The Mitzvah Program

In the seder we are told this quote:

כָּל דִכְפִין יֵיתֵי וְיֵיכֹל, כָּל דִצְרִיךְ יֵיתֵי וְיִפְסַח

Let all who are hungry come and eat,

let all who are in need come and make Pesach.

This is telling us about how if anyone needs help we should invite them to our seder.  We are told this because we were oppressed at a point and we do not want to oppress anyone.  The story is about how we got freedom so we want everyone to be free and have food.

At the MJGDS I have been doing the mitzvah program for the past three years.  In this program, we go around the community and do various acts of kindness.  Many times we have helped feed the homeless or just give food to those who need it.  We try our best to make sure that everyone has food or that we at least have a helpful impact on someone’s day.

The mitzvah program has shown me how lucky I am.  So many people have worked their whole lives and have nothing to show, but I was born into so much.  I try to help anyone I can through either the mitzvah program or giving food to homeless on the street.  In the future, if I ever see someone needy I will remember the mitzvah program.

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Purim & Anti-SemitismI

Purim is a huge holiday for the Jews.  When most people think of Purim they think of costumes, parties, and fun, but this should not necessarily be the case.  Although those are all traditions they are not what the holiday is about.  It is about the Jews surviving a huge threat to their safety.    The story is not about how we should wear costumes and party; instead, it is about how we stopped a huge act of anti-Semitism.

The story tells us about Haman who wanted to kill every Jew.  He did not want to kill us because we were all crime lords, he wanted to kill us because we were Jewish.  He was just an anti-Semite.  Then it tells us how we turned everything around by having the queen reveal she was Jewish.  It was Ironic because Haman worshiped the queen and she was a Jew.  This tells us that he did not hate their individual personalities he just wanted them dead.

These lessons can help us in the fight against racism and anti-Semitism today.  Anti-Semitism and racism are still a huge problem with society today that need to be fixed.  The story shows that if we can get the powerful people to help then maybe it will go away.  If all the world leaders banded together and helped with the issue then maybe it would not be an issue anymore.

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11th Commandment

We were asked what would we say if we were allowed to pick the 11th commandment.  After thinking about this for a while I decided on what to say.  I think it should be “Thou shall always put forth thy most effort” or translated “You should always put forth your most effort.”  I say this because most of the time I don’t put much effort in and still get good grades and do fine in everything.  This is bad because if I can get all A’s with no effort who knows how good I could be if I really tried.  For most things, it is really bad not to put too much effort so it would be good if everyone did things with a lot of effort.

Categories: 8th Grade, Jewish Studies, Journel, Language Arts, M.S. | 1 Comment

Tu B’Shvat

This past week we went to The Coves to celebrate Tu B’Shvat.  The Coves is apartments for seniors.  We celebrated Tu B’Shvat there because if we hadn’t then they might not have been able to celebrate it.  It is also important that we celebrate with them because the trees that we got to grow up with were planted by their generation so we could enjoy them.  If their generation hadn’t planted trees when they were young then our generation would not be able to grow up with trees.

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Trees are Good, Trees are Great

Next week is Tu B’Shvat the birthday of the trees.  Since it is Tu B’Shvat we should be talking about the environment.   One thing everyone should be doing for the environment is trying to make the world more eco-friendly.  For example, you can recycle, stop littering, use an electric car, or even just spread the word about what you can do to help.  You can also donate money to the Jewish National Fund to plant a tree in Israel.

Categories: 8th Grade, Jewish Studies, Journel, Language Arts | 1 Comment

Books

Jews are known as “the people of the book.”  This could be for two different reasons.  One of the reasons is that the Torah is known as the five books of Moses and we study that extensively.  Another reason is because a lot of Jews are just knowledgeable in general.  This week we built a “Free Little Library” for the preschool.  A “Free Little Library” is just a place where you can put books or take out books and return them based on the honor code.  It will be stocked with Jewish children’s books.  This is important because as I mentioned earlier “we are the people of the book” and the youngest of us should be reading about us.

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Dilations and Scale Factors

This week in math we have learned about dilations and scale factors.  In the example below, it shows that that the original rectangle had the sides with 4 and 1.  Then if we look at the second shape it has a scale factor of 5.  We can see this because on the first shape the number is 1 and then it becomes 5.  So if we draw the next shape with a dilation of 5 x will be 20.

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Anne Frank

“Despite everything I believe we are really good people at heart.”

This quote is from Anne Frank.  She had to live away from society in an attic for years and even then the war still got to her.  It showed that even when she was surrounded by fellow Jews the propaganda still got to her.  The fact that she had to say despite everything shows how bad the situation was.  It also shows that the propaganda did not work on her, though.  I am sure some Jews genuinely thought they were bad people because of what was happening, but she did not.

If I could ask her anything I would have to ask what the first week was like.  I wonder how she managed to not get in a fight and blow cover as a child in a new situation.  I am sure they did get in fights sometimes, but the fact that they managed to not yell in these fights is truly amazing.  It shows that some situations override normal human actions.

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Martin Luther King Jr.

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  He once said, “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”  This is saying that you have to take a step to help even if you do not see an end to it.   He is saying that even if you do not know the second or the third step you have to take the first step to help.    This is important because if everyone only helped if they know the entire course of action then very few people would help the world.

This still applies to the world today because people still need to do that.  It is not just for the big problems, but for little problems as well.  You should listen to him and follow this quote whenever anyone needs help.  He was one of the wisest men of the recent time and this quote just helps prove how smart he was.  We honor him every year because of how smart he was.  That shows how important it is to follow what he has said.

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Trapezoid

This week in math we learned about trapezoids.  We learned that the bottom and top are called the base.  The midsegment of the trapezoid is a line in the exact middle of the shape.  You can find out what the length of it is by adding both the bases and dividing them by two.  You can also find what the bases are by plugging the midsegment and one of the bases into the formula.

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