Passover, or Pesach, is one of the most widely observed Jewish holidays, so it is an important part of the year for many people. Whether or not your students celebrate this holiday at home, it’s a great opportunity to teach them a little about Jewish culture and the story behind the holiday. Make these lessons even more engaging by incorporating some fun craft ideas!
1. Craft placards of the 10 plagues.
One aspect of the story of Passover that fascinates many children is the tale of the 10 plagues. Why not accentuate your lesson with a fun craft activity, like making placards to represent each plague? For this you will need wooden dowels, double-sided tape, glue, cardstock, plastic or paper plates, and markers for the details.
Encourage your students to choose a plague that they find most interesting and use that inspiration to decorate a placard. When the project is complete, your students can hold up their placards in the right places as you recite the story.
2. Build an afikoman bag.
Another exciting part of Passover for children is the hunt for the afikoman, a piece of matzah that is hidden during the Seder meal. Add a special touch to this ritual by having your students craft bags in which the afikoman can be hidden.
All they’ll need are scissors, felt, craft glue, and decorations such as buttons, sequins, and puff paint. Show your class how to fold the felt into an envelope shape, cutting off any excess felt and sealing the edges with glue. Your students can then decorate their bags as they choose. They could even practice hiding them around the classroom!
3. Decorate a Seder Plate.
Another way to involve your students in Passover traditions is to encourage them to make Seder Plates. As your students decorate their plates, you can explain to them the significance of each part of the Seder meal and the traditions that are associated with this part of Passover. When they are finished, they will have meaningful keepsakes to remind them of the lesson and ones that they can use in their own Seder meals, if they wish.
4. Construct Elijah’s cup.
Another iconic part of the Seder meal is setting the place for Elijah. Finish off a lesson on Elijah the Prophet with a simple craft idea that your students can take home to use in their own Passover celebrations.
Coat the outside of a cheap goblet or wine glass (A plastic one will do.) with craft glue, leaving the underside of the base uncovered. Wrap colored wool or string tightly around the glass, changing color every centimeter or so to create a brightly striped goblet. Add pizzazz with sequins or other decorations.
There are many ways your students can get involved in the preparations for Passover or just learn a bit about Jewish culture. These ideas should get them started in learning about the significance of the holiday, the moral lessons it teaches, and why it is so important to so many people.
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