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Sukkot, a Hebrew word meaning “booths” or “huts,” refers to the annual Jewish festival of giving thanks for a bountiful fall harvest and commemorates the 40 years of Jewish wandering in the desert after the giving of the Torah atop Mt. Sinai.
The Jewish New Year of the Trees, or Tu BiSh’vat, lends itself to many home observations and activities. Here are some ideas for crafts, planting, quiet activities, and more.
What is a lulav and etrog? Learn about the customs, ritual objects, and music associated with Sukkot.
As a people with agricultural roots, Jews have found many ways to mark the seasonal and environmental changes that occur throughout the year. Sukkot has numerous other themes and areas of focus that encompass seasonal, historical, and theological perspectives. It is among the festivals that fall in the Hebrew month of Tishrei, emphasizing not only the cycles of the earth, but also the cycles of Jewish life. (The other holidays in Tishrei are Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur, and Simchat Torah.)
Parents and kids can work together to make these pretty lanterns, perfect for decorating the sukkah.
The past few weeks have brought mixed news in the realm of sexuality education. At the end of June, we wrote about a House sub-committee vote to eliminate programs proven to reduce teen and unplanned pregnancy, reduce abortion and save tax dollars in Fiscal Year 2016. Since then, a Senate sub-committee voted to advance similar cuts, proposing a budget that would significantly cut funding for the evidence-based Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP) and for Title X family planning centers, while increasing funding for abstinence-only until marriage programs by 300 percent. By gutting funding to family planning services for low-income individuals and undermining evidence-based programs like TPPP, these appropriations bills would leave millions of Americans without information and services to keep themselves safe and healthy.
Our tradition teaches us that the Passover Seder is meant to be a learning experience for children of all ages, from 1 - 100. Our questions are more important that the answers. As you prepare to sit around the Seder table, we’d like to offer you some additional questions to help connect the past, present, and future of our Passover traditions.