Hanukkah Fun

Savvy Parenting Staff
November 29, 2015

Hanukkah is almost here. If you haven't started already now is the time to get organized, get ready, get the story straight, get your dreidel-spinning skills in shape, and get excited for the Festival of Lights. To help you on your way are a few of our favorite Hanukkah family activities. Enjoy! 

Hanukkah Window Ornament

This is a wonderful addition to your window display of your Menorah.Glue popsicle sticks (or the larger craft sticks) together in the shape of the Star of David. (You can make this an educational activity by having your child count the number of sticks needed as well as the triangle/inverted triangles to make the star). Paint the sticks with blue paint and glitter. You can affix the star to a window either by gluing a string loop and then hanging it from a tack affixed to the top of the window sill or using double sided tape to affix it to the window.

Materials Needed: Popsicle sticks (or craft sticks), paint, glue, glitter, string/thread

Hanukkah Cards

Send your Hanukkah good wishes to friend and family by making cards.To make a pattern for the Star Of David star, first draw a triangle and then draw a triangle upside down. Fold a piece of blue construction paper in half to make your card. Trace the star on the front of thecard. At this point, you can do several variations: trace the star with glitter glue, cut out the star so it makes a window into the inside of the card, or cut out a slightly smaller star out of foil (or white paper) and glue it onto the larger star then outline. Write a personal message inside and send to friends.

Materials Needed: Blue construction paper, foil (optional), glitter glue (optional), glue, scissors

Dreidel Mobile

This is a cute Hanukkah project. Cut out one large dreidel from construction paper and several smaller ones. Have your child decorate the dreidel by painting or coloring it. You or your child can then write the Hebrew letters (nun, gimel, etc.) on the various size dreidels either in black ink or you could do glitter. Hang the smaller ones from the larger dreidel using yarn or string. Then hang the large one from the ceiling and you've made a wonderful Hanukkah decoration!

Materials Needed: Construction paper; paint, markers or crayons; glitter (optional); yarn or string

Handprint Menorah

Take a large square tile (12x12 or larger). Have your child paint the tile. Allow to dry, and then trace your child's hands on the tile with the thumbs overlapping. The 4 fingers of each hand will be the candle holders with the two thumbs holding the center "shamash" (servant light) candle. Glue nuts (as in nuts & bolts) on each of the fingers. Glue two nuts (one on top of the other) on the thumb to elevate the shamash. You may also write "Happy Hanukkah!" on the tile if there is space. Allow to dry. To light the candles, remember to use the shamash candle to light all the others and you will need to melt the bottoms of the candles to get them to stand on the nuts.

Materials Needed: Large tile, paint, permanent marker, 10 nuts, Hanukkah candles

Making a Small Menorah

This is very cute and easy project for young kids to make at Hanukkah. Buy a small rectangular piece of white tile (about 8"-12"long x 3" wide). Have your child paint the tile. Once the tile is dry,glue a small piece of tile in the center to elevate the shamash(servant light) which will be used to light all the other candles. Then help your child glue 9 small nuts (as in nuts and bolts) to the tile. Glue four on the left side, one on the small tile for the shamash, and four on the right. Your child can then decorate the base tile with other small pieces of tile or leave it as is. When lighting the candles,you'll need to melt the bottoms a little bit and then place them on the nuts. Don't forget to light the center candle first and use that to light all the others.

Materials Needed: Rectangular piece of plain white tile, 9 small nuts, small pieces of decorative tile (like the kind to make mosaics), paint

From the Parents

  • Kristen Mansharamani

    I think this is such an important idea. "Light" is a theme that runs through so many holidays in very diverse cultures around the world. For next year, if you are recognizing different traditions at home, remember also Diwali (predominately India) and Eid (Muslim countries). At Torit Language Center Montessori, we have a week long curriculum for each of five holidays for our 3 year olds through six year olds. We draw parallels and similarities among traditions across Diwali, Eid, Hannukah, Christmas, and Chinese New Year. We celebrate with art, food, clothing, and traditional decorations and celebrations for those holidays. The internet has a wealth of resources. Even introducing the "vocabulary" of other holidays paired with one little project at home is a great thing.

    over a year ago

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