The following email was sent out to all Chidon Teachers/Coaches with important information regarding the upcoming Chidon Ha’Tanach.
Chidon National Finalists,
I hope your studies are progressing well! You should be proud of yourselves for what you have learned, and for earning the title of Chidon National Finalist. I look forward to seeing you, our 200 + Chidon National Finalists from around the entire country, assembled in one room in just over a week. I would like to share a few important points with you in advance of the National Chidon Finals on Sunday, April 29th at Manhattan Day School (310 W 75th St, New York, NY 10023 )
1) Registration is from 9:00 A.M to 9:25 AM. Please be prompt.
2) At 9:25, we will begin the opening assembly, welcoming contestants from around the country. Contestants will be sent to the exam rooms at 9:45. The written contest will take place from roughly 9:45 AM to 12:30 PM. There will be 2 parts to the exam, with a short break in between them. Only actual contestants are allowed in the classroom area where the exams take place.
3) After the exams, contestants can pick up a free pizza lunch. The pizza will be located in the same large auditorium in which the opening assembly took place.
4) From 12:30 – 1:45 there will be trivia games set up around the room for kids to participate in,showcase their knowledge, and win raffle tickets for prizes.
5) From 1:45 – 2: 15 we will be adding a new exciting component to the Chidon. We will be pairing kids up in Chavrutot to learn torah with fellow Chidoners from around the county.
4) The closing assembly will begin in the auditorium at approximately 2:15 PM. Parents, family, and friends are encouraged to attend. At the closing ceremony, we will conduct the final round of the Chidon for the highest scorers from the morning’s written tests in each of the divisions. Chidon finalists who are not called up to the front for this final round will be able to text their answers in to video questions for a chance to win prizes as well. Be sure to bring a cellphone if you’d like to participate. The ceremony will conclude at the latest by 3:30 with the announcement of winners and the singing of HaTikvah. Please note that every national finalist will receive a commemorative Tanach and an individualized certificates of accomplishment by the conclusion of the ceremony.
Other Important Info
5) Bring Pencils and Snacks: Please be sure to bring a #2 pencil, because the exam will require you to fill out a scantron form. In addition to bringing pencils, students are allowed to bring snacks with them into the testing area.
6) Parking: Parking can be difficult in Manhattan. If you have a choice, I recommend using public transportation, with the 1 train being the closest subway line to MDS. There are several lots where you can pay to park near MDS, with High Rise Parking (210 West 71st Street) being the most affordable option that I know of.
7) Minian: If anyone would like to pray Shacharit near the Chidon, the West Side Institutional Synagogue (120 W. 76th St., New York, NY 10023) has an 8:30 AM minyan and is a 5-10-minute walk from MDS. There will also be an open space in the Beit Midrash on the second floor of MDS for davening which will begin promptly at 8:30 AM.
8) Parents, Teachers and Non-participants – What to do during exam: While students are taking the written exams, we are honored to have two renowned Tanach educators deliver lectures, Rabbi Moshe Shulman (bio here) and Rabbi David Fohrman (bio here). The lectures will be back-to-back beginning at 10 and will be open to parents of all backgrounds and knowledge levels. More information regarding exact timing and titles is forthcoming. In addition, there are many interesting museums and attractions within walking distance of MDS, which you are welcome to visit while your children are taking the written exam (the Museum of Natural History and Central Park are nearby).
9) Food: There will be pizza provide for contestants after the written exams. We cannot provide free lunch for family members, or other non-contestants. However, there are several kosher eateries in that neighborhood.
10) Shabbat: If you are still in need of a place to stay next Shabbat, please email me directly with details of who/how many people you need a place for. There are many people from around the tri-state area who have generously offered to host fellow “Chidoners.”
11)Luggage: For those who need, there will be space to store luggage at Manhattan Day School.
12) Subsidized Tanach Tour on Friday: I’d like to remind you that Nachliel Selavan will be giving one of his amazing Tanach Tours at the MET on Friday, April 27th. The Chidon Ha’Tanach will be partially subsidizing the costs of the tour. For those interested in participating in this unique experience, please be in touch with Nachliel directly at his email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please see his brief description of the tour below. There is limited availability, so sign up soon! Nachliel will also be leading some fascinating Tanach seminars during the Chidon next Sunday.
Come on a unique adventure at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where pesukim come to life through the artifacts. Meet the Assyrian Empire, who exiled the Ten Tribes and almost destroyed Jerusalem!See Nebuchadnezzar’s Palace, and learn about his Empire!Learn hands on about some of the characters in Tanach. For more about Tanach and Jewish History tours in museums see torahintermedia.com
Tour Starts at 10:00 AM in the great hall. Tour Duration: 90 minutes Price: $30
I’ve attached a simplified schedule Here as well. The attached schedule is not comprehensive. Please note that the timing for the concluding ceremony is approximate given the fact that the length of the final competition always varies. Please be sure to read all of the information above as well. Please continue to be in contact with your respective coaches regarding Chidon questions unless they are of an immediate concern. For sample tests, more information about the Chidon, or to watch the recent Chidon in Israel, please see our website https://chidonusa.wordpress.com/ See you soon!