CKids’ Tu B’Shevat Event Encourages Intergenerational Dialogue By Estee Hanoka for…
Ethan Ickowiz from JEMS Bondi, NSW is the new JEWQ Champion.
CKids International crowned Ethan “Ultimate JewQ champion of Australia” at the JEWQ grand finale Sunday night, Nov 29th. He also won a grand prize of $1018.
JewQ is an international competition where Jewish children study and get tested on fundamental concepts in Judaism. The competition is for children who do not attend Jewish day schools.
120 contestants from 6 cities (Brisbane, Cairns/North Queensland, Gold Coast, Melbourne, North Shore Sydney) in Australia vigorously studied topics of Jewish prayer, holiday, heroes, life cycles, and traditions from July 2020-November 2020. There were four tests. The first three were administered locally. Contestants who got passing scores qualified for the final test which took place over Zoom. Judges at CKids HQ in New York administered the tests.
The finalists were treated to local grand trips (in compliance with the Australian Health Ministry’s covid guidelines) before watching the grand finale, which included an interactive virtual game show which was then followed by the award ceremony.
Each of the champions were awarded a gold, silver, or bronze medal, followed by the announcement of the grand winner from each grade level, and concluded with the much-anticipated announcement of the overall winner and new title holder of Australia’s Ultimate Torah Champion: Ethan Ickowiz.
Ethan will have the option to compete in the international competition on March 14th, and attend the international grand finale in New York in May of 2021, if Covid restrictions allow.
CKids’ JEWQ program, launched in 2018, encourages children of all ages and backgrounds to explore more about Jewish history and culture. With over 2500 contestants participating in more than 130 cities worldwide. The Australian division of JEWQ started in July of 2020, with children learning via Zoom.
“JewQ instills in children the excitement, meaning, and relevance of Judaism in their daily lives,” says Rabbi Mendy Kotlarsky, director of Merkos Suite 302, “Ethan is a shining example that even in the most challenging times, our Jewish education and connection never needs to be compromised.”
Contestants in the United States and Europe are still in the middle of the competition. Australia is on a different schedule due to the difference in the school year.
To learn more visit CKids.net/jewq.
CKids is a project of Merkos 302.