Celebrate Sukkot Using These Online ResourcesWritten by Jessica Gurtman, 21 of September, 2011
Sukkot begins at sundown on Wednesday, October 12. During Sukkot, it is customary to build a sukkah and invite friends and family over to eat festive meals. The sukkah is meant to serve as a reminder to the Jewish people of the time our ancestors spent wandering the desert. It links together our past, our present, and our future. It was the functional booth of wilderness dwellers and of yesterday’s farmers, and is the symbolic reminder today of our connectedness to the land and to nature, and points to the continuity of the Jewish people. The sukkah also lends a sense of needed perspective. We have surrounded ourselves with machines and technology, but by leaving our houses and eating in the sukkah, we are forced to reconnect with each other and nature. Maimonides also said that the sukkah helps to remind the Jewish people to live modestly, even in days of prosperity, so as to keep one’s values in perspective (from Teaching Jewish Holidays, Behrman House © 1997).
Here are some online resources for you and your students to enjoy.
Play Sukkot Home Run Derby and brush up on your Sukkot vocabulary.
Watch an animated video, narrated by Israeli artist Hadara Levin-Areddy, about Sukkot.
Head over to Babaganewz and play Sukkot games, send e-cards, look for yummy recipes, and download activities for class (most come with lesson plans!!).
The sukkah is based on the dwellings that the Israelites built in the desert. They may have been similar to contemporary Bedouin tents. Check out some Bedouin tents and compare them to the sukkahs of today.
Last year, New York City hosted a contest for sukkah design. You can see the winning entries here.
Download some activities for class:
- A word puzzle that reminds us why we should be thankful on Sukkot
- A dictionary of terms for Sukkot
- Blessings said for the holiday
- Make your own miniature sukkah
- Decorate your sukkah with these awesome paper chains, paper flower chains and paper lanterns.
P.S. It's not too late to use our Rosh Hashanah resources!