Dear RPRY Community,
I have often heard it said that our Torah is unique: unlike in other disciplines such as science or literature, nine-year-olds and ninety-nine-year-olds all learn from the same Chumash.
While it is true that a first grader learning about place value uses a different math book than a twelfth grader studying calculus, it is also true that the Chumash that our second graders receive does not have all of the meforshim of a Mikraot Gedolot. Nevertheless, this aphorism is deeply true – the same Torah speaks to all of us, each on his or her own level.
I was struck by this idea this week as I thought about how RPRY approaches the parsha. For parshat Vayera, the two- and three-year-olds made welcome mats for their rooms, inspired by the hachnasat orchim, hospitality, of Avraham and Sarah. In the four-year-old classes, they put up a tent in the classroom so they could experience the story for themselves. I worked with eighth graders Nachi Scheiner and Zevi Klein on their Dvar Torah (see below); the ideas that they explored from this parsha are quite sophisticated!
Our fourth graders learned this week about the concept of emor me’at va’aseh harbeh, that we should say a little but do a lot, and our seventh graders had a discussion about the nature of Avraham Avinu’s ten tests. From pre-nursery through eighth grade, the messages and lessons of the parsha come alive each week at RPRY.
Rabbi Daniel Loew
Head of School