Kids & Parenting

Hanukkah for kids

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Hanukkah for kids...what could be more fun?
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Hanuakkah ideas for kids and families make the holiday brighter

Hanukkah is a perfect holiday for kids and families. Spinning the dreidel, singing the songs, enjoying latkes with applesauce, and listening to Hanukkah stories are all ready-made for kid-friendly fun.

But maybe you're looking for some new ideas for adding more fun to Hanukkah for kids. Something different. You've come to the right place! It's time to get creative with Hanukkah!

Add a new twist to an old story

The Hanukkah story is an exciting tale of heroism, triumph against unimaginable odds, and the power of belief. Unfortunately, most kids Hanukkah books manage to distill all that excitement  down into a rather dull story about some oil that lasted longer than expected. No wonder so many kids focus on the presents -- a recent and mostly American addition to the celebration, by the way.

If you're looking for a way to add some excitement to Hanukkah for kids, set aside the oil story and focus on the adventure story. Do your research and learn about the events that rival any Indiana Jones story, then share them with your kids.

Instead of reading a book, consider:

Making a home video of the kids acting out the story of the heroic Jewish freedom fighters reclaiming their sacred Temple. Have them create props, encourage them to learn about the whole story as they create their script and act out the scenes. Premier their creation to family and friends while feasting on latkes, sufgeniot and other Hanukkah treats.

Add beauty to the holiday -- and whimsy and fun and silliness, too

While there traditional hannukiot are beautiful, grandmom's silver menorah is not likely to capture the attention of a small child.  A visit to a Judaica store will yield dozens of choices in kid-friendly hannukiot.  Designs featuring sports themes, Disney characters, musical instruments or trains are just a few of the options.

Let your children each pick out their own Hannukiah and candles. That way, each night of Hanukkah will be a chance to see their very own menorah filled with candles and part of the celebration. That will make add something extra-special to Hanukkah for kids.

Make a big deal of the holiday

On the Jewish calendar, Hanukkah is usually seen as one of the lesser holidays. But its proximity to Christmas`can make it hard to keep it in perspective. The answer?  When it comes to adding something new to Hanukkah for kids, forget the perspective. Go for the big celebration.

That doesn't mean competing with Christmas with its focus on gifts and Santa Claus. Instead, celebrate kes the holiday special. what ma

Plan a big family dinner.  Make homemade sufgeniot and latkes. Have a neighborhood dreidel competition. Talk about the issues behind the Hanukkah story like religious freedom and the power of acting on one's convictions.

Show your kids that you're excited about the holiday and all it represents, and they will catch your enthusiasm. Get creative with Hanukkah for kids, and you just might find your own excitement growing with each day of this special holiday.

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