Hillel Happenings 
Brought to you by Hillel Academy of Pittsburgh  
Outside of Hillel

Hillel Academy

of Pittsburgh


5685 Beacon Street

Pittsburgh, PA


P: (412) 521-8131

F: (412) 521-5150




May 6, 2011


2 Iyyar 5771


Candle Lighting: 8:01 pm


Havdalah: 9:01 pm


 Parshat Emor

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In This Issue
Eis On Jewish History
Chizuk Corner
Syntactical Superheroes
Did You Know
Hillel Gear Spring Line
Food Zone
Mazel Tov
Around Town
Help Hillel by Shopping
Awesome Kippot Available
Mordy Brown Catering
Dvar Torah
The Hillel Minute
3rd Grade Solar System
M&M Mystery
Hockey at Hillel Academy
A Minute To Win It
JV Heat
Epic Book Drive
Coming to America and Hillel Academy
Interview with Ms. Glazer
Hillel Grid
Hillel Gear Spotted Here
Hillel Academy Video

Dvar Torah


Elisheva Rosenberg

Do you have a minute? Of course you do. Well, thanks to Hillel Academy fourth grader, Elisheva Rosenberg, your next minute is going to be one filled with Torah. Read this week's Dvar Torah to guarantee yourself a better day. 

Eis on

Jewish History


It is customary not to hold weddings during the Omer period to mark the tragic deaths of the 24,000 students of R. Akiva, which occurred c. 150 CE. 
When large numbers of Jews were massacred during the First Crusade in 1096, the restriction on haircuts was added. The custom of not listening to music is of more recent origin.

Want more Jewish History?

 Email Rabbi Eisen at 

Chizuk Corner


Through the Hillel Happenings, we try to provide our readers with a sense of the exciting, engaging, and meaningful work that happens at Hillel Academy. Chizuk, which is Hebrew for strength, is vital to Hillel Academy. This section, thanks to the weekly insights of Rabbi Brodie, is intended to give our readers a little extra strength. Click here to send us your feedback.   


Pesach, Zman Cheirusainu, the time of our freedom, has passed. Bnei Yisrael (the Children of Israel) became free to think and act for themselves on what the Almighty truly wants from each person. Bnei Yisrael decided to slaughter the lamb that they had previously worshiped. With this act, they reaffirmed their commitment to serving Hashem. 
Each Pesach, each one of us is given the opportunity to free ourselves of previous imperfections. Let us move forward with this chance to become better people.


Want more chizuk? Email Rabbi Brodie at [email protected]

Syntactical Superheroes

The great minds behind Hillel Academy's exemplary English Department would like you to know:

Plural form of Hyphenated Compound Words

Students often wonder is it daughter-in-laws or daughters-in-law?
It's tricky to know where to add the -s in a hyphenated word.

The easy rule is that you should add the -s to the most significant word in the hyphenated word, which is generally the noun. 
This rule also applies to all compound words, included those that are not hyphenated.

Here are some examples:


For more on good grammar, please email [email protected] or [email protected]

Teacher Feature


 Nike Shoes 


Ms. Glazer just purchased a flashy new pair of Nike shoes. Reb Shaw was once asked to be in a Nike commercial. To find out more about Hillel Academy's talented teachers and staff, please read this week's interview.  

Hillel Academy in the News


Hillel Students in the Library  

Last week, Hillel Academy 10th Grader, Sara Nimchinsky, authored an article about students and technology in The Jewish Chronicle. Click "Hillel Academy students are the best" to see the article. 

Did You Know?   


This week, two new programs began at Hillel Academy: Middle School Girls Hiking Club and Intramural Hockey. 

New Spring Line of Hillel Gear Available
Shira Day Camp


Yay! An extra week of day camp! Shira Day Camp is adding the week of June 27th - July 1st, making 7 weeks of awesomeness!!
There's only a few days left to vote on a t-shirt color on the SDC blog:


What was your favorite part of Shira Day Camp 2010?

Rachel Luzer - Color War!

Rachel Cohen - Balloon day!

Elisheva Unger - Color War!

Chana Kaminsky - Reily's Summer Seat Farm!

Nechama Rodkin - Kennywood!

Elisheva Rosenberg - Swimming!

More Reminders  


U turns in front of the building are a No No and potentially very dangerous. 

Help Hillel  


Please donate new items to Hillel Academy's Silent Auction. It is never too early to donate, and now is a great time to get it out of your house.  Please bring your tax deductible donations to Hillel Academy. 

Don't have the time, or need an item picked up in the Pittsburgh area?  Please contact Aviva Kelsey at 412-421-5589.  Thank you in advance for your support!
Food Zone

May Menu

May Order Form
Quick Links
Mazel Tov

Rabbi Yisroel and Mrs. Yardena Smith on the birth of a son

Dr. Joel and Dr. Tova Weinberg on the birth of a granddaughter

Mr. Josh and Mrs. Julia Weinberg on the birth of a daughter

Dr. Joel and Dr. Tova Weinberg on the birth of a grandson

Mr. Daniel and Mrs. Tamar (Weinberg) Kahn on the birth of a son

 Would you like to share something with the Hillel Academy family? 

If so, please email us at 

Around Town  

Mr. Sid Silverman, a long time Hillel Academy volunteer, will be honored together with his wife, Gerry, at the Poale Zedeck Annual Dinner. Besides reading to Pre-K students once a week, Mr. Silverman brings the children treats for Rosh Chodesh and Yom Tov.

 If you would like to place an ad in the journal to be presented at the dinner, please contact Poale Zedeck at

412-421-9786 or [email protected] or Cynthia Abrams at 412-421-9017.


Girls Oneg at PZ

Come join us for an hour of Shabbos afternoon fun! Oneg is for girls in Kindergarten through 8th grade at PZ from 3:15 pm to 4:15 pm. Can't wait to see you there!


Snif this Shabbat, 4:30-5:30 @ Shaare Torah.

Annual Community-wide Yom Hazkiron Tekes/Yom Haatzmaut Carnival!!!

Monday May 9, 7:30, at Shaare Torah.

Call or email us at [email protected] to pre-order T-shirts for a reduced price.


Interested in attending Shira Day Camp this summer? 

If so, click "camp" for an application.

Check out Shira Day Camp's awesome blog

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Hillel Happenings 

Who Wants an Awesome Kippah?


Hillel Academy Yarmulke


Have you seen the new Hillel Academy


If you want one click "I want an awesome kippah" or 

email Reb Shaw at [email protected].

Mordy Brown Catering

Every Thursday night, Mordy Brown Catering will be selling pizza for $16.00 a pie.
$1.00 of each sale will be donated to Hillel Academy.
Help support our school!

Click here for a menu and more details.

Hillel Academy
of Pittsburgh
Administration and Staff

Mr. Daniel J. Kraut
Chief Executive Officer
[email protected]

Rabbi Avrumi Sacks
Principal and Education Director
[email protected]

Mrs. Elky Langer
Assistant Principal GHS
[email protected]

Rabbi Sam Weinberg
Assistant Principal BHS
[email protected]

Rabbi Dov Nimchinsky
Judaic Studies Coordinator Elementary/Middle School 

[email protected]


Mrs. Deborah Oz-Halbritter
General Studies Coordinator Elementary/Middle School
[email protected]

Mrs. Yikara Levari
Administrator and Student Activities Coordinator [email protected]

Mrs. Phyllis Harris
Director of Support Services [email protected]

Mrs. Selma Aronson
Executive Administrator
[email protected]

Ms. Hadar Glazer
Administrative Assistant
[email protected]

Mrs. Adina Shayowitz
Administrative Assistant
[email protected]

Ms. Sarah Hartman
Finance Manager
[email protected]

Mr. Adam Reinherz
Director of Community Relations
[email protected]  

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Dvar Torah


Elisheva Rosenberg - 4th Grade
Kul Ish Asher Yikrov (Any man....That will come) 
Parshas Emor, Perek 22, Pasuk 3

What does the above pasuk mean? Hashem said, "Say to them: Throughout your generations, any man from among any of your offspring who shall come near the holies [that B'nai Yisroel (the Children of Israel) has sanctified to Hashem] while he is impure, that person shall be cut off from Me, I am Hashem."

What do we learn from this pasuk? We learn that even though there is no Beis Hamikdash (Holy Temple), we can still be cut off from Hashem by straying from the path of Torah. This can happen by not listening to the rabbis of our generation.  At Hillel Academy, we are instilled with the value of staying on the proper path. Have a great Shabbos!


The Hillel Minute

With each section of the Hillel Happenings, we try to convey the excitement and energy that fills the classrooms and hallways of Hillel Academy. While we all know that Hillel Academy is the greatest school in the world, there are certain aspects of Hillel Academy that are largely unknown. In this section, titled "The Hillel Minute," we present a minute long video dedicated to a particular aspect of Hillel Academy. The objective of "The Hillel Minute" is to provide our readers/viewers an opportunity to enjoyably learn more about one component of Hillel Academy. If you would like to see something featured in an upcoming "Hillel Minute," please email [email protected] . 

Hillel Minute (English).wmv


Click above to learn more about English at 

Hillel Academy

Watch them here or visit us online at www.hillelpgh.org 



Please remember that if your normal dismissal arrangements change, please notify the office by noon of that day, by phone or email.

Quilting Teaches Teamwork and America  


Ms. Oz - [email protected] 


The fourth grade girls worked on a special project during their weekly activity periods, a Symbols of America quilt. The girls researched icons of America using their textbook and Internet sites to determine which symbols best represented the USA. They then drew each symbol, working diligently for many weeks to complete the drawings. Next, the girls had to decide how to arrange the symbols on their quilt, which led to some interesting discussions: should they be placed according to how famous they are, alphabetically, or according to the artists' discretion to achieve the 'prettiest' quilt? The latter was finally the decision, and the girls laid out the quilt and placed their drawings accordingly. Finally, the girls traced huge letters to make a title for the quilt and shaded in some of the white background in red, white, and blue to complete their masterpiece, which may be viewed in the main hallway. Please take a moment to stop by and see their work of art!

Quilt Picture

Proud Hillel Academy students salute freedom and America with a beautiful quilt.

M&M Mystery 

Ms. Morris - [email protected] and 
Mr. Kingman - [email protected]

Ms. Morris and Mr. Kingman have an M&M mystery. Librarians love research and Ms. Morris loves M&M's. Put those together and she began to wonder how many M&M's are in a 1.69 oz. bag, what would be the most common and least common color included, and how many total M&M's would there be? Following Mr. Kingman's 7th grade's study of probability, via a fascinating lesson on the Smartboard, she consulted with him on this puzzle. After examining 4 bags, the answers were found. Can anyone guess? The 4 bags contained an average of 56 M& M's. How many are in Bag #5?


Ms. Morris and Mr. Kingman

Does this mean an end to the no food in the library policy?



Click here to read the entire  

Hillel Happenings


Intramural Hockey at Hillel Academy

This past Tuesday, Hillel Academy's Athletic Department kicked off an exciting new program. With the help of Mr. Peters, the Boys (grades 4-8) Intramural Floor Hockey League was born. Four teams of 21 boys signed up for this inaugural league. Three eighth grade captains, Baruch Nemoy, Yakov Posin, and Daniel Nimchinsky, together with 7th grade captain Ben Ungar, held a draft before Pesach break. The teams were then announced to the eagerly waiting students in the lunchroom, with each name being met by cheers from the boys. The regular season is three weeks long with playoffs beginning at the end of May. The first week of play began with the Bobcats (Ben Ungar's team) versus the Fountain of Youth (Baruch Nemoy's team). The Bobcats prevailed in the opening game with a commanding win, 10-3. Moshe Dovid Luzer (5th grade) netted the first three goals of the season with his unstoppable wrist shot. The second game of the season saw the Fairy Princesses against the Thunderbolts. Thanks to Daniel Nimchisnky's goal keeping abilities and Akiva Skaist's (6th grade) eight goals, the Fairy Princesses held off a late staged comeback by Efraim Marizon (4th grade) to win 10-5. All four teams excitedly look forward to week two of the season, stayed tuned!

Intramural Hockey

Mr. Peters is joined by members of the Hillel Academy Intramural Hockey League.

A Minute To Win It 

Mrs. Stanley - [email protected]

Recently, we began doing "A Minute To Win It" games in Physical Education classes as a way to transition from our other sports and build excitement at the same time. These games add a great level of unpredictability. Each game offers new twists. During the games, the students use hand eye coordination, sportsmanship, locomotor skillls, agility, and teamwork. The students love the games, as they add a new "twist" to Physical Education class!


Minute to Win it

Mrs. Stanley is seen checking a pedometer in the Hillel Academy Gymnasium.

JV Heat Scorch the Competition 

Rabbi Weinberg - [email protected]

Led by head coach Ira Karoll, and his dedicated colleague, David Jacobson, the Hillel Heat JV team rolled into the playoffs with a 4-3 record. The team, led by all star center Steven Kohane, finished the season strong with an overtime victory over former hosts, Beth Shalom. All season long, the JV Heat prided themselves on stellar defense, the strong interior passing of the Biton brothers, and long range shooting of their trio of guards: Josh Brent, Andy Joshowitz, and Binyamin Skaist. I am especially proud of this group since they have spent the season competing against teams comprised of mostly Juniors and Seniors. 


Click here to read the entire  

Hillel Happenings


Epic Book Drive

Ms. Morris - [email protected]

Hillel Academy has joined EPIC BOOK DRIVE in its endeavor to restock New Orleans School Libraries destroyed in Hurricane Katrina. We hope with your help to collect 50 boxes of books by May 15, 2011. Books must be suitable for age 12 and above. Please do not send in encyclopedias. The school donating the most boxes will receive $1000 for its school library.   

Moshe Luzer in the Library

Hillel Academy fifth grader Moshe Luzer is seen in the beautiful 

Hillel Academy Library creating a poster for the Epic Book Drive.

Ms. Morris would like you to know that the Hillel Academy Library Wish List 

is now online:


Click here for a link to our Pinsker's Wish List


Click here for a link to our Amazon.com Wish List  


Bonnie Morris 



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Coming to America with the Third Grade 


Mrs. Lederer - [email protected] 


The Third Grade has been studying about immigration in social studies. This unit has enabled us to discuss where and why people came to America. We learned that people formed communities according to their own cultures. Many ships from Europe arrived at Ellis Island in New York Harbor. Large numbers of immigrants from Asia arrived at Angel Island in San Francisco Bay. Other immigrants entered through other cities such as Boston Massachusetts; Galveston, Texas; and New Orleans, Louisiana. Other immigrants came from Ireland, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Canada, Norway/Sweden, Italy, Austria/Hungary, Russia and many more places during the early 1800's to the early 1900's. Every student filled out a family tree which explored where they, their parents, grandparents, and great grandparents were born. Then, while utilizing our large maps hanging in the classroom, each child marked where their ancestors were born. We found that the students and many of their parents were born in and around Pittsburgh or New York, New Jersey, Ohio, and a few from Texas, and California. We had parents from Canada, England, and South Africa. As the children traced their ancestry back to their great grandparents, we discovered that many came from Hungary, Serbia, Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, the Ukraine, Lithuania, and Romania. The children placed paper markers on the different countries. It was interesting to see the clusters of immigrants from Europe that came to America looking for freedom from persecution. This was an interesting unit and an exciting project. Thank you to everyone for your support.

Mrs. Lederer

Mrs. Lederer and members of the Hillel Academy third grade demonstrate where their families originate from.


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Interview with Ms. Glazer


Over Pesach break, an overwhelming number of readers requested that Reb Shaw interview Ms. Glazer. Per your request, this week, Reb Shaw sat down with Ms. Glazer for a candid look at diverse matters pertaining to Hillel Academy, self-defense, and French cuisine. For the benefit of our readers, excerpts of this conversation have been reproduced below. 


Reb Shaw: How long have you been working at Hillel Academy? 

Ms. Glazer: This will be my seventh year. I started working at Hillel in my eleventh grade during high school.

Reb Shaw: You are currently enrolled in Chatham University; what is your major? 

Ms. Glazer: I am majoring in Business Management.

Reb Shaw
: Much of your workday is spent at the command center in the Hillel Academy Lobby. What's your feeling on the new seating location? 

Ms. Glazer: Well, I miss being in the main office with Mrs. Aronson, but its not bad being in the Lobby. The only thing I wish that we had in the Lobby was air conditioning.

Reb Shaw
: Technically, after the glass doors, you are Hillel Academy's first line of defense. How have you prepared for that? 

Ms. Glazer: Well, the administrators have not really discussed that with me, but I do have scissors and a stapler if anyone tries to get past me.

Reb ShawOver the average day, how many teachers ask for markers?

Ms. GlazerToo many to count!   

Reb Shaw: You recently returned from a trip to France - the center of gastronomic delight. Which French culinary masterpiece would you like to see on Chef Brown's next menu: Blanquette de veau (French veal ragout) or Aligot (mashed potatoes blended with young Tomme cheese)? 

Ms. Glazer: Chef Brown is an awesome cook, but I would have to go with the Aligot. I am not a huge fan of veal.  

Reb Shaw: Mrs. Aronson has got, "Shalom, Hillel Academy," when she answers the phone. What's your catchphrase? 

Ms. Glazer: "Shalom, Hillel Academy." I learned from the best!

Reb Shaw: Squirrel Hill Trivia (because our readers love this stuff): What are the names of the movie theaters that are in Squirrel Hill?  

Ms. Glazer: The Manor Theatre is the only one still in business. The one on Forward closed down.

Reb Shaw: Summertime is the season for outdoor concerts and music festivals. Do I have a better chance of doing backup for the Maccabeats or opening up for Shwekey? 

Ms. Glazer: In my opinion, you could sing for anyone. But I think opening up for Shwekey would bring more attention to your awesomeness!

Reb Shaw: I am really trying to build up the athletic opportunities here at school, what do you wish was available when you attended Hillel Academy? 

Ms. Glazer: I would have really enjoyed being on a basketball team. The sports that we played during high school were dodge ball or elimination. I would have enjoyed more sports.

Hadar Glazer

Ms. Glazer is seen in the newly renovated Hillel Academy Lobby.


The Hillel Grid

This week, The Hillel Happenings staff sat down with students from Hillel Academy of Pittsburgh (who are of course the brightest, wittiest, talented students in the world). Take a look at what our students have to say. 

Students in the Mix

What are your summer plans?

What is your greatest accomplishment at Hillel Academy?

What's your favorite  book?

Efraim Marizan
I am hoping to go visit my mother during the first month and Boys Zone during the second monthMy success in Mishna class over the past two years Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher
by Bruce Coville
Yael Itskowitz
I am going to Camp Dina in Stroudsberg, PA. and then on a family trip to D.C. Completing the climbing wallAnything that J.K. Rowling wrote
Leora Kelsey
Lots of stuff...Graduating 3rd grade and getting Reb Shaw in 4th gradeI don't have one, I like so many.
Batsheva Langer
Going to Camp Machaneinu in the CatskillsWriting a creative writing essay for Mrs. TiptonThe Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
Mendy Morgan
Going to Camp Gan IzzyMathWizard of Oz - the series
Leora Nimchinsky
I am going to sleep and work on the computerLearning Navi (Shoftim)  Holes by Louis Sachar
Noah Luzer
Going to Gan Izzy and playing summer baseballDissecting a wormStuart Little by E.B. White

 Do you want to see someone/something featured in an upcoming grid? Email The Hillel Happenings at [email protected] and let us know.
Hillel Gear Spotted Here

On a recent trip to Color Me Mine, Shira Itskowitz dressed for success in a stylish Hillel Academy sweatshirt. Way to go Aviva! 
Aviva Itskowitz

According to Hillel Happenings researchers, wearing Hillel Academy gear to Color Me Mine virtually guarantees that whatever is being created will end up looking amazing.

  Hey, Hillel Happenings readers, we all know that Hillel nation extends well beyond Squirrel Hill. So here's our chance to prove it. Send a picture of yourself in Hillel gear (uniform, t-shirt, etc.) to [email protected], and each week we'll select the best picture for inclusion in the Hillel Happenings.

Hillel Academy Pittsburgh 2010

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