When you were a child, did you start each morning considering how you would be your best self? Did you think about concepts like gratitude, your role in your community, connections with your ancestors, happiness? Me neither! But your lucky children do that every day.
And each Tuesday, a group of students (in grades 3-5) elevate the way we begin our day by sharing their personal interpretations (kavanot). Consider these deep thoughts by children who are only 9 years old:
- When I open my eyes in the morning, I feel a great energy. My soul is being returned with care. That’s how I feel when I say Modeh Ani. – Samantha
- When I think of “a rooster” welcoming the morning, I think about our ancestors who woke up at the crack of dawn because a rooster knew the difference between day and night. Roosters don’t wake me in the morning. My mom does! But I like that Birkot Hashachar connects us to our ancestors long ago. – Maya
- In the eighth blessing of Birkot Hashachar, we thank God for “straightening up those who are bent.” There are several ways to look at this. Someone could be physically bent or someone could be bent on the inside. When someone is sad, they are bent and looking down. I think this blessing asks God to unbend us and help us find happiness. – Yehudah
The time that Mirowitz students spend in t’fillah impacts not only their day, but the way they live their life. It gives them a few moments to think about gratitude, their community, their ancestors and intentional joy. It taps into higher order cognition and engages their whole brains. It offers a model for deeper relationships and true community. Indeed, by choosing Mirowitz you are giving your children a gift that will shape their lives.