I am grateful to be part of a community and school that cares deeply about tikkun olam and generosity. Your children, our youngest citizens, have been involved in many acts of tikkun olam – repairing the world – already this year.
When we see children as competent, we understand that they are not only preparing or learning how to see themselves as socially responsible adults. Rather, we seek to place our young citizens in relevant contexts which show them that they are already socially responsible and capable of making an impact on their world.
As we head into Thanksgiving weekend, I want to share with you some of the ways in which our young students are already helping to create a more just world.
Our students helped drop off new books in September for the Beth Yeshurun Day School in Houston, TX. Our young citizens helped re-stock the school’s library after it was wiped out by Hurricane Harvey.
In October, our students dropped off diapers and baby supplies in the Common Space, which were then brought to a NYFD firehouse and shipped to Puerto Rico. Families struggling to keep up in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria received these much needed supplies.
In November, our Parents Association Tikkun Olam day had our youngest citizens making hundreds of sun-butter and jelly sandwiches, which were then brought to NY Common Pantry just cross town. The sandwiches helped provide lunch for many New Yorkers who would have otherwise gone without lunch.
This week, our PreK students baked dessert for a pre-Thanksgiving meal held at the B’nei Jeshurun/St Paul homeless shelter, providing a sweet treat to top off a Thanksgiving feast for those who use the shelter.
This morning, the young citizens in Classroom 3 hand-delivered a home-baked pie to the firefighters in our neighborhood fire house to say thank you for their hard work.
Next month, you can help your child contribute again. Our “Mitten Menorah” in the Common Space will collect gloves and mittens to be donated to a local shelter; you can sign up for “Families for Families” to donate holiday gifts and warm clothes to families in need (see your Daily Reflections for details on signing up).
We at the nursery school are grateful for all that we have, and committed to acting in socially responsible ways to share with those around us. As you spend time with your child over the holiday weekend, I encourage you to talk with them about not only what they are grateful for but also how they can do tikkun olam to make others happy and the world just a little bit more fair.
Please also take a look at this Thanksgiving Haggadah, prepared by Rabbi Joy Levitt, CEO of JCC Manhattan. I will be bringing printed copies to my sister's for the holiday meal.