Baltimore, MD - Dec. 22, 2023  - Bais Yaakov High School was dazzled by Chanukah projects from the 10th grade engineering class.  Their work is part of a year-long course introducing them to principles of engineering using the CIJE curriculum.  CIJE (the Center for Initiatives in Jewish Education) is a non-profit organization that supports over 200 Jewish schools across the country with curricula, resources, and professional development.

Mrs. Ora Attar challenged her engineering students to create Chanukah themed projects.  While at times the girls were frustrated by difficulties with their projects, this is part of the engineering design process.  They learned valuable lessons in perseverance and the importance of iterating on their designs to achieve success.  Mrs. Attar summarized to the class “You learned that if you keep at it, you are going to get a project that works and you really all did a fantastic job!”

Students pitched their Chanukah projects to Mr. Joseph Saltzman, Maryland program manager for CIJE.  “It is very impressive to see the projects which they created after only a couple months in their first year engineering class”, remarks Mr. Saltzman.  Projects include:

  • A speaker that plays Chanukah songs while flashing patterned lights in the shape of a dreidel.
  • A dreidel speed game which has LEDs for each of the letters and you need to press the button when the correct LED flashes.
  • An automatic Chanukah present opener.
  • An automated dreidel game that spins a dreidel and lights up the letter on which it lands.

All the girls enjoyed working on the Chanukah projects and sharing them with the school, especially 10th graders Rena Caine and Shifra Goldman.  “This is my favorite class,” exclaims Rena and Shifra adds, “it’s so much fun!”