A New Jonah Story to Supplement Yom Kippur Teaching

The Book of Jonah, with its message of religious universalism, comprises almost the entire afternoon reading for Yom Kippur. The Jonah story highlights how all people, Jews and non-Jews, are entitled to God's blessing and forgiveness.

For young children, supplement your Yom Kippur teaching with an approachable retelling of the Bible story. 

Jonah's Tale of a Whale, by Barry Schwartz and illustrated by James Rey Sanchez, tells the story of Jonah using simple words and features dramatic illustrations that bring it to life.

Jonah lived by the sea. As a boy, he heard fishermen tell tales of whales that swallowed up ships. But he never expected to be swallowed up himself.
Perfect for a Yom Kippur read-aloud story. Children will follow Jonah on his famous biblical adventure as he runs away to the sea, gets gulped down by a great gray whale, and then finds his way back home again. 

As a follow-up conversation, ask students to consider why it's important to care about others, even if we don't know them and will never meet them. Explain to students that we learn the importance of caring about others, even those who behave or live differently from us, in the story of Jonah.

 Also by Barry Schwartz:

Adam's Animals (ages 3-7)

Adam gives a name to every animal, from the aardvark and the aardwolf to the bandicoot and the the bongo, and all the way to the zebra and the zebu. But Adam is at a loss for words when he meets someone who looks a lot like him... Only a bit different.

Beautiful, lush illustrations complement this fun read-aloud.




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