MARCH 22, 2016 | The Jewish Home
Around the Community
YOSS Puts Emphasis on Tefillah
ach morning while walking the hallways of the yeshiva elementary school, one can hear the cacophony of the sweet sounds of Tinokos Shel Beis Rabban raising their voices in tefillah. The sincerity, the melody and the neshama of the davening are heartwarming. In the mechina division, the level of the kavanah and kavod hatefillah has been raised from wonderful to exceptional. To what does the yeshiva owe this growth? Obviously there is a concerted effort among the Rabbeim and Hanhala to implement tools and strategies into the teaching of tefilla in every classroom. YOSS invited Rabbi Maimon Elbaz, renowned mechanech and mashpiah, to deliver his famous virtual reality slideshow portraying the essence of tefillah. He presented his show to the 6th through 8th grade boys on Shmoneh Esrei and to the younger division on Birchas Hashachar. Rabbi Elbaz regaled the boys in his unique and dynamic style
as he showed his visually stimulating slideshow while sprinkling riddles throughout and offering prizes for correct answers. Needless to say, when the program was over, the boys were left wanting more. Rabbi Judowitz, a seventh grade rebbe, commented at the end of the one hour show, “Why did it have to end so soon? The kids were totally absorbed and could have sat another hour and a half!” The visit by Rabbi Elbaz was sponsored l’iluy nishmas Rebbetzin Kamenetzky, Tziral bas R’ Pinchus Eliyahu, a”h. Another major item is the Yeshiva’s usage of “Tefillah Power” workbooks written by Rabbi Heshy Kleinman, author of the very popular Praying with Fire books. Grades 4 through 8 utilize these beautifully crafted books each day. The book is a masterpiece work created by Rabbi Kleinman which translates and highlights key elements of the daily tefillah. The book is replete with stories, mashalim and pictures pre-
pared specifically for different grade levels. The boys truly enjoy reading these glossy colorful pages because they are pleasing to the eye, the lessons are easy to digest and the activities are fun. “I don’t know how to explain it but my students’ davening has soared lately. They are so serious about it. I don’t know what to do with some boys who now take
over an hour to daven Shacharis. It’s a phenomenal thing!” commented Rabbi Ackerman, a fourth grade rebbe. Additionally, the mechina division has recently instituted a “Shtikah B’tefillah” and the “Davening Starts” initiatives as well. Clearly, the efforts to raise the level of tefillah at the Yeshiva of South Shore are certainly bearing fruit.