Menashe S., a graduating senior at SINAI’s Maor High School, spoke at SINAI’s annual Staff Appreciation Dinner on May 27. Here are his heartfelt words:
When I first began my journey at SINAI’s Maor High School I wasn’t really sure how it would go. I had been to five different elementary and middle schools by the time I turned 14. By the end of 8th grade I wasn’t sure where I would end up next. I nearly failed 8th grade pre algebra, and my mom knew I needed to make a change. When she first told me about Maor High School, I was reluctant to go for an interview. I’m still not entirely sure how I did end up there, but looking back it was by far the best decision I could have made.
In ninth grade, my self-esteem had dramatically improved. Ms. Robertson carefully explained each math equation to me from different angles and described how they logically worked. This was the first year I can remember passing math class, without extra tutoring outside of the classroom.
During my sophomore year I really understood how to study correctly. In Ms. Robertson’s English class, we experimented with different study techniques that enabled me to work for hours at a time, taking short 10-minute breaks. By the end of the year I was confident enough in my study skills that I spent that summer taking an SAT course 4 days a week. This was something I couldn’t have even imagined doing a few months earlier.
As my study skills improved so did my knowledge. I began taking an interest in the religious topics discussed in my classes with Rabbi Gold and Rabbi Horowitz. They helped me understand the Torah, and the valuable lessons that it teaches. Then I began studying with Rabbi Rohr at the beginning of my junior year. Every class was full of passion and an appetite for knowledge. I will continue my spiritual journey for the rest of my life. I will never forget the passionate conversations that we had.
This year, I took Ms. Carle’s environmental science class. We researched EVERYTHING there is to know about solar panels. If anyone is interested, “Sun Power” solar panels are a great investment. Ms. Carle helped me create a website, a research paper, and a power point regarding the benefits of solar power.
Mr. Gandler was more than a teacher for me. Even when I was no longer in his class he continued to be a mentor, an inspiration, and a good friend. He brought history to life for me.
For all four years of high school I have been an active member of the Kushner wrestling team. There has been a constant trend of Maor students trying out for wrestling. Undoubtedly this is because of our coach. Coach Cilio works tirelessly to expand the wrestling team and maintain rapid growth. Right now he is conducting a team practice. I would not have succeeded in wrestling if not for him. But it goes beyond the wrestling mat. He teaches us life lessons regarding discipline, dedication, and perseverance. These lessons convert to every aspect of my life, including academics.
Words cannot express my gratitude to Ms. Robertson. She never lost faith in me and helped me at times when I was the most discouraged. She was crucial in my academic growth. Without Ms Robertson I am confident I would not have achieved my goal of entering The University of Hartford next year.