About the Silverman Yeshiva Ketana

Our institution is also known as Aderes Eliahu, the Old City Cheder, the Zilberman Cheder and Ner LeRachel Uvaneha.

Talmud Torah Aderes Eliahu implements the educational methods advocated by Maharal of Prague and the Gaon of Vilna. These methods are based on the principle set forth in Mishnah Avos: “At the age of five [a child should begin the study of] Mikra; at the age of ten, Mishnah…”

These studies involve two parts:

1. The children read each of the twenty-four books of the Tanach (Scriptures) with the appropriate cantillation (טעמים). Boruch Hashem, we have even been able to find, among the Jews originating from Chaleb, Syria, the traditional cantillation for the Writings, such as Tehillim and Mishlei. In addition, we have developed a special ‘cantillation’ for the reading of mishnayos.

2. The pupils learn the plain meaning of every word and verse, as given over to them by their rebbe, culled from the commentaries of the Rishonim — Rashi, Ramban, and Ibn Ezra on the Scriptures; Rambam, Bartinura, Gra, and others on the mishnayos.

The children review everything they study, many times; not only when first becoming acquainted with the material, but also in subsequent years. The rebbes take care to have their pupils constantly review earlier material and keep it fresh in mind. As a result, many of the children know a large number of verses and mishnayos by heart, with a clear understanding of the meaning. This greatly builds their self-confidence and gives them tremendous satisfaction and happiness in their learning.

In our Talmud Torah the learning goes on all year round, 364 days a year (except for Tisha B’Av). Even though there are no vacations, the children come to school joyfully and full of motivation.

boylearning1Even a child who is no genius, but of only mediocre talents, finds satisfaction and self-respect through reading with the class and also understanding the plain meaning of large portions of the text.

Boruch Hashem, this method has earned the support of the great gaon, Rav Steineman, shlita. Under his auspices many Talmudei Torah have been founded here in Eretz Hakodesh, implementing the basic principles of the method just described.

Likewise, the great gaon, Rav Shmuel Vosner, shlita, expressed his approval, in a conversation with the principal of a Talmud Torah of this type in Bnei Brak. Rav Vosner said that in his opinion this is the correct method for training real Torah scholars, enabling them to acquire knowledge of the entire Tanach and Mishnah. This, he said, gives them the necessary basis for subsequently mastering the Talmud in breadth and with understanding.