November 9

November – A month to be thankful

November, Mar-Cheshvan – A month of Remembrance and the American Thanksgiving

The month of Cheshvan is known as Mar-Cheshvan (translates as either bitter or rainy ) which falls this year mostly in November. For much of Canada and the USA,  many schools, Governments, and organizations have a service to honor our veterans; a day of remembrance. In Israel, the month of November has 2  different days of remembrance. November 4 was the day our former Prime-Minister Yitzchak Rabin was murdered.  On November 9-10  we remember Kristallnacht -Night of the Broken Glass. This past week in class we discussed Kristallnacht.  Kristallnacht was just not another pogram attacking Jews. It was a period when the world became bystanders. 81 years later we still have antisemitism, and feelings of xenophobia throughout the world. What are we doing to combat this? How are we protecting our children today?

At the end of the month of November, Americans will be celebrating Thanksgiving  Families will sit around the table eating turkey, watching football, and taking a moment to discuss what they are thankful for.  Being thankful is my response to how we are protecting our Jewish future.

I am thankful that all of you – Parents, and Students attend Ottawa JEWISH Community Day School.

November 5

Grade 7 Kohelet

Compare the Pesuking in Chapter 3 to the Elton John song, “Circle of Life”.

How do the lyrics of the song mirror what is in Kohelet and how do they differ?


This integrated perspective illustrates the point that the TANACH is not just another subject. It is part of a holistic learning experience that incorporates all areas of instruction. The TANACH is  not just a history book.  Kohelet deals with the core issues of human existence that are part of an integrated perspective of looking at the world

November 3

Grade 7 Neviim

Due at the end of class today:

Please choose which judge you want to focus on. What did you choose this specific Judge?

Who were the Shoftim?

The theme of the Judges’ leadership was spiritual maintenance. While the Jews were led by these dynamic personalities, they maintained their relationship with G-d, and during the brief intermissions of leadership between shoftim’s terms, they neglected their relationship with G-d. The shoftim’s role was more reactive than proactive, repairing breaches in the dam of Jewish identity as opposed to building and fortifying new dams.

1. The Names and Dates   (for more info –

a) Otniel Ben-Knaz ruled from 1228 to 1188 BCE;

b) Ehud Ben-Gerah ruled from 1188 to 1107 BCE;

c) Shamgar Ben-Anat ruled during Ehud’s final years, died 1107 BCE;

d) Devorah (the only woman among the Judges) ruled from 1107 to 1067 BCE;

e) Gideon Ben-Yo’ash ruled from 1067 to 1027 BCE;

f) Avimelech Ben-Gideon ruled from 1027 to 1024 BCE;

g) Tolah Ben-Puah ruled from 1024 to 1001 BCE;

h) Yair HaGil’adi ruled from 1003 to 981 BCE (overlapping Tolah and Yiftach);

i) Yiftach HaGil’adi ruled from 982 to 976 BCE;

j) Ivtzan ruled from 976 to 969 BCE,

k) Eylon HaZevulon’i ruled from 969 to 959 BCE;

l) Avdon Ben-Hillel HaPir’atoni ruled from 959 to 951 BCE;

m) Shimshon ruled from 951 to 931 BCE;

n) Ayli HaKohen ruled from 931 to 891 BCE; and

o) Shmuel Hanavi ruled from 890 to 877 BCE.

2. The Warriors

Many of the Shoftim led the Jewish people into battle against foreign powers who held military domination over ancient Israel during their reigns. These warriors include Otniel Ben-Knaz, Ehud, Devorah, whose army routed the Canaanites, and of course, Shimshon, whose legendary physical strength crushed the might and morale of the Philistines during his reign and for twenty years after his death.

3. The Career Highlights

While some of the Judges are sparsely described, and others’ careers are richly detailed, each of the Judges offered their unique contributions. Most engaged in political and/or military battles with hostile kingdoms and forces surrounding Israel, while others maintained short and/or peaceful rules. Above all, though, they were judges—above their political and social duties, they judged their people, serving as Halachic authorities in all cases of Jewish law.

November 3

Grade 7 Ketuvim

Please listen to Turn! Turn! Turn! by the Byrds.

  1. Please respond to the following: “This song argues that there is a time for everything under the sun. What lesson do you take from this assertion?”

    One of the possible lessons in Ecclesiastes 3 is that life is all about balance.
    In order to feel fulfilled, one has to accept the bad experiences along with the positive
    and enjoyable.

  2. Please read the following Statements from Ecclesiastes. 
    • Choose three verses that matter to you. What are your reasons for choosing these statements and if there have been times in their lives when they became aware of the necessity of balancing the
    experiences in the three verses they chose?

Due at the end of class today

November 1

Parshat Noach and Multiple Intelligences

Dr. Howard Gardner introduced the world to Multiple Intelligences. Reading my previous Parshat Post, Dr. Gardner would characterize the Parsha Players’ play as a Parsha which highlighted the spatial intelligence.

Another example of multiple intelligences is auditory. This week one of the 7th-grade students presented a rap about Parshat Noach.

Enjoy and Shabbat Shalom

October 29

Grade 8 Update

Yesterday for me was the true essence why I love working in a Jewish Day School. In the morning Dr. Mitzmacher had a meeting with the community Rabbis. After the meeting was over, Rabbi Finkelstein, entered both Grade 8 and Grade 7 classes to say hello and more importantly teach Torah.  The opportunity for the students to hear, “Living Torah” is what makes OJCS Great!