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Simchat Torah

Just as Sukkot ends, Reform Jews enjoy the two-in-one-day holiday of Sh’mini Atzeret and Simchat Torah. Here are six things to know about this day of celebration.

As the sun sets on the seventh day of Sukkot, we transition immediately into the jubilant celebration of Simchat Torah. There is no time to spare; we’ve got to get this Torah party started! Simchat Torah means “rejoicing in Torah,” and this holiday is a true celebration of Torah, and all that it represents. We dance, we sing, and we make merry, long into the night

Consecration marks the beginning of formal Jewish study.

Engage your young children with the meaning of Simchat Torah. Ask them to make these "Torah Scrolls."

As a people with agricultural roots, Jews have found many ways to mark the seasonal and environmental changes that occur throughout the year. 

A fun activity to celebrate the writings of the Torah.

Activities to make the holiday of Simchat Torah meaningful to children.

In Eastern Europe, it was customary at a child’s first Torah lesson to write the Hebrew alphabet in honey on the child’s slate, and giving it to the child to lick off.  In this way, would the child always associate sweetness with Torah study.

The symbolic message of the customs associated with Simchat Torah emphasize that the Torah represents our heritage and history, and links Jews to each other over many generations. 

As Sukkot comes to an end, we encounter additional special days in the Jewish calendar: Sh’mini Atzeret and Simchat Torah

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