On April 29, the students in grades K-7 of Temple Tifereth Israel came together for a special project. The weather was beautiful, though a little chilly!
In the fall, CJP sent us seeds from Israel as a way to promote the Passport to Israel program. The theme for this years’ Passport to Israel Program was “Seeds for Israel.” CJP send these seeds “to honor and recognize the legacy of Myra Kraft.” The Myra and Robert Passport to Israel Program helps teens in the Boston area experience an Israel trip just as Myra Kraft did wheren she was in High School.
I handed these seeds off to my 5th/6th grade teacher, Wayne Freedman, and told him we should do something with them but I didn’t know what yet. His class was studying Israel this year. Wayne decided we should plant them around our building to help beautify our space and connect Temple Tifereth Israel to Israel. He spoke with our Temple President, Lauren Cherkas, and Rabbi David Kudan about his idea. Lauren showed Wayne where he should have the kids plant them– around the walkway into our lower level and in the space that was once our garden.
When you walk into the main entrance of Temple Tifereth Israel, you cross over this bridge to the front door, since it is built into a hill. I didn’t even know there was a garden at some point on our property! On the other side of the bridge there is a beautiful space with flowering trees. This space doesn’t feel like it is in the city of Malden. It’s quiet and peaceful. The students pulled weeds and planted the seeds. Hopefully in a few weeks, we will have some beautiful new flowers from Israel growing around our property. We are also planning on creating some mosaic artwork to place in our newly rediscovered garden.
From the Jerusalem Talmud, Kiddushin 4:12, ‘It is forbidden to live in a town with no green garden.’ Now we as a school, have helped create our own green garden of Israel, Beauty, and Peace.
Liz Corman Shiro
Director of Education, Temple Tifereth Israel, Malden