Yom HaShoah, Yom HaZaikaron and Yom Ha’Atzmaut at Hillel Torah

post by Chaia Miller | May 23, 2019

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MAY 16, 2019 – On Yom HaZikaron, we remembered those who lost their lives in the struggle that led to the establishment of the State of Israel, and all military and civilian people who were killed while in active duty in Israel’s armed forces or in terrorist attacks. Our Bnot Sherut HT 2018-19 created a Cheder Zikaron – a memorial room where students in grade 4-8 went for a session to reflect upon and honor the fallen Israelis.

Hillel Torah commemorated Yom Hashoah with a beautiful tribute led by our 5th graders in memory of the six million Jews who died al kiddush Hashem during the Holocaust, and in honor of those who survived. Students reenacted stories from the history of the Jews of Hungary, focusing on the brave actions of Raoul Wallenberg. They also highlighted the story of the children of Theresienstadt through brief skits and videos. The testimonies of Aaron Elster, who passed away last year, and Sheila Gerber, survivors who shared their stories with Hillel Torah 8th graders as part of the Names, Not Numbers © Holocaust documentary, helped make this history come alive. For the remainder of the day, 8th graders took shifts sitting next to the six memorial candles that were lit at the end of the ceremony. Students read through the names of those who perished and recited Tehillim in their memories.

Yom Ha’Atzmaut at Hillel Torah began with the Middle School gathering for an inspiring tefillah chagigit, followed by an incredible tekes led by our very own 8th graders. The tekes, “Israel@71 – We Are On The Map!” took us on a journey with Herzl and Ben Gurion through some of Israel’s amazing accomplishments. Peppered with songs, danced with humor – the 8th graders inspired all of us and set the tone for the day. We were honored to host Ariella Rada, Israeli Consul for Academia and Community Affairs in the Midwest and Nadav Savaya, Midwest Director of Israeli-American Council (IAC). A special thank you to the Robinson families for sponsoring our Yom Ha’Atzmaut celebration as part of the Sheldon, z”l and Freda Robinson Israel Studies Program endowment. Throughout the day, students participated in creative, interactive and multi-sensory Israel-themed round robin activities including trips to Machane Yehuda, Israel trivia and more. The grades 3-6 activities were planned and led by our very own 7th graders!