SINAI in the News

By JLNJ STAFF on Nov 5, 2015
“What is the higher priority, Talmud Torah or doing chesed?” Rabbi Yosef Adler, Rosh HaYeshiva of TABC recounted how this question was posed to Rav Aharon Lichtenstein z”l and Rav Aharon responded that “both deserve a 100 percent commitment of our available time.” Rabbi Aharon added that “at different stages of lives we need to reevaluate how to strike the appropriate balance between the two.” “During our talmidims’ years in yeshiva,” Rabbi Adler explained, “the primary focus needs to be on Talmud Torah. At the same time, we strive to impart the importance of chesed on our talmidim, for what...
By Amanda Liefer on Jul 9, 2015
Swim for SINAI, a fundraiser for SINAI Schools, will take place at two locations: at Camp Shalom on Monday, July 13, and at the Chabad Kiddie Camp in Teaneck on Wednesday, July 15. Created at Camp Shalom four years ago by Dvora and Dov Brandstatter, Swim for SINAI has raised thousands of dollars for SINAI. Malka Flamholz has also helped Dvora organize the program. “Swim for SINAI is a way to educate the children of our community about sensitivity, inclusion and helping others.” Dvora Brandstatter said. “It is a program that gives children the opportunity to make a difference while having a...
By Abigail Klein Leichman on Jun 16, 2015
Jewish students with learning or developmental disabilities got to express their artistic talents for the benefit of the Sinai Schools scholarship fund last Monday in Teaneck.More than 70 original artworks — from sunsets and self-portraits to animal and abstract motifs — were created by 60 7- to 16-year-olds during art therapy sessions at three Sinai locations. The artworks were framed professionally and displayed at an open student art show and sale at the Avenue, an event space.The third annual “Unique Inspirations” show served many purposes: Giving Sinai students a platform for showing and...
By Esther Hirsch on Jun 16, 2015
Teaneck—Under the blue and pink lights of the Avenue Event Space, parents, teachers, friends and students milled about, pausing to marvel at the paintings displayed on easels atop tables and adorning the walls. Light classical music played in the background, as the attendees enjoyed an array of hors d’oeuvres and hot crepes.On Monday night, June 8th, from 6 pm to 8 pm, the Avenue was the site of an art show and auction entitled “Unique Inspirations,” a joint collaboration between the SINAI Schools and Bear Givers’ EmpowerArt program. Bear Givers is a New York based organization that provides...
By Bracha Schwartz on Apr 30, 2015
SINAI Schools have always been a part of Jordanna Rothschild’s life. Her father is a Vice President on the Board of Directors, and both parents are deeply involved in supporting SINAI, a provider of education to Jewish children with special needs. She helps out at SINAI dinners and events. Jordanna has also been developing her love of art as a ninth grade student in the Frisch High School art track. Seeking to combine both interests, she thought of creating a program in which Frisch students in the Artists Beit Midrash program share what they have learned about studying a prayer, and...
By Joanne Palmer on Jan 30, 2015
Imagine that you see a small group of students working with an art teacher, concentrating, creating, learning.Add the understanding that these children have developmental disabilities, and that the art teacher is in fact an art therapist. Be sure, though, that when you add this knowledge, you do not — because you should not — let it detract from the clear truth that there is joy in this learning, and learning in this joy.And then pull your gaze back to see that these children are in a larger school, where they have their own individualized learning programs but also sometimes mix with more...
By JLBC Staff on Nov 5, 2014
Imagine a place where Jewish children gather each day to learn, play, and grow as individuals committed to Torah ideals. Imagine boys high-fiving one another in the halls, girls waving over a friend to join their table at lunch, children inviting a quiet child to play with them on the playground, students in a classroom buzzing with conversation until the teacher tells them all to settle down. Now imagine that one of the children in each of these scenes has a disability–physical, social, intellectual, or academic. Hear the sound of all of their voices raised in tefillah together each morning...
By Abigail Klein Leichman on Oct 5, 2014
For at least 25 years now, Joseph Freedland of Fair Lawn has been hiring people with special needs to help in the production and packaging of shower curtains and hospital curtains at Hospi-Tel in East Orange.The family business, founded by his father and uncle and now owned by his brother David, has eight to 10 such people working in the factory at any given time. Two of them have been with the company 20-plus years.“This has become very important to me,” said Mr. Freedland, the company’s vice president for production. “We started by hiring a few people with challenges to do unskilled labor...
By Shira Greenland Wiesenberg on Sep 1, 2014
With her flowing blond hair, saddle boots, and tattoo, Brooke – a consulting Occupational Therapist – was probably not expecting the challenge I posed to her the day she arrived at our school. “Avi needs your help learning to put on his tefillin,” I said, handing her a mess of boxes and straps that Brooke might have wished came with arrows indicating “This Side Up.” Addressing her unspoken concerns, I continued. “The teacher will show you how they are supposed to go. What we need from you is to figure out why Avi cannot seem to make them work.” For Brooke, this was likely a first. For...
By Rabbi Dr. Yisrael Rothwachs on Jul 24, 2014
Yaakov* started Pre-K at his local yeshiva day school when he was 4 years old, following in his older siblings’ footsteps.  His parents were thrilled with the school, where the opportunities for spiritual, academic and social growth were plentiful and their older children had made lots of friends.  But by the time Yaakov reached Kindergarten, his teachers were concerned.  It was not unusual for some children to mature more slowly than others, but Yaakov was also becoming increasingly introverted and rigid.  With each year that passed, the social, emotional and academic...

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