How are you teaching Rosh Hashanah this year?
We've tapped into our rich materials and rounded up a few new ideas for you to enhance student learning this new year.
Put On a Play
Few learning experiences are more meaningful than those students create for themselves. Help students recount the story of Isaac's birth, traditionally read on the first day of Rosh Hashanah, through a skit. Bring the characters, events, and ideas of the story to life with the script, from Sedra Scenes. The book contains skits for every Torah portion, and combines contemporary settings and vocabulary with stories that are faithful to the biblical text.
Have a Seder (yes, a seder)
Are you using Jewish Holidays, Jewish Values this year? The student journal describes how Sephardim hold a Rosh Hashanah seder. The Lesson Plan Manual takes it a step further, giving directions for how to hold your own Rosh Hashanah seder to represent student hopes and wishes for the new year. Here's how.
Teaching Jewish Holidays is a comprehensive reference that offers a wealth of creative strategies, plus complete historical overview, vocabulary, and more, for each Jewish holiday. Here's one activity for primary grade students from the Rosh Hashanah section.
Teach the concepts that (a) we are partners in God's creation of the world, and (b) creation is not finished - we are helping God continue the process. Tell children that God created lemons, water, and sugar cane. We can create lemonade. Then make lemonade and share it. Then tell the children that God created corm. We can create popcorn. Then make popcorn. Talk about this experience of partnership with God in the continuation of creation.