The Annual Mishnayos B’al Peh Dinner took place at Yeshivah College in Melbourne, Australia, on Sunday 10 September, 19 Elul.
Attended by a record number of guests this year, parents, students, and teachers enjoyed a delicious supper and were delighted to participate in an event that recognizes the achievements of students who have taken great efforts to learn Mishnayos B’al Peh (by heart).
With the largest number of students involved and the highest levels of learning achieved than ever before, the evening was truly a celebration of Yeshivah students’ spectacular learning achievements.
The Mishnayos B’al Peh (MBP) program began in 1990 in memory of Nathan Dzienciol OBM who tragically passed away when he was in third grade. He had an exceptional dedication to learning Mishna, and now in its 27th year, the program affords our students the opportunity to fulfill the mitzvah of learning Torah by heart.
The MBP program is run throughout the year by Rabbi YY Gordon and Rabbi YY Cohen who facilitate the twice-weekly Mishnayos B’al Peh sessions and ‘intensive’ Shabbosim.
The program’s success is greatly attributed to the ‘repeat’ system on which it is based, which encourages students to be tested on complete chapters of Mishna and Tanya. Cleverly, the MBP program adopts a points system which allocates points based on each child’s age, ability, and effort – ensuring every student can ‘achieve’.
The evening recognized the 410 students who actively participated in the program this year and who, incredibly, have managed to memorize in excess of 260,000 lines of Torah over the past year – the most lines learned in the history of the program running in Yeshivah.
53 Masechtois were learned this year, while over 330 perokim of Tanya and 390 Perokim of Mishna were memorized. More than 100 students memorized an entire Perek and 35 students reached over 1,000 points – equivalent to approximately 5000 minutes of effort!
Demonstrations of skill reciting Mishnayos and Tanya by heart addresses from Rabbonim, and award presentations punctuated the evening. An address from Principal, Rabbi Smukler commended the students for their fantastic achievements and outlined that “when it comes to ‘ דברים שבקדושה – aspects of holiness’, we must always be ‘ מעלין בקדש – continuously increase and
raise our standard’, always moving forward, never being satisfied with the status quo of yesterday.”
Rabbi Chaim Tzvi Groner gave a captivating dvar torah and commended the boys on their “tremendous effort”. He noted that learning b’ah peh gives the greatest reward of protection, while Rabbi Gordon expressed his pride in the students’ outstanding achievements and commented that this evening “gives us the opportunity to honor a ‘זקן’ (zokein) – one who has acquired wisdom and now has Torah engraved in their memory.”
Students received prizes ranging from Tehillim and Siddurim to sets of Shulchan Oruch and Shas which they selected based on the MBP learning points they had accumulated. The seforim they chose was of a high caliber, reflecting the high level of learning they have reached.