Ten (almost) new strategies for keeping children engaged at the seder

Ten (almost) new strategies for keeping children engaged at the seder

By Rivy Poupko Kletenik, Jewish Sound Columnist

Are you worried your kids might get bored during the seder? Here are 10 (plus one bonus) great things to do before and during the seder!

1. Pesach Jeopardy: On 20 different note cards, write down elements or aspects of the seder and have children frame the appropriate question — it is, after all, about their questions!

2. Ask your children: What is the most important word of the Mah Nishtanah? Why?

3. Hide the afikomen in a place and offer “Pesach hints” to help kids find it. For example: Where were the babies thrown? Nile – near a sink? Bathtub? Bricks were made of? Earth near a plant. Have fun with it!

4. Divide up the seder so each child has a distinct “leadership role” at some point during the meal.

5. Put the Pesach music on and get the kids into kitchen! Look through cookbooks together and pick a dish that you will help them make!

6. Consider giving every child their own seder plate, then help them set it up. Make a pyramid out of the charoset!

7. Help your children plan what they will wear to the seder — something special! In some years I would arrange to have a photographer come an hour or so before candle lighting — that gets everyone ready on time and it is a great opportunity with everyone dressed up and extended family in town.

8. Make sure to give time at the seder for each child to share what they have learned in school and to show what they have created.

9. By all means have the children seated at the table! No kids’ table!

10. Remember the evening is all about the children and the mitzvah to tell them the story of the Exodus.

11. Before the seder, ask participants — children or adults — to write a letter to a character in the Pesach story or Hagaddah — one of the fours sons, Pharaoh, Moshe, Miriam, the cat! Then read letters during the Seder