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December 11, 2022

Judaic Studies:  This week we focused on Jewish history in America. We started by discussing how life in America differs from Jews living in other parts of the world. Students discussed how we can, for the most part, not worry as much for our safety, have positions in our government and have equal rights with our neighbors. The first video we watched and discussed was about the first US Supreme Court Justice and President of the American Zionist Movement, Louis Brandeis. Students learned and discussed how Brandeis' argument that Jews wanting a homeland for the safety of Jews in unsafe lands would make us better Americans. The second video we watched was about the history of Jews in America, from the first Jews arriving in New Amsterdam in 1654 from Brazil to the current times. We ended class discussing how even in the darker moments in American history, we still help fast to our faith and the promise America has for us as a people.


Jewish Life & Culture:

- Hi all,
It is such a joy witnessing yet another classmates' bat mitzvah during Shabbat service and the support they give to each other. During class time we reflected on the significance of Hanukkah, Channukkah, Chanukah, even Xanuka according to some google searches. We delve deeper into the true significance of celebrating the rededication during Kislev, far away from the traditional harvest and festival holidays. Students shared their personal family customs and traditions used to celebrate the miracle. Some shared making latke parties for their gentile neighbors, while others loved how the family played endless games of dreidel. We also challenged our thinking regarding the increased commercialization and mirroring of Christianity during our celebrations, from gift giving to "Hanukkah bushes.” The most important conversations though were about tolerance and appreciating the various approaches we all exercise during our celebrations. Happy Chanukah!



Thu, July 18 2024 12 Tammuz 5784