Sep 23, 2013

Celebrating Simchat Torah with Reading - and Sammy Spider!

Reading to children has some amazing benefits. Stories introduce new words and ideas to children, and can help them learn about complex concepts and develop their own imagination. Strong readers are able to participate fully in class, and as a result can develop more confidence as well. Reading is relaxing and a wonderful way for a child to spend quiet time alone or to have one-on-one time with a parent. On Simchat Torah we finish reading the Torah - the Jewish people's favorite story! - and begin again. Just as your little one may have a favorite story that s/he wants you to read over, the Torah plays that role for Jewish people.

What better time to help a child discover their favorite book than during Simchat Torah? If you're looking for a new book, try the Children's Books Guide list of the Top 100 Children's Books of All Time.

Looking for a book for Simchat Torah? Read Sammy Spider's First Simchat Torah!

Sammy Spider crawls down his web to inspect the candy apple Josh has attached to his Simchat Torah flag. When Josh leaves for synagogue, he doesn't notice the spider stuck to his apple! Atop Josh's flag, Sammy joins the Simchat Torah parade, dances with the Torah, and learns about this very special holiday in the Jewish year. Yound readers will learn how Simchat Torah is celebrated, as Jews finish reading their "favorite book," the Torah, and start all over again, just as Josh loves to do with his own books! 

Celebrate Simhat Torah with Josh and Sammy!

From his miniature Torah scroll to making candy apples with his mother, Josh celebrates Simchat Torah many ways. As you read along, you can participate as well!

Make a Miniature Torah Scroll

You will need: rolls of Smarties, colorful paper, ribbon

Cut paper into 4 1/2 x 2 inch strips. Roll two packs of Smarties into the paper and tie with ribbon.

Candy Apples

You will need:
10 small red apples
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup
3/4 cup water
8 drops red food coloring
10 small wooder dowels or popsicle sticks
1 sheet of wax paper

Wash and dry apples. Insert dowels or sticks. Mix sugar, corn syrup, and water in a small saucepan (deep enough to dip the apples) and bring to a boil. Add food coloring, and boil for 20 minutes. Do not stir. Remove pan from stove. Dip the apples one at a time and place on wax paper to cool.

Color the Israeli Flag

Printable flag available here.

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