Weaving Values of Tikun Olam (Repair of the World) into Every Aspect of the School Experience.
- Our middle school students wrote letters to the students who were affected by the school shooting at Marshall County High School in Kentucky, after hearing about that tragedy.
- And coming up this month, our whole school community will be involved in demonstrating the mitzvot of Purim. In addition to hearing the Megillah, they will be making and distributing Mishloach Manot. In response to the mitzvah of mishloach levyonim, gifts to the financially struggling, we will contribute to the ARK.
Boston University’s Center for Character Development and Social Responsibility has engaged in extensive research on the importance of integrating character development and social responsibility into school curriculum. In defining Ethical Leadership, they write, “Ethical Leadership is the critical appropriation and embodiment of traditions that have shaped the character and shared meaning of a people. Ethical Leaders, therefore, are leaders whose characters have been shaped by the wisdom, habits and practices of particular traditions.”
In a day and age when ethical leadership seems at an all time low and social responsibility needs bolstering, Jewish tradition keeps us grounded and focused on fostering these values.
The great Jewish musical composer and performer Debbie Friedman, z'l took the words of our great sage Rabbi Hillel and penned a beautiful song which really speaks to why we teach and do what we do at Chicago Jewish Day School. Enjoy the lyrics below and stay warm and have a wonderful, wintery, snowy, Shabbat.
Im ein a-ni li mi li?
If I am not for myself, who will be for me?
Uch-she-a-ni l’atz-mi mah a-ni?
If I am only for myself, what am I?
V’im lo ach-shav ei-ma-tai?
And (if not now), when?
Hillel was a Rabbi and he taught us what to do.
The first part of his lesson said you must be true to you.
You have to love yourself if you expect that others should.
Having self-respect is something special, something good.
Myself is very special, it’s the place I have to start.
But Hillel said we must make room for others in our heart.
Yes, love yourself but care and share – don’t lock the others out.
Caring for yourself and others is what life is all about.
Life is short, the time flies by and just before you know.
Today becomes last week and then a long, long time ago.
Hillel said do what you must – act now, today, don’t wait.
Decide what is important – do it now, it’s not too late.
Ms. J (Judy)