Monday, December 2, 2013

Fall reading 2013 The Eighth Menorah

Sammy's Hebrew school teacher has the class make menorahs to give to their families as Hanukkah gifts. The problem is that Sammy's family already has seven menorahs at home. Why would they need another one? His teacher assures him that his parents will love his gift, but Sammy is not so sure. As the holiday draws near and his class wraps gifts, practices the songs and prayers for the holiday, and has their Hanukkah party - Sammy continues to think about what he should do with his menorah. The solution he comes up with is both clever and caring.

This is a great book for a read-aloud at this time of the year. I always do a unit on winter holidays with my students and love finding new Hanukkah stories to share with them. Besides introducing some of the elements of celebrating Hanukkah, it also briefly describes the history of the holiday, and it shows a warm relationship between Sammy and his grandmother. It could easily be used to do a compare/contrast activity with another holiday.

I was lucky enough to win a copy of the book in a drawing (through the Mcbookwords Blog and Albert Whitman & Co.), and I am adding it to our school library collection.


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