Dear PJ Library families,
Passover is almost here! When I was little, I have fond memories of going with my family to my grandparents’ house with my aunt, uncle and cousins. We sang dayenu, joyfully and loudly, while my grandfather led the seder with his Yiddish accent, and eagerly awaited my grandmother’s chicken soup. Now that I have children of my own and our family has expanded, we don’t fit around one table anymore, but have lots of tables filled with extended family. We still sing dayenu quite loudly, and have added many fun traditions every year to involve all the kids and adults. The seder is something that we look forward to! As Abigail Pogrebin writes (see below): “A seder should be captivating…especially for the children. And not just because it’s a warm-and-fuzzy goal to get the kids involved. It’s because the children are the entire point.”
Every year, I hope to create fond memories for my children including reading our PJ Library Passover stories together. Which is your favorite? Check out the book flap– they have lots of great ideas for children. So whether you are having a small, large or non-traditional seder, here are some fun ways to make the seder and Passover meaningful and memorable for your jkids:
15 Kid-Friendly Ideas
- Go on a hametz hunt. The night before the first seder, hide pieces of bread around the house. Carry a lit candle, and have your children look for and scoop the hametz with a feather and wooden spoon.
- Children can help create place cards for seder guests and draw Moses, Miriam, matzah, etc.
- When reading the plagues, throw real marshmallows for “hail.” It is fun, and a tasty treat before the meal.
- Create paper bag puppets to act out the story of Passover, or assign everyone a role and act out the story of Passover.
- Bring props to the table such as Passover masks, plagues, frogs, stickers, four question puppets, etc. and use them throughout the seder.
- Have children run through two large sheets– acting out the splitting of the sea (kids can even put costumes on).
- Use a Passover sticker board.
- Passover is all about asking questions! Ask trivia questions and hand out small prizes to those who answer (fun for kids and adults).
- Print out this kid-friendly jkidphilly haggadah.
- Have your child make something for the seder table ahead of time. Every year, I take out my children’s preschool projects and they love looking at them and using them. Here is a link to more Passover resources, and crafts including a matzah cover. https://jkidphilly.org/resources/holidays/passover/
- Older jkids and adults can offer a reading that links the seder to events in our world today.
- Here is a fun song that everyone can join in and sing. It is called “Pharoah”, to the tune of “Day-o”. What I like about this song is that nobody knows it before the seder, but it is catchy and fun to sing with everyone!
- Play Passover bingo.
- Practice the four questions with your child to prepare.
- Hide the afikomen and give small afikomen presents to all the children who search for it. At our seder, we hide one afikomen for every child there. Here is an afikomen bag craft.
Enjoy your jkid time,
P.S. See below for this meaningful piece from our Executive Director about how to honor loved ones at the seder. I know I’ll be thinking about my grandparents.