Each month, I get a folder of photos from our communications and marketing manager Rachel Freeman (’02), which I pick from to help tell the story of the month that we’ve just had to our board of trustees. I always look forward to opening that folder and scrolling through, seeing students running hard, or brows knitted over a project, or laughing together at play. It is always hard to narrow the list of photos down to a few that I will share, because they speak to so many curious and joyful moments here at Brandeis.
This is a photo that didn’t make it into my board report, but it’s one that immediately brought a smile to my face. In it, first grader Judah is sharing his project on sacred space with his classmates and Hamorah Menachem. I often tell the story to prospective families about my daughter Sonia coming home and wondering aloud where the sacred space in our home was, and explaining to us that sacred space was a place where you feel calm and connected. In this photo I see at least two tenets of a Brandeis education: that Jewish spiritual identity is given room to develop in a way that is authentic to each child, and that students are given many opportunities to be leaders and develop confidence speaking to a group. Parents on tours always marvel at how comfortable our students are at stopping and sharing with groups of adults what they’re up to; that comfort comes from innumerable moments like the one captured here.
The sacred space projects are on view in the main hallway of the K–3 building right now—I hope you will come see for yourselves what sacred space looks like to our first graders!
Wishing you all weekends full of calm connection, my friends.