. 
Baker has written two children's books - A Nickel, A Trolley, A Treasure House and All Kinds of Strong - that depict the everyday lives of Jewish children early in the 20th century. In their conversation, the students learned how much say an author has over the illustrations (almost none!), how long it can take to go from contract to publication (seven years!), and that sometimes stories take on a life of their own. For example, Sharon began her most recent book as a middle grade novel about a young boy, but after a draft realized she was actually writing a young adult novel about his sister. 

9th and 10th Grade Melacha Fair Scheduled for April 10!
Parents of 9th and 10th graders: Please mark Tuesday, April 10th on your calendars for a Melacha Fair, which will take place after dismissal. 

More information will be sent in an email next week.

On the Road with the Class of 2019
Our 11th grade visited New Jersey and New York for a wonderful Shabbaton last weekend. Shabbat was spent in the Teaneck community, where our students were treated to warm hospitality. On Sunday the group embarked on a grand tour of the Big Apple which included visits to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, as well as a stop in the Financial District, before heading up to Yeshiva University for dinner.

Financial Aid Application Deadline

The deadline for submitting the required tax documentation for the 2018-19 school year is April 19.
The link to the financial aid page on the school website is
Please contact Arline Tannenbaum at ext. 425 or atannenbaum@maimonides.org with any questions.

Monday is Purple Day at Maimonides!

Purple Day is an international grassroots effort to increase awareness about epilepsy worldwide.  Students will hear from a guest speaker as well as from one of our 8th grade students, Yakir Galler from HopeTimeCure, an organization that works to educate about epilepsy.  There will be purple cupcakes for sale, purple games during lunch, and lots of great information.  Please remind your child to wear purple on Monday!   

Spirit Sale
Ezra Schwartz Memorial Baseball Tournament
The second Ezra Schwartz Memorial Baseball Tournament in Sharon is coming up and will take place from April 19-22. Visiting teams will be from the Frisch School, Yeshivah of Flatbush, and Yeshiva University High School of Los Angeles (YULA). Ezra, זק"ל , a 2015 Maimonides graduate and varsity baseball player, was killed by a terrorist in Israel in November 2015. The tournament was established by family and friends to honor Ezra's passion for baseball and create a fun environment in which to remember him. More information can be found at http://ezraschwartzbaseballmemorial.com/.
See What's Happening in 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, Elementary School, or Middle School newsletter pages.

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