Today I will use this cloth to do a mitzvah! Hillel the Sage announced to his class. He whisked the cloth off his shoulder and snapped it in the air. The rabbi s students were puzzled and delighted. What could be done with a cloth? What mysterious mitzvah could it be? Through this charming story about the famous Hillel of the Talmud, readers will enjoy discovering that the mysterious mitzvah is taking a bath! The note for families at the back of the book will help readers dig deeper and let them think more about the Jewish value of guarding one s health, shmor et nafshecha, and how having healthy habits (like taking baths) is an important Jewish value.
Vicki Weber was in third grade when her first story was published and has been writing ever since in genres including journalism, financial writing, educational writing, and writing for children. She is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College and earned a master s degree in Religious Education from Hebrew Union College. She is the author of the classic stories collection, It s Too Crowded in Here. Vicki lives in suburban New Jersey with her husband David and with Ivan, the black lab left behind as the kids moved on to adventurous adult lives.