Michael Marcus is a prominent Hebrew tutor and Bar/Bat Mitzvah officiator with over 25 years of experience working with all types of children. He has had amazing success because of his intense devotion to the needs of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah family.
He tells Mitzvah Market that there are two frequently asked questions which we thought would be important to share with our readers:
1. How long will it take to prepare my child for this most important day?
I assure all of my clients that their goals and mine are exactly the same; and that is, I want their child prepared and “ready to go” with complete confidence, knowledge and understanding of their Torah, Haftarah, blessings and with their speech as well. If parents want my instruction to include some history, customs and traditions, that can be provided as well. Most children are tutored for one hour each week; however, some with less Hebrew background prefer more frequent instruction. I am available 7 days a week and even tutor by video chat when face-to-face lessons are not plausible. My goal is to accommodate the needs and aspirations of the parents and the Bar/Bat Mitzvah. I pride myself on my flexibility to meet the needs of the students and parents, and bring everything together in a beautiful, personalized, caring service.
2. Should we invite our children’s friends to the Bar and Bat Mitzvah service?
There is a trend not to invite friends because the equation “kids equal noise” at services is essentially true and as we all know, we adults want a quiet dignified service that is filled with reverence and meaning. I am of the opinion that we can have a multitude of kids at the service with a minimum of disruption and have a reverent and meaningful service as well. The responsibility for this falls upon the leader of the service and how the service is conducted. If the service is meaningful and the congregation is involved then kids will participate.
During the service the Bar/Bat Mitzvah is up at the podium leading the service about 75% of the time. They actually “conduct” the service, with me always standing alongside them, helping when needed and supportive all of the time. When kids in the congregation see their friend lead the service, it seems more meaningful to them. The kids actually participate and soak up the “hamishness” and warmth and beauty of Judaism and hopefully come to the conclusion that Judaism is a wonderfully meaningful, inclusive and a vibrant religion. Does the fact that their friend is up on the Bima leading the service quiet all of them all of the time? The short answer is, “no,” but the longer answer is that the vast majority of kids participate and are impressed that their friend is the leader and they’re much more respectful. Despite any downside, I opt for having as many kids at the service as possible. They’re needed at the service because they are the future of Judaism.
For more information about Michael Marcus Tutoring visit his extended profile page in our Vendor Directory.