July 21, 2024
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July 21, 2024
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JKHA Middle School Learns the Importance of Speaking Hebrew

The JKHA middle school held a special program to kick off their Hebrew language learning for the year. A series of speakers were brought in to generate excitement for the year ahead in Hebrew class and for students to obtain a clearer sense of the importance of learning Hebrew.

A variety of JKHA/RKYHS alumni and one administrator came to school to share their view on “chashivut ha’Ivrit.” Melyssa Mandelbaum, JKHA ‘09/RKYHS ‘13, described how at summer camp she befriended a camper from France, and they forged their relationship through knowing the common language of Hebrew. Mandelbaum and other speakers reiterated that no matter where one is in the world, one can connect with fellow Jews through Hebrew. She spoke of how rather than getting caught up in using the proper “dikduk” or grammar, step out of your comfort zone and just keep speaking—speak to your friends, speak to your teachers (who will appreciate your efforts) and the more you speak, the grammar will come.

Eitan Shamsian, JKHA ‘11/RKYHS ‘15, impressed upon the students that while they are in school is the ideal time to learn the language, because after leaving school the opportunity to learn Hebrew is not as accessible. This thought was echoed by Jon Liebman, JKHA 07/RKYHS ‘11, who spoke to students remotely from Israel. Liebman lives in Israel and served in the IDF. He conveyed to students how much more of a challenge he faced in Israel and the army since he hadn’t focused enough on his Hebrew while a student and he stressed to students that they should put in the effort now while they are in school; that they will appreciate it down the line. Mr. Daniel Israeli, COO of JKHA and RKYHS added that students’ tefillot will become more meaningful the more they understand the words of what they say every day.

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