June 16, 2024
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June 16, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

A meaningful week at The Idea School began with a virtual Yom HaShoah program in which students looked at three different stories from the Holocaust: Paul and Hedy Strnad, who perished despite Paul’s attempt to get the couple out of Europe by sending his wife’s dress designs to his cousin in Milwaukee; Fashion designer Coco Chanel’s collaboration with and missions for the Nazis and discussing why the House of Chanel hasn’t taken more responsibility for its founder’s heinous action;Suzanne Spaak, who, like Chanel, lived in France in a state of wealth and privilege but who immediately joined the opposition to fight against the Nazis. In virtual breakout rooms, students and faculty reflected on these stories and discussed what makes someone take action to fight injustice.

On Yom Hazikaron, students recognized Israel’s fallen soldiers in a special tribute to those who were olim, chose to move to Israel and perished in service to the country. They focused on the life of lone soldier, Max Steinberg, an American, who was inspired to make aliyah and join the IDF. Steinberg fell during Operation Protective Edge in Gaza, and more than 30,000 attended the funeral of this lone soldier. His parents, who had never been to Israel before, decided they would bury their son there. Students then reflected on Steinberg’s choice and personally reflected on their own decision process of what may inspire them to choose a path that puts others before oneself.

Continuing on the theme from Yom Hazikaron, Yom Ha’atzmaut began with watching the documentary “Above and Beyond,” about American Air Force pilots who volunteered to fly for the new Israeli state in the 1948 War of Independence. The programming continued with Yom Ha’atzmaut celebrations including hummus making, pickling,and Hebrew letter arts.

Finally, students shared their Yom HaShoah, Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut programs with seniors from the JCC through the Better Together program.

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