The Bais Yaakov Academy of Queens is still on a high with the memories of the recent two-week Shabbos program, The Gift of Shabbos. It was an intense two weeks of experiencing the elevating feeling of Shabbos Kodesh through song, dance, drama, interactive lessons, food, and visual displays. The school building was transformed into a Shabbos wonderland, with artistic Shabbos bulletin boards, signs, door messages, and an entrance lobby displaying a gorgeous Gift Boutique featuring the gifts of Shabbos!
The program began with a school-wide assembly where Rabbi Mordechai Ginsparg, Menahel, addressed the girls. A true-to-life, humorous play was performed by the talented moros. The eighth graders presented the inspiring and catchy theme song with fantastic motions. Each student received a Shabbos bag filled with gifts in honor of Shabbos, including a heart necklace, Shabbos party nosh, and a Bais Yaakov logo bentcher.
Each day, the moros presented interactive and inspiring lessons to their students. Some topics covered were Neshamah Y’seirah, Mei’ein Olam HaBa, Thinking about Shabbos all week, Os Hi L’Olam, Oneg Shabbos – elevating the physical, Mitzvos, Aveiros, and Midos Tovos, and Sh’mitah and Shabbos. The girls took notes and drew pictures in their Grape Juice Journals.
Every day, the students filled out Z’miros Raffle Tickets, checking off how they prepared for Shabbos and sharing what they learned. Each day, the sound of z’miros could be heard as Mrs. Elisa Taub, program director, dressed as the Shabbos malkah, went around to all the classes with a decorated Z’miros Cart to collect the z’miros raffle tickets.
Other exciting activities were potato kugel at lunchtime, an inspiring and heartfelt Shabbos kumsitz, and a joyous cake celebration, featuring cakes with the program logo!
The program ended with a school-wide assembly where Mrs. Nechama Jurkowitz, limudei kodesh principal, addressed the girls with heartfelt feelings of hakaras ha’tov. The assembly featured a beautiful video recapping the exciting program, raffle prize winners were announced, and the entire school sang the program theme song with motions. The high-spirited emotions and the feelings of true love for Shabbos Kodesh were tangible in the air! This was a program that will not be forgotten and will enhance the future Shabbasos and lives of our students forever!