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Nissan 4, 5773 / March 15, 2013

Community Newsletter of the Maimonides Hebrew Day School of the Capital District Candle-Lighting: 404 Partridge Street Albany NY 12208 (518) 453-9363/3434 6:43

produced by Rabbi Mendel & students in the TNT (Torah ‘n Technology) Program Maimonides is accredited by the NYS Board of Regents & is a beneficiary of UJF-NENY

Shabbos Ends:


This newsletter is sponsored in honor of

Azriel Laber’s Bar-Mitzvah

celebration this Shabbos & Sunday

by his parents Rabbi Avraham & Nechama Laber and Family

SEDER IN THE KINDERGARTEN Kindergarteners made a model Seder this week and Morah Dini took photos of each step to be included in their very own Haggadahs to use at their families’ Seder on Pesach Night!

JOKES TO HELP YOU “MARCH” WITH A “SPRING” IN UR STEP! This bulletin board was pictured in last week’s “MC” but the caption got cut off, so here it is again: Mrs. Maher’s 5th graders put together this bulletin board in time for March and the start of springtime, and also in time for the last few days of the month of Adar, a time for joy!

DID YOU SEE “YALDAH”? Something was “wrong” with the most recent issue of this popular Jewish girls magazine, it was done on purpose and not by accident!

… AND A NURSERY SEDER TOO Nursery kids love learning about Pesach, and role-playing each step of the Seder. The props and dress-up get them into the spirit!

PESACH IS COMING! Contact Rabbi Rubin 423-4103 or your Rabbi to:  Arrange for the sale of your Chametz  Purchase Shmurah Matzah (at least for Seders)  Find a place for a Seder if not at your home  Ask Halacha questions as you shop/prepare  Contribute “Maos Chittim” for Passover needs of the poor in our community

DO YOU LIKE WHAT YOU SEE? Support Maimonides using online secure PayPal: Thank you for your generous support, all size contributions are helpful & make a difference!

“NO MORE POTATOES” That’s the title of a Pesach cookbook by Aviva Kanoff, a friend of MHDS alumna Avigael Bomzer, which features a broad spectrum of Kosher for Passover recipes - without potatoes! Thanks to Rebbetzin Bomzer for the tip.

MAIMONIDES 404 Partridge Street Albany NY 12208

REGULAR LEARNING, TOO In addition to all the exciting Pesach learning and special hands-on projects, regular everyday curriculum Judaic and General Studies learning goes on as usual in Maimonides classrooms. Here are two photos of students hard at work: (R) is working on Hebrew grammar in his 1st grade workbook in Morah Devorah’s class and (L) is working on her English Language Arts assignment in Mrs. Maher’s 4th grade. There’s lots to learn!

KAREN PLATT OBM Some of our HS girls knew Mrs. Platt of Troy from her cake decorating workshops at JGR and from visiting her during her illness which led to her untimely passing this week. They will remember her (and her tips!) when decorating cakes & icing cookies for Simchas.

MAZAL TOV AZRIEL and to the Laber family on his Bar-Mitzvah this weekend. Azriel is the last of the boys in 7th & 8th grade to become Bar-Mitzvah.

DEVORAH’S SONG, JACOB’S BLESSINGS JOY OF THE MITZVAH We couldn’t resist putting in a few more pictures of the Kindergarten Model Seder (see page 1) because they depict the children aglow with the joy of the Mitzvah. The picture on the right may have Yitzchak a little suspicious of Shmuly eyeing his Afikoman?

THE FOUR QUESTIONS POSTER Morah Devorah’s 1st grade students are each making their own “Mah Nishtanah” posters with their own illustrations of the 4 questions, in the order of their family’s custom.

Last Call! for “EL-BNAY” TORAH JOURNAL SUBMISSIONS Once again MHDS alumni are preparing a interesting and varied journal of Torah thoughts, inspiration and discussion. Hebrew and English submissions are both welcome. Please email: to submit your piece or if you have any questions.

PESACH KOSHER QUESTIONS? Call your Rabbi or the Vaad HaKashruth at: 489-1530 or email: The Vaad’s yellow Pesach booklet has lots of info (pick it up at Price Chopper Colonie etc).

Each week a different student can volunteer to write a few more sentences of this story, continuing where the earlier writer left off…

The Mystery of the Library File Part 2 …Tzvi was very embarrassed. His cheeks turned red hot, and he wished he would not have stolen the file from the library. After a few seconds of silence, his friend Yoel asked him, “What are you doing? You seem to be shivering, is everything OK?” (To be continued next week by a different student… will it be you?)

5th graders just finished learning this in the 5th chapter of Shoftim (Book of Judges). They are also moving along in Jacob’s Blessings to the Tribes, now at Chapter 50 in Breishis! This set of 12 Israeli stamps (<) each feature a phrase of the blessing that Jacob gave that tribe.

A BIRTH AND A TREATY 3rd graders with Rabbi Yossi are now studying Parshas Vayera (perek/chapter 21) about the birth of Yitzchak to Avraham and Sarah in their old age, and the chapter ends with a treaty that Avraham made with Avimelech, the King of Gerar. They study using the Chumash itself as well as a accompanying worksheet curriculum prepared by Morah Rochel.

TUCK EVERLASTING FILM After finishing reading the book, Ms. Gray’s 6th graders watched the film together in class and got to eat snack while they watched.

DUST BOWL & DEPRESSION Grades 7/8 watched PBS films of interviews with people who lived through the Dust-Bowl in the 1930’s as children and the effects it had on their families. They also watched interviews about people who lived through the Great Depression and how people lost all they had.

FINDING OLD JOURNALS Thanks to those who have come forward, we are narrowing the list of missing school journals, now only missing 1990-1992 and ‘94 and ‘96. If you have these school yearbook/ journals, call Rabbi Rubin 423-4103 or the school office 453-9363x1. Thanks!

OUT-OF-TOWN MAZAL TOVS The Yarmoves, formerly of Albany, and featured in last week’s MC, had a baby boy in Chicago. Zelda (Rieber) and Asaf Advocat recently had a baby girl. Some of our students know Zelda from summers at JGR (Jewish Girls Retreat) where she served as head-staff.

A WORM OF DIFFERENCE 2nd graders with Ms. Livingston are now doing a science unit on worms. They put worms in clear bags of soil and leaves. Each day they observe and record how the active worms slowly change their surrounding soil.

SCIENCE FICTION AS AN INTRO 7/8 graders with Dr. Sahay watched a pseudodocumentary animated film about “Darwin IV” an alien planet, with NASA scientists discussing and participating using hi-tech tools & computerized probes, research and discovery… to whet their appetite and broaden their horizons as an intro to their upcoming science unit of study and exploration.

FAMILY TRADITIONS PROJECT 7/8 just finished reading “The Giver” by Lois Lowry and are now doing a family research project (they need to each interview older family member), along with a Venn-Diagram, and they also need to invent a tradition, try it for a week, and summarize their experience.

PARENT FORMS NEEDED ASAP The school office sent home important paperwork about family financial information that is needed for the school to apply to certain grants and programs. It shouldn’t take too long to fill out. This is very important for the school to be able to provide certain programs and enrichment and these forms must be returned as soon as possible. If you did not receive this paperwork, please call the office 453-9363x1 or just stop in so it can be taken care of as soon as possible.


SHEMA VS. V’HAYA HS juxtaposed the two classic Torah portions that are recited 2x (or more) daily, examining their differences, and messages for us today.

HS HISTORY ESSAYS HS history class had a choice between DBQ (document based questions) essays on Mao vs. Deng (communist China) or do a thematic essay on the differences in leadership styles between Mao of China and Gandhi of India (hint: they were VERY different).

SONG OF DEVORAH Rabbi Laber’s Navi class finished perek 5 of Shoftim (Book of Judges) with the song of Devorah. The students made 3-D dioramas, comics, art-pages and other depictions of various aspects mentioned in the song.


Rabbi Rubin’s 7/8 Jewish history class learned about the Solveichik family of Rabbis and HS’ pre-Pesach Pizza Night was last night at scholars which dates back to the 1700’s and its “Nathan’s Kitchen” on 3.14, also known as Pi- founding patriarch Rabbi Chaim of Volozhin, Day. Thanks to those who pre-ordered for and then the Beis HaLevi and others, down to early 3:30 pickup, and those who ate-in or did today’s generation with Rabbi JB Solveichik of take-out later between 5-7pm. The new pizza Boston and YU - a visionary of American system was quick and efficient, and the sushi modern Orthodoxy, Rabbi Aaron Soloveichik and shoestring French-fries were yummy, too. of Brisk-Chicago and Rabbi Meir Soloveichik of Brisk-Jerusalem. Another Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik was briefly considered for the office of British Chief Rabbi, and addressed the recent Republican National Convention. The current President of Yale University is (<) Peter Salovey, also a Solveichik descendant. Rabbi Rubin’s final history class before Pesach will study a classic “shtikel” SEDER WORKBOOKS Reb Chaim (a Solveichik of pre-war 4th graders with Morah Devorah Leah are Europe famous for his analytical Rambam filling in workbooks of background, reasons, commentary) on his two Gedarim (conceptual and customs for the various steps of the Seder, ANDY WARHOL POP ART perspectives/legal categories) in the Rambam’s that students can use at their Seders. Each 6th grade art class with Mrs. Levin learned Hilchos Chametz u’Matzah. student is also encouraged to add in their about the unique pop art style of Andy family customs and interpretations to Warhol and after a series of improving their personalize their Haggadah experience! NANOTECH FIELD TRIP TODAY skill with face portraits, they did some artwork Middle School in his style, using pastels, watercolors, acrylic students are PESACH SONGS AT TEFILAH paint, and plastic sheeting. Each student did a spending much Since Purim, the boys davening group has repetitive horizontal series of 3 faces, in some been concluding their Tefilah with a different ways similar, yet in other ways quite different. of today (Friday) at CNSE/Nanotech, thanks to Mr. Ted Levin’s monthly Nano (science and Pesach song each day. Dayenu, LShana Haba, Their artwork may soon be on display at the math) enrichment course at Maimonides. VHee Sheomdah, Al Achas, Avadim Hayeenu, Bach Public Library on New Scotland Ave. Reports in next week’s “MC” newsletter… - even Mah Nishtana sung as a tune… 1st graders wrote a March poem on these sheets next to the lambs they made, and did a Spring-time illustration to go along with it. The lambs are also just in time for Pesach!


at Maimonides and in the Community 3/16: SHABBOS PROGRAM


10:45 to 11:30am, led by Chaya Andrusier. sponsor treat?

Taste fresh-baked Chametz Pizza two days after Pesach, Thursday evening 5-7pm at Nathan’s Kitchen at Maimonides. 3:30pm 3/16: RABBI REISMAN’S CLASS earlier take-out is available only by advanced Now begins 9:30pm on Sat Nights, screened orders to: at CBAJ. Rabbi Frand on Thursdays 9pm.



Center for Jewish Studies hosts NYU’s Prof Marion Kaplan (3 times National Book The Congressman will speak at Agudat Award winner) on “Extraordinary became Achim in Schen for the Federation’s Joint Ordinary - Jewish Life in Nazi Germany” Society event on “Major Domestic & Intl Challenges facing the US: 2013 & Beyond.” 7pm at UAlbany Performing Arts Center. Call 783-7800 for info, cost and RSVP.


3/17: ENYCAR AUTO SHOW ‘13 Madeleine Kunin was Vermont’s only 170 new vehicles! 11-5 at the Times Union Center. $7.50 admission, under 12 free.

3/21-22: PRE-PESACH MHDS SCHOOL SCHEDULE Half-days AM only, with 11:30am dismissal (send snack, no lunch) on Wed (3/21) and Thurs (3/22) in preparation for Pesach. High School has no school after this Friday (3/15). School resumes on Thursday (4/4) at 9am (davening class starts at 9am).

3/21: NISSAN 11 FARBRENGEN After Mincha (6:55)/Maariv at Shteeble.

3/23: SHABBOS HAGADOL Shabbos morning pre-Passover lectures:  Rabbi Rubin (Shomray Torah): “Should the father also ask the Questions? ”  Rabbi Lehrfield (CBAJ) “Is there room for Yosef at the Seder?”

3/25: EREV PESACH MORNING 8am Shachris at Maimonides (instead of Shteeble) followed by a First-Born Siyum by Rabbi Simon and a communal Chametz burning. Finish eating Chametz before 10:57am, finish burning by 11:59am.

3/28: CHOL HAMOED THURS This year (weather-permitting) Thursday seems to be the best day for an outing, because Friday is Erev Shabbos, and Sunday is already Erev YomTov for the last days. Is anyone up for a family-group trip? Ideas?

3/31: KIDS PESACH PROGRAM 11am in Ridgefield Park. Games, prizes, stories, Mitzvos.. Info? 522-8478.

Jewish and female governor and will speak for the Federation’s Womens Philanthropy event, 7pm at Nanotech South Auditorium. Cost is $20pp. Call 783-7800 x234.

4/23: PESACH SHEINI Matzah & Shmears at Lunch at school, in honor of “Pesach Sheini” the 2nd Passover.

4/28: LAG B’OMER DAY Stay tuned for special festivities! TBA…

COMMUNAL SEDERS AROUND TOWN If you are not planning a Seder of your own, many local families love having guests - or you can try one of these communal Seders: CBAJ (1st night) $40 adult/$36 child (members: $36 adult/$30 child) RSVP by 3/10: or 489-5819.  Shabbos House (2 nights) primarily for students, community please call to RSVP: 438-4227 /  Beth Israel Schen (2 nights) Members $32 non-members $38 Kids 5-12 $18 free under 5. RSVP by 3/20: 377-3700  Beth Tephilah Troy (2 nights) contact/ RSVP: 894-3491.  Bethlehem Chabad (1st night) Normanside Country Club $25 adult, kids $10, RSVP by 3/20.  Saratoga Chabad (2 nights) $18 adult, $10 child. 526-0773 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Or if interested in getting away for a stay-away holiday, check out the Laber’s Pesach Holiday Retreat at Ft. William Henry Hotel in Lake George. Call 727-9581 for cost and details.

MAIMONIDES SCHOOL & COMMUNITY (Nursery / Elementary / High School) 404 Partridge Street Albany NY 12208 (518) 453-9363/3434 Founded in 1980, Maimonides is chartered by the NYS Board of Regents and is a JF-NENY Beneficiary “A Beautiful Blend: Torah & Worldly Experience!”

New “Avner Gold” series (top left) $20 each; “Birkas HaChaim The Wonders of the Body” (big book) $25; plus a dozen softcover chapter books (grades 2-4) at $10 each.

SPONSOR THESE BOOKS FOR THE “ESTY LIBRARY” AT MAIMONIDES The recently purchased books pictured above will be placed in the “Esty Library” for student use once they are sponsored. They appeal to a variety of reading levels. Books can be sponsored and dedicated in honor of a special occasion or in memory of a loved one. Each sponsored book gets an inscription with the dedication info. The Library also accepts gently used older books as well, as long as they are in decent condition, but dedication stickers are reserved for new book purchases. As the “Esty Library” grows, we’re looking into the future possibility of a Library time for community. Soon we’ll need new bookshelves, too!

CLEANING UP THE HOUSE? If you come across decent stuff that you no longer need, our General Studies teachers may be able to sell it at their Spring-time Garage-Sale to benefit the year-end trip. Items can be brought into school to be stored at the sale site (at a private home). Limited pickups may be possible, please also call the school office ahead before bringing in larger items. Please, no large appliances and no TV’s. Last year this sale was very successful. Thanks!

LORENCE ALUMNI TORAH DEDICATION This past Sunday, the 4th local Torah sponsored by Bruce Lorence was completed at the UAlbany Alumni House, by followed by a procession to and Hakafot dancing at Shabbos House, in conjunction with Moshe Rubin’s Bar-Mitzvah, with alumni, students, family and community. This Torah commemorates 40 years since Bruce’s graduation from UAlbany, and memorializes his paternal great-grandparents, Jacob Lorence and Mary Ringler Lorence, 1916 founders of the Bnai Israel Williamsburg synagogue. Next week will be a shorter school week, perhaps there will be room in “MC” for more photos.

Maimonides Community  

Maimonides Community