Pay attention to this ballot box, from the LaMerchav Ulpanah in Petach Tikvah (girls school): This week they declared elections there. Every student chooses one character trait which she would like to improve towards the coming new year, a trait she would like to fix – she gets into the ballot box and decides which note to put in the envelope. The choices are between: humility, looking at others favorably, initiative, perseverance, integrity, joy and more. At the end of the elections, all the notes will be counted, and the results – whatever the most important trait which the students want to work on in their lives – will be translated next year into workshops and studying sessions in the classroom.
I asked the girls for an explanation about the project, and they replied: “For us it is a reminder that the elections (in Hebrew also “choices”) do not really end today. It is important to vote, but choosing is not a one time event. Free choice is a fundamental principle in Judaism, and we choose each and every moment how to conduct ourselves in this world. May we merit to make good choices.”