Posts by SINAI Staff

By Dena Mayerfeld for The Jewish Link on Feb 21, 2019
Ready for camping! Enter for excitement! Intelligent! Really Excellent and Incredibly Interesting and Intriguing! These were just some of the sentiments generated by my students about our January 15 trip to the REI store on Forest Avenue, about a ten minute drive from SINAI at RYNJ. REI—Recreational Equipment Inc.—sells high-end camping gear and equipment in stores around the country and on their website, including everything you would need to spend “a week in the woods.” The SINAI at RYNJ middle school boys were reading “A Week in the Woods”...
By Chaim Sussman, former SINAI Schools teacher on Jan 8, 2019
A few days ago my wife and I celebrated the bris of our son.  We named him Shmuel Tzvi in memory of someone who had a big impact on my life. Tzvi was the middle name of Naftali Tzvi Hakohen, Nathaniel Cohen z”l. Nathaniel was the first student I worked with after I graduated college, in my first job at SINAI Schools….and at the risk of sounding corny and cliche, I can guarantee you that I learned much more from him than he ever learned from me. Nathaniel was a big Mets fan, and as seems to often be the case in my life, that leads to an instant connection! I distinctly remember a...
By Chana Shestack and Kayla Silow-Carroll in The Jewish Link on Dec 17, 2018
When Ilana Picker, one of the head teachers at SINAI’s Karasick Shalem High School at Ma’ayanot, heard about the upcoming Veterans Day Hero 5K Run at Bergen Community College, she knew immediately that the experience would be perfect for her SINAI students. SINAI at Ma’ayanot offers a functional academic high school program designed to prepare students with intellectual and developmental disabilities for rich and productive adult lives. The 5K run was an opportunity to combine adaptive physical education with personal goal-setting and inclusion in the broader local community.  ​​Mrs....
By Frada Stone for The Jewish Link on Jun 18, 2018
Consider the following scenarios: Debbie is an academically challenged 15-year-old who, after suffering through negative experiences in two different elementary and middle schools, has now started her freshman year of high school. Debbie struggles with self-confidence. She is capable of achieving at a level far greater than she demonstrates, and her teachers are looking for ways to motivate her to put more effort into her studies so that she can reach her potential, but the casualty of the struggles of her past has been her bright vision of the future. The consensus is that Debbie is in a...
By Dena Mayerfeld on May 24, 2018
Sometimes, an individual can have a tremendous impact on the collective strength of his or her community. This was demonstrated recently at SINAI Schools at RYNJ, when Erika Sauerhoff, a child Holocaust survivor, spoke to SINAI’s middle school students about her experiences and reflections pertaining to the Holocaust. One of the teachers at SINAI at RYNJ is a fellow congregant of Sauerhoff’s at Congregation Adath Israel in Hillside. She seized the opportunity and recruited Erika to address her students as part of their observance of Yom HaShoah. As with each of SINAI’s schools, the...
By Jewish Link NJ Staff on May 23, 2018
On Tuesday May 1, SINAI students, friends and family gathered at The Avenue in Teaneck for the sixth annual Unique Inspirations Art Show sponsored by BearGivers. BearGivers is a nonprofit organization led by Chairman and Founder Joseph Sprung and President Diane Lempert, dedicated to creating an environment where children who face challenges are empowered to bring happiness to others through acts of generosity and giving. In 2012, Steven and Laura Paley established the Paley-Mironov Art Therapy program at SINAI Schools in honor of their parents, Selma and David Mironov, a”h, and Florence...
By Jordan Silvestri, Director, Karasick Shalem High School at Heichal Hatorah on Mar 19, 2018
As part of SINAI's year-long Core Leadership program partnership with Yeshivat HaKotel, I was recently privileged to present a webinar for the HaKotel students in Israel on leadership. We discussed four key elements of leadership for the students to incorporate into their educational lexicon: Being Personal, Having Self-Awareness, and being Selfless and Compassionate. These elements are some of the key ideas that make up effective leaders, and the leadership core of SINAI Schools.  Leadership is oftentimes incorrectly correlated to management. Management refers to the idea...
By Sam Fishman on Dec 19, 2017
When I was a younger man, and the father of a small child with special needs, I found that there were certain prayers that I said with more “kavanah” – deeper intention and feeling.    One of those prayers was “Birkat Hachodesh,” the prayer said on the Sabbath before the beginning of each new month, in which we ask God that the upcoming month should bring blessings -- and all good things.     I remember standing in the synagogue with my young son beside me.  My SINAI child.  I would put my arm around his shoulder, draping my tallit – my prayer shawl...
By Abigail Hepner Gross, Director of Communications on Jul 6, 2017
La Jolla, CA – SINAI Schools has won multiple prestigious Awards of Excellence from The Accolade Global Film Competition and The Best Shorts Competition for their short documentary, Jacob’s Footprints.  Jacob’s Footprints premiered at SINAI’s annual benefit dinner in February, 2017.  It tells the uplifting story of SINAI student Jacob Adler and his parents, Hillel and Debby.  Jacob, who has cerebral palsy, has inspired countless individuals with his courage, optimism, and refusal to give up in the face of challenges.  He has helped to change the way people view...
By Rochel Field, Teacher at SINAI at Ma'ayanot on Jun 21, 2017
The 2016-17 SINAI School year has come to an end. During this past year we have witnessed many great achievements by our students and recognized the undeniable dedication of our teachers. We are also extremely grateful to our partner schools who have gone above and beyond to include our students in every aspect of their communities.  One particular event stands out... Our SINAI students’ participation in the I.D.E.A. Schools MakerXPO at the New York Hilton in May. Our SINAI girls worked side by side with Ma’ayanot students on a joint project for the MakerXPO, which included schools...

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