September 20th, 2019
20th of Elul, 5779 

School Logo


    Parshat Ki Tavo
Candle Lighting at 7:02 PM

A "Sound" Mind
We're twenty days into Elul- are you awake yet?

"I did everything you asked, I didn't omit any directive, and .... I didn't forget, " the farmer declares upon bringing his tithes. Is it not obvious from his offering that he did not forget anything, that he properly did what he should, followed all directives and deleted no detail. What, then, is the Torah commanding this farmer to proclaim in this seemingly superfluous and enigmatic confession?
Explains the Sefas Emes, so many people sleepwalk through life, going through the motions in a mindless, soulless state, with no conscious memory of what they do, hear, say, pray, or eat. They are on autopilot, and though omitting no detail, they are unconscious. The farmer's proclamation is a testament not only to fulfilling his required tithings, but to having done so consciously and mindfully, hence authentically and meaningfully. A mindless life, even if filled with mitzvot and productivity, is meaningless living. We fulfill the acts -- they don't fulfill us.
Mindfulness is a choice.
Incredible as it may seem, Yeshiva High School students can sleepwalk through their high school years in a zombie like state. Or, they can choose to engage in the dizzying potpourri of activities, recharge from the electrifying energy that permeates our corridors, relish the challenge of our stimulating classes, and open their hearts and souls to the inspiration of our daily davening and programs.
The First Step toward teshuva is awareness. The confluence of the messages of Parshat Ki Tavo with the sounds of the diurnal Elul blasts of the Shofar is a potent reminder to wake up and live our lives, cognizant of every moment in recognition of the cornucopia of blessings that He has gifted to us.
Wishing you all a ketiva v'chatima tova. 
Shabbat Shalom,
Mrs. Ora Lee Kanner

Upcoming Events
Sept. 21st  
Annual Selichot Program at Young Israel of Hollywood 9:15 PM - 11:59 PM
Sept. 24th
Meet and Greet in Boca at 7:45 
Sept. 29th - Oct. 1st
Rosh Hashanah Break  
Good & Welfare

Noah ('10) and Debbie (Epstein '10) Lasko on the birth of their son, Jordan James.
Alixandra (Greenberger '10) and Adam Markoff on the birth of their son, Coby Isaac.
Claudia and Doug Cohen on the passing of Doug's beloved mother, Gertrude Gittie Gordon (Gloria Cohen)

Cross Country and  Golf Tee Off
Hear From Storm Captains and Future Olympians About Their Inner Motivations
Graphic by Ariella Mayer ('23) and Rebecca Adler ('23)
Cross Country Interview by Al Dimont ('20) and Liora Mayer ('20)
Golf Interview by Sydney Freedman ('20) and Ben Blaine ('20)

Al: How are you doing today?

Liora: Great, Baruch Hashem! How about you?

Al: Good! Wasn't that last cross country meet crazy?! The boys team got first place for the first time! How did the girls team do?

Liora: We got second place as a team, but more important than our score is that we all pushed ourselves. I'm super proud of us!

Al: So how do you feel about our team overall?

Liora: Our team is really awesome and we have committed people who all just want to have a good time and get a good workout. We all encourage each other and push each other to do our best. It's really a family. I love it!

Al: I think our coaches are also really great and they have a lot of pride in us. Our coaches give us the tools to do our best and also motivate us to push harder. 

Liora: They are super motivational. How do you stay motivated on your own? How do you not give up?

Al: My motivation is to keep keeping my head clear and keep keeping my body in shape. And yeah, throughout the run I'm dying inside. I just have to make sure not to die on the outside.

Liora: How did you start running in the first place?

Al: Before ninth grade I used to bike every day for exercise. This allowed me to build up endurance. I then joined the cross country team and realized I did well. After that, I just kept running for the past three years. How about you?

Liora: I honestly didn't know the cross country team was a thing back in ninth grade. Then in tenth grade I tried out. I had never run before but now I do and love it!

Al: So where do you see our team going in the future? Do you think we'll win more meets?

Liora: New Jersey, hopefully. I don't know if we will win anymore meets but all that matters is we try our best.
Ok last question: what's your go-to song to listen to while you run? Do you have one?

Al: WelI I make a new playlist every other month but sometimes I just shuffle all my songs. I think the Meg-Train (Meghan Trainor) definitely gets me going, though. How about you?

Liora: I don't listen to music when I run. I just focus on running and ignore everything else, especially the heat. Sometimes it's so hot that I pretend it's freezing outside in order to trick my brain. Often times, I just have to ignore it.

Al: If you don't have music to listen to, someone once told me another way to distract your mind from running. Do long multiplication in your head. Doing all of the calculations takes a lot of your brain's attention.

Liora: Yeah, that would take up a lot of time actually. By the time you finish the problem, five minutes could have passed! That's a really good idea, thanks, Al!

Sydney: Hi Ben!

Ben: Hi.

Sydney: So how's the season going so far?

Ben: Season's going great. We're actually the school's only undefeated sports team. We have the most potential compared to any other team. 

Sydney: What are your goals and expectations for the season? 

Ben: I'm expecting and hoping to have at least two solo regional qualifiers or for the team to qualify. 

Sydney: How has it has it been being on the team for four years? 

Ben: It has been the experience of a lifetime, being able to witness the growth of the team with Coach Don and Coach Seth!

Sydney: What do you think of having girls on the team for the first time this year? 

Ben: Well I'm concerned about the impact on my neshama (joking!) but overall I'm thrilled with the increased diversity on the team.

Sydney: How has the team changed? 

Ben: In the past three years, we've gone from being a train wreck of a team, with only four players, to the first team to qualify for regionals.

Sydney: Are you worried about the team next year after you graduate? 

Ben: No, the team is in the very capable hands of sophomore Eitan Wernick and I know that Don and Seth are capable of growing the team further.

Sydney: Wow. Sounds like the team is off to a great start and has a very promising future. Thanks for your time!

Ben: You're welcome. 

Three Shears For Morah Magali
Premier Hebrew Teacher Tells Her Origin Story
Graphic by Naomi Reichemberg ('20) and Devorah Lome ('20)
Article by Al Dimont ('20)   
Al: Where were you born? What was your childhood like?

Morah Magali: I was born in Kurdistan in a small village called Rizaya near the Urmiya lake. It was a place where Jewish people had lived since the exile of the Babylonians. The nature there was beautiful. I spoke Aramaic and Kurdish. My childhood was very interesting. When my family made Aliyah to Israel, Israel sent us to live in a place that had nothing. It was like before God created the world in the story of Beresheit; there were no houses, trees, or electronics, and barely any food, however, it was the beginning of something very special and unique. My family lived in a tent, and we had no teachers and no school. I became a shepherd and enjoyed nature and talking to God. Just me, Hashem above, and the earth of Eretz Israel.
Al: What was your experience of school when you were younger? How did you become interested in teaching?

Morah Magali: Originally, I wanted to be an actress and learned in the best theater school, Beit Tzvi in Ramat Gan. Then I decided to be a theater teacher so that I could use my skills to teach tough acting to kids. I hoped I could teach skills of drama (body language for example) and bring something new and different to students. I also wanted to create a curriculum with the students that would make them excited to learn.

Al: What is your favorite hobby outside of school?

Morah Magali: I like to write about and do research on people of different cultures. I published a book, Life Behind A Shutter, in both Hebrew and English. I also like designing jewelry, redecorating my home, and gardening.  

Al: What is your favorite memory of teaching?

Morah Magali: One of my best experiences of teaching was years ago when I was teaching on a carpet with pillows, plants, and flowers in the classroom. I had made the class look very unique with different learning stations set up. I was using music, dances, and plays to help the students learn. The best part was that the students themselves wanted to learn and understand. Another great experience as a teacher was when I fought for the students who were recommended to be in a special needs program. I kept them in my class and they did amazingly. I also enjoyed when I got to take my students to a Brazilian festival and they performed an oriental dance there. 

Tag, You're It! Teshuva Campaign Sweeps School
Faculty Challenges Students to Grow Before Rosh Hashanah
Graphic by Leanne Mizrahi-Mann ('23)
Article by Mishael Sommers ('23)

           A s we approach Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the students of KYHS will experience a Teshuvah campaign called TAG -- an abbreviation of the three pillars on which the world stands,
Torah, avodah, and gemilut chasadim. The campaign will happen in three stages.  First comes avodah (connection with Hashem). In boys' Gemara classes and girls' Chumash classes, teachers introduced Avodah Pledge Cards. Students were asked to think critically about their personal relationship with Hashem and to make a pledge related to their Avodat Hashem - service to God. Their goal is to fulfill these pledges until Yom Kippur and they are certainly encouraged  to continue with these pledges long after.  For gemilut chasadim (acts of kindness), students will have the opportunity to take part in a simple, yet meaningful act of kindness. In the cafeteria, there will be stations set up for students to pack toiletry bags filled with shampoo, soap, deodorant, and lotion. These will be distributed to families in the Bahamas who have suffered from the recent hurricane. Students can be involved for a few moments or the entire lunch period.  Torah (Torah learning) is the culmination of our TAG Yourself campaign, where the entire school will join together in the Beit Midrash to make a collective siyum on Chumash. Students will be assigned a chavruta - older students with younger ones - and learn one perek of Chumash. Our siyum will be made in memory of Ari Fuld z"l, whose yahrzeit will be the following Sunday. This promises to be a beautiful scene of Torah learning and unity. 

A Deeply Moving Message
Seniors Captivated by Stephanie Pollack's Story of Struggle, Loss, and Growth
Graphic by Aerin Tripp ('22)
Article by Avigail Greenberg ('20)

          This past week, the seniors had the privilege of hearing from Ms. Stephanie Pollak. Stephanie is an inspirational speaker from Hollywood, Florida who came to tell us about a tragic event in her life, what she made of it, and how she moved on.  A few years ago, her husband Motty passed away from a drug overdose. His addiction started after he had surgery back when he was in his late teens. At the time, Stephanie wasn't aware of his situation, but when they got married, he would often disappear or sleep all day. Large amounts of money would go missing from their bank account. Motty was not himself and Stephanie knew something was up. They held interventions and sent him to detox programs, and he went through periods of sobriety. Despite trying hard to get rid of the disease that is addiction, he ultimately relapsed. During these struggles, Stephanie got pregnant and had a baby boy. Raising their baby with a husband who couldn't be fully present was incredibly difficult for Stephanie, and she realized that she couldn't just be consumed by being a mother or the wife of an addict. She had to work to do things for herself to not lose her identity. Unfortunately, Motty died during the summer of 2014. Her attitude after his death was inspiring. She was able to look at her marriage as a "bridge" to finding herself and to personal growth. The way she handled an impossibly upsetting situation and continued to work to inspire and uplift others is truly incredible. We are lucky to have heard from her and hope she'll return to inspire future senior classes as well!

This Week In Pictures
The Yeshiva Highlites Staff