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  • Ella Hakimian

Sophomore Letter

Although we are sophomores and almost halfway through our time here at North Shore Hebrew Academy High School, this was still our first Shiriyah. As a grade, we have been anticipating this event for as long as we can remember and were overwhelmed with excitement when we finally got to participate in Shiriyah. However, the overall experience was much different than what we could’ve ever imagined. We united, learned to work as a team, and celebrated unforgettable moments of victory, including a monumental win.

A definite high of the 3 day long event was our karaoke performance on Tuesday. As we all stood on the bleachers, singing and waving our flashlights in the air, we cheered on our peers who were singing “One Day” by Matisyahu. On Wednesday, we versed the freshman class in an Apache competition and won the race. As we all ran from the science lab to the school lobby where we announced ourselves to be the champions, we felt excitement and victory. Running around the campus, winning competition after competition, helped us realize how much talent and potential we share as a grade. Shiriyah was filled with spirit, nonetheless, we underestimated the amount of hard work and effort that goes into bringing the ruach of Shiriyah to life. We worked vigorously through our lunch period, during late hours, and the weekend to create perfect videos, cakes, banners and hallways. We also prepared intensely for competitions to make sure we would emerge victoriously. Our training and competitiveness definitely paid off as we took the win on Thursday night.

The purple team's theme this year was the mitzvah of Arba Kosot that we perform during the seder. Our cake presented well sculpted grape vines and tipped over Kiddush cups and our architecture project used four cups to represent the ancient Egyptian columns. Our hallway brought to life three dimensional kiddush cups and displayed creative posters for each of the times on Passover we perform this special mitzvah. We brought quotes from the Talmud as proof of the four times during the seder when we drink, during Kiddush, Mageed, Birkat Hamazon, and Hallel. Our hallway was filled with giant wine glasses to further help convey our theme. Our grade song also mentions our theme and how we will not let the other teams spill our four cups.

We owe our victory to our hard working sophomore generals, Eliana Solemani, David Moshel, Natalie Dror, and Joseph Hajibai. Our generals worked to make sure that each activity had a participant and that we were always working on our projects. They cheered with us and brought spirit into every part of Shiriyah. We owe all four of our peers and huge thank you for their commitment to helping us succeed in Shiriyah. Our incredible general, Eliana Solemani, told us that the apache relay, rushing from activity to activity, was definitely a moment from this shiriyah that she will never forget. Another student said that Shiriyah helped her meet new friends and allowed her to let loose and enjoy the fun of high school. Winning Shiriyah as the sophomore class is a huge accomplishment and, in my biased opinion, well deserved!

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