You can introduce your little one to Rosh Hashanah in a fun and exciting way. This Jewish celebration is a time when you can teach your young children about the joy and meaning behind forgiveness, renewal and the beginning of a new year. You can make this meaningful event more fun for preschoolers by putting together activities that use the traditional symbols of Rosh Hashanah: apples and honey.
Honey and Apples
Since honey and apples are the most cherished symbols of Rosh Hashanah, use these ingredients to create delicious treats with your preschooler to celebrate the holiday. You can make simple snacks of sliced applies dipped in honey, or you can use apples and honey in recipes, such as muffins, sweet breads, pies and cakes to eat for dessert after dinner. Talk to your little one about how apples and honey symbolize the beginning of a sweet new year filled with health and happiness — and how people in the past used these foods to create their own Rosh Hashanah dishes.
Children love making crafts, so why not show your kids how to make fun crafts for Rosh Hashanah featuring apples? For example, you can have your child color and decorate the front of paper plates using tempera paint to look like apples, and then hang up the apple plates as decorations for the event. You can also cut an apple in half, dip it in fabric paint and stamp the apple onto T-shirts or other fabrics to create apple-themed gifts.
You can make the symbolic apple of Rosh Hashanah even more meaningful by taking your little ones apple picking at an orchard. Look in your local paper to see if your town has a pick-your-own apple orchard. Most small towns or rural communities will have a few orchards, but if yours doesn’t, you can always visit your natural foods store to choose from a variety of already-picked apples. While getting apples from a store is not quite the same as picking them from a tree, you can still use the opportunity to talk about how apples symbolize Rosh Hashanah.
Rosh Hashanah Songs
While you bake or do crafts with your preschooler, why not sing festive Rosh Hashanah songs that will really get your child into the spirit of the new year. A few traditional songs include “Shana Tova,” “Kol Shanah” and “Hashana Inshalla.” Singing Rosh Hashanah songs with your children is not only fun and festive for the new year, but also passes on a tradition that they might pass on to their own children one day.