User:Maybar/bagrut project/Book sharing

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International students' lounge

Dear Gina,

Hi! My name is May Bar and I'm from Israel. I was born in Netanya city and I'm 16 years old. I have two sisters who are older than me. The biggest one is in New York for a trip and will come back in the next three months. My another sister live in Sderoth city because she is study social work in a college there. I'm worried about her safety because almost every single day the arabic villages send qassams to there. In addition to the regular subjects at school, I learn chemistry and Biology. We have an important projet about the fermentation of the beer and it's very interasting. In my spare time I dance in a professional studio. I dance ballet, Hip Hop, Modern dance and in the next two weeks I will start to use in pointe shoes at the ballet lessons. I like to listen to rock music, pank rock and almost every tipe. Last week Ben Stiler and Chris Rock came to visit in my city because they promote their moovie: "Madagascar 2". Ben Stiler huged my fried and it was very exciting, that a secceccful jewish actor like him came to Israel and was so nice to people. The holocaust it's a subject that fascinate me and in the next year I will be flying to Poland with my class friends and my teachers to see what really happened to jewish people in this period and how they survived. I think it's important for every jewish kid to go there and learn about it becauce we just hear about it and don't really know and feel what they felt. We have to remember it so it won't be happen again or something similar to it.

Hi May,

There has been a mix up about partners, so now you and I are partners! I am so excited to get to know you! I think that we have a lot in common, but that we can also learn a lot about each other’s world! I will tell you a little about myself right now. I am 18 years old. I have an older sister and an older brother. I also have two nephews who live with my parents and I. Music is a passion of mine. I love all different kinds and I sing and write music as well. History is one of my favorite subjects.

What are some of your favorite bands? Do you watch television? What is your favorite activity? What books are you reading right now?

I can’t wait to hear from you!


Hey Gina:)

What kind of music do you like the most?

Some of my favorite bands are: Nickelback, Breaking Benjamin, Daughtry, Coldplay, Default and also I like hip hop and pop music.

What are your favorite bands?

In addition I like singers from my counry.. you probably don't know them: Aviv Gefen for example.

Of course I watch TV!

I watch the series "Friends". I think I didn't miss any episode. But still I can see it all the time.

I watch also the series "Lost" but unfortunately The new episodes are very awful. It's became very boring and disappointed.

I want to see "High School Musical 3".. did you know it?

I watched 1 and 2.. and now I want see the third. My friend told me It's amazing.

What movies are you like to see?

What are your hobbies?


Wow, it is really cold here. This weekend, it was -19 degrees Fahrenheit in some parts of Colorado and we got about two inches of snow at my house!

I think I’m mostly a Rock girl. I love all different kinds of rock music!

I’m a huge fan of Nickelback, Breaking Benjamin, Dispatch, OK GO, The White T’s, 3Oh!3, Paramore, Pink and Jack Johnson. I love music! There are just too many bands to list and my favorites change on a daily basis. I listen to different kinds of music, including classical, rap, and hip hop. It really just depends on what I feel like that day!

I haven’t heard of that singer, what kind of music do they sing?

Ok, so that was a really silly question to ask, but I wasn’t sure if you liked to watch TV. Personally I do not watch a lot of TV during the school year. I watch a lot of movies and read a lot of books though. Did you read the Twilight series? That is one of my favorites! I loved the Friends series and I totally agree with your opinion of Lost. Did you see the episode where all they did was review the entire series? It was so funny! It started out as a really good show and it just went downhill from there.

I saw High School Musical and parts of High School Musical 2, but I haven’t seen High School Musical 3 yet. But I’m sure that my best friend, Amy, will drag me to it sometime! J

I really like watching action movies! Sometimes I like watching romance movies, but usually I really enjoy the big explosions and chase scenes of action movies. What are your favorite movies?

I have a lot of hobbies, but the one I put the most effort into is singing/ songwriting. I just finished my first CD, which has taken up most of my time for a little over a year. I’m really excited to get the final copy from my producer who is still working on editing the music. I should have my first copies next month!

What do you do in your spare time?

Hope it’s warm where you are!


Hey! Wow, we have similar taste in music!

And I imagine to my self it's very cold there.

I'm sure you are frizzing! My sister in New York told me that she does.

Aviv Geffen its soft rock music. I really like it.

And yes! I saw this episode of "Lost"! I think it was awful and really boring.

I love action movies! But I also like love movies. Actually I like them equally.

Are you really singing?

Its sounds great! I wish I had beautiful voice. If anybody will hear me sings, he will want run away! :D

I dance in my spare time. I think I told you.

Wait to hear from you!


Did you write me in Belief, Indifference, or Denial??

Hello! It has been freezing!!! I bet it is even colder in New York since it is further north. I guess I will find out! My teacher for this class is taking myself and some other students to Washington DC in two weeks! It is just a few hours outside of New York, and I have been told it is beautiful in the summer. Unfortunately I have only been there in the winter. Not to say that the city is not beautiful in the winter, but I just really do not like cold weather!

I’m sure your voice is not that bad! Besides, you have excellent taste in music so you fit right into the music group! J I cannot dance to save my life, it is really painful to watch I have been told!

I think I wrote to you in “Belief, Indifference or Denial” although that might have been a little confusing. I know I posted a reply to that question, but I do not know if it was addressed to you specifically.

Hope to hear from you soon!


Choiceless choices

Dear May,

In the book “Night” there were countless choicless choices. From the very beginning, people were forced to move into ghettos but it was under the disguise of the belief that the government was doing this to protect the Jews. The Jews were given the choice of getting on the trains or being beaten or killed. Throughout their imprisonment they were forced to work, but it was under the disguise of it being a choice. The Nazis had a power over these people because they made it appear that it had been not only their fault, but also their choice.

What do you think? What examples do you have from the reading?



Survivors Who Champion Human Rights

Please address your partner and discuss why, as a survivor of the Holocaust, does Elie Wiesel continue to be a champion of human rights around the world.

Dear May,

I full heartedly agree with you on this. After surviving such a tragedy, I know I would want to help prevent such a horror from happening again. I feel like only someone who has lost all of their rights, even the most basic right of being considered a human being, could truly voice the feelings of those without rights. I know that there are survivors who can not talk about their experiences because it is too painful for them. This is completely understandable, and no one should be forced to relive a nightmare. However, those who are able to share their story are a powerful influence and a powerful voice for Human Rights campaigns. Sometimes that is all that is needed to make a world of difference in a person’s world and future.

Would you be able to relive such a tragedy if it could change the life of another person?


Replay To Gina

In the book 'Night', Elie is a survivor and I think that he is a major-general of Human Rights. 

He and a lot of other people, succeed to deal with the horrible distress. They got utmost disrespect treatment and their natural rights as a human were completely disregarded. After Elie's survival he continued to remember as a champion because he passed such an enormous ordeal and was revealed as a stronger person, and became a wiser person.

He became a person who could go through hard experiences and still go straight with his head high. I Think that after his ordeal, he made sure not to disrespect anyone else because he knew how it felt to be humiliated and feel so little, even though all of the humans are equal and have egual rights.

What do you think?

Indifference or Helplessness

When Elie does nothing to defend his father when he is beaten by a kapo (36-37), has Elie turned from a loving son to a dispassionate survivor? Describe your feelings about this scene. Identify/Explain an example from times today/your life when this dilemma has also surfaced.

Please remember to address your partner at the beginning of your reply.

Thank you.

Dear May

I have never faced this type of dilemma. I honestly don’t understand how they can ask for an example from our own lives when we do not live in the same conditions that Elie did.

In some strange way, I understand why Elie did nothing; there was nothing he could do. If he said something, he would just be beaten too, or worse, his father would only be beaten more. To many, he seems like he has become nothing but a cold stranger, but maybe he was doing what he thought would best protect his father. Reading this part made me sick, because I couldn’t help but wonder what I would have done. Knowing me, anything I did would only make the situation worse. Elie’s father knew that if his son got involved, he would only be beaten as well, he didn’t want that for his son.

Do you think Elie made the right choice?



Hello May,

It’s interesting that this is one of our topics for discussion because the entire time I was reading this book I kept thinking that there were many events that foreshadowed the tragedies that occurred in the Holocaust. One of the most striking examples to me was the situation with Mrs. Schachter. Her hallucination of a “terrible fire” foreshadowed the crematoriums, but no one wanted to listen to her panicked cries. How were they to know that there was some truth to her crazed ranting? Her fellow prisoners tried to reason with her, which they later did with themselves and each other, in hopes of calming not only her but also themselves. Eventually her fellow passengers turned against her and beat her to get her to be quiet. They would eventually turn against each other in their struggle to survive.

I wonder how many other people had some knowledge of what awaited them in Auschwitz. People were probably too afraid to voice those fears, as if voicing them would make them a reality. Perhaps the ranting of this mad woman served to forewarn the other captives of their fate, even if they did not want to admit it.

What do you think? What were other examples of foreshadowing that you have found?



Is There Any Morality to Survival

Is there any morality to survival? Should one survive at any cost? Consider the Madame Schachter scenes, the scene when Elie teaches his father to practice the hated militarism of his persecutors by marching in step, the scenes with Rabbi Eliahou, the advice Elie receives from the head of the block not to feed his dying father, “Instead you ought to be having his ration.” Use at least two of these scenes from the book and comment about this dilemma raised. Then offer an explanation of where you would draw the line in doing what was necessary to survive.

Please address your partner at the beginning of your reply.

Thank you.

Dear May,

Many people believe that the ability to reason is at the core of what makes us human, is morality a part of that? I think that when we lose our morality, we lose a part of what makes us human. However, if our survival is based on if we decide to take a moral path or an immoral path, then can we really say that it is wrong to take the immoral path. I know I am not in a situation to judge one way or another. I honestly do not know what I would do. As much as I love the people around me, I feel like animal survival instinct would take over, just like any other human. In the end, Elie chose to hold to his morality, but doing what he could to help his father, even if it cost himself. Can there be anything nobler then that? Although in the end nothing could save his father, Elie could at least live the rest of his life with the knowledge that he did what he could.

What would you have done in Elie’s place?



Elie is told to be silent when his father is beaten. Eli imposes a ten year silence on any discussion of his experiences of the Holocaust after liberation. Much of the world was silent to the plight of the victims. Please comment on the role silence plays and how silence differs in each of the situations above.

Please address your partner at the beginning of your reply.

Thank you.

Dear May

I can not imagine what it would be like to have to keep silent when someone you care about was being tortured. Silence, in some cases, is similar to torture. When people give you the silent treatment, it is sometimes worse then if they yell at you. There is something so uncertain about silence. I’ve heard of people who lived by themselves and had no one to talk to, it made them go insane.

The silence that many survivors imposed after their liberation is understandable. They needed time to heal, and sometimes silence is the best medicine for healing after a horrible experience.

Silence shows respect. When you are at a funeral, silence is a necessary part of the ceremony. You are silent in respect of the dead and the memories you and others have of them. When you enter a sacred place, you are silent.

Have you ever been in a situation when silence was necessary?


Where is God?

After witnessing the hanging of a young boy and two others in the camp, a man behind Elie poses the question, "Where is God now?”. Elie writes “Here He is, He is hanging on the gallows”. Describe your thoughts/feelings about this scene in the book.

How would you/do you answer the question of “Where is God” in the midst of experiencing evil.

PLease address your partner at the beginning of your reply.

Thank you.

Dear May,

I remember how hopeless I felt just reading this part of the book. I remember that even though I was not physically there witnessing this evil, I felt like I was mentally and spiritually there. When Elie says, “Here He is, He is hanging on the gallows” I think he was voicing what others were too afraid to say. They felt like if they said that God was dead, then they would lose all hope because their faith in God was all they had left.

It would be hard to not ask, “where is God?” when all around you is death and pain. How could you keep your faith when everyone you love and care about are suffering and dieing? I would not be strong enough, I know that. To many, God was dead. I think in some cases that was what killed people, they had nothing else to live for.

The closest experience that I have is when I lost my grandpa and later my grandma. With my grandpa I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye, but I knew he was suffering. He was miserable because he couldn’t remember who anyone was. I hated that there was nothing I could do. With my grandma, I watched her die. I spent weeks by her bed in the hospital as she just kept getting weaker and weaker. I held her hand as she sobbed because she was in so much pain. All I could think was why? Why does she have to suffer like this? There was nothing I could do to help her. Being helpless when dealing with a loved one’s pain is the hardest thing in the world, you can not help but feel angry.

What do you think? How did you feel when reading this part of the book?


Final Thoughts

Dear Students, We want to thank all of you who participated in the forums by creating a meaningful dialogue with your partners.

Many of you have shared some very moving personal thoughts and have taken the time to write profoundly about NIGHT.

We would like you to take this opportunity to reflect on the book, the forums, and the process. In addition, please share your final projects with your partners and express your farewells to one another.

Thank you.

Your teachers, Barb & Nellie

Dear May,

Wow! I can not believe that this class is almost over! We still have one big project left to do before we are done with the class. We are supposed to work in groups and create a poster board about modern day genocides. We also have to create a newspaper talking about what has happened in the country of our choice. I chose to work by myself and my country is South Africa. This will defiantly be the biggest project so far this year, but I’m excited to learn about the conflicts in South Africa.

This has been a really neat experience for me, and I hope it has been for you as well. I really enjoyed hearing what you had to say about the book. Thank you for taking the time to tell me about yourself, and your home. Thank you for being patient with my questions and for being honest with me about how you feel about whatever is going on in your life. I really hope that the situation where you live gets resolved soon and peace can become a part of everyone’s life. There is a time for everything, peace and war. Maybe the time for war is now, but I hope that the time for peace is soon.

I think that if there were more programs like this, maybe people could find a way to be more open and understanding with others. I have looked forward to writing to you and hearing your thoughts on the different topics. I want to wish you the best of luck in everything that you do! I know you will go far!

Best of luck,