By Jill Fox
Temple Beth Chai’s sixth-grade religious school students took a break from their screens, meeting at a Coral Springs park for an important assignment.
Holding classes virtually since August, the staff agreed the experience offered more avenues to teach and explore than a traditional classroom.
On April 17, families took turns meeting inside a pavilion at North Springs Community Park to build a small but significant tool for their bar and bat mitzvahs: making a yad, which means hand and is an ornamented silver rod with a fist and an extended finger at the end.
Coral Springs Middle School twins Nathan and Jordan Borisoff, 12, begin studying Torah for their b’nai mitzvah in November; however, they need a yad to do so.
“In the Torah, the Hebrew lettering is quite small, and to read it properly, you need to use the correct utensil, which is a yad or Torah pointer,” said Education Director Phyllis Lasky.
Lasky guided each of the pre-teens through building their own yads, each personalized with their Hebrew name.
The brothers each had fun making them.
As far as other bar mitzvah preparations, “It’s a big responsibility,” said Nathan, who will share his January 2022 celebration with Jordan as well as their cousin, Elliott Hernandez.
“I’m really excited to make mine,” said Brooke Lamchick, 12, who attends North Broward Preparatory School and is looking forward to her January bat mitzvah as well.
Lasky said the yad really becomes a keepsake for their lives.
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- Jill Fox is an Emmy Award-winning writer and producer. She has worked in public relations and television for over 20 years. Fox lives in Parkland with her husband and their two children.
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