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Jewish Holiday Sukkot Celebration in Picture Book and Story for Young Readers

Cindy Hewitt is a retired teacher with a passion for children's literature. Read-aloud stories add quality to a child's life experiences.

Celebrate Sukkot With Special Decorations and Family

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Special Jewish Holiday of Sukkot With Family

Shoshana Nambi's The Very Best Sukkah-A Story From Uganda is a delightful story of the special Jewish holiday Sukkot. This is a holiday in which homes are decorated and families come together to celebrate. Shoshi lives in a village in Uganda. Sukkot is her favorite Jewish holiday and she and her brothers enjoy decorating their hut at this time of year for the family celebration. Her village has a contest for families to enter their hut as the best decorated for the holiday. A lesson of working together is part of the decorating and celebration in her village. Soshi lives with her grandparents in the Abayudaya Jewish community of Uganda. She nejoys helping to prepare the Shabbat meal on Friday evenings. Her family attends Shabbat services at the synagogue.The holiday of Sukkot comes after Yom Kippur is over. It is time to create the decorations for their hut for the contest. The families of the village have all kinds of decorations and everyone visits their neighbors to admire the decorations. The rabbi is the judge for the winner of the best sukkah. A storm creates a disaster for one hut and the life lesson of helping one's neighbors is seen when the village helps one of their own to recover from the storm. A surprise ending comes when the winner of decorated sukkahs is announced.

Moran Yogev contributedher talents as an illustrator with colorful and authentic illustrations to tell the story. Shoshani Nambi includes a final description of the Abayudaya people of Uganda. She also includes a conprehensive glossary of words from the Hebrew language and music lyrics in Hebrew that the Abayudaya community sings when they celebrate Sukkot.

The Very Best Sukkah-A Story From Uganda was published by Kalaniot Books and is recommended for ages 7-11. It has an ISBN of 978-1-7350875-8-0.


Colorful and Authentic Illustrations Tell the Story of Sukkot

Shosih and her goat in her village in Uganda

Shosih and her goat in her village in Uganda

It's time to decorate for Sukkot

It's time to decorate for Sukkot

Daudi and his family have special lights for their sukkah

Daudi and his family have special lights for their sukkah

Adding finishing touches for upcoming celebration of Sukkot

Adding finishing touches for upcoming celebration of Sukkot

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A storm brings disaster for one of the huts

A storm brings disaster for one of the huts

The village comes together for the special Jewish holiday of Sukkot

The village comes together for the special Jewish holiday of Sukkot

Bring the Celebration of Sukkot Into Your Classroom for a Multicultural Experience

Celebrating special multicultural holidays with my students was a favorite activity when I was in the classroom. Traditions, food, and games were all part of my curriculum when I wrote a special curriculum for celebrating these holidays with my young students. I always included Jewish holidays in my curriculum even when I did not have Jewish students in my classroom. Most students had friends who were Jewish and celebrating a Jewish holiday added to their knowledge of their friends who were Jewish. Picture books and stories were always my go-to tool to introduce these holidays. Nambi's The Very Best Sukkah-A Story From Uganda is a great choice for introducing the holiday of Sukkot to students.

The Jewish celebration of Sukkot will be held this year on October 9-16. This celebration follows the end of Yom Kippur on the Jewish calendar.

*Read The Very Best Sukkah-a Story From Uganda in a story time session. Have a globe available for students to locate Uganda.

*Give a brief age-appropriate history of the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. This holiday honors the journey that the Jewish people took through the desert on their way to Israel.

*Call attention to the idea that the village people will have a contest to determine the best decorated hut for this year's celebration of Sukkot. The village people used a variety of fruit to decorate their huts. Bananas, passion, fruit, mangoes, and pineapples were all part of the decorations. Bring in samples of these fruits for students to have a tasting party.

*What was the life lesson that was learned during this holiday? Why is is important to work together on a project to make it a success?

*Hve fun with the Hebrew vocabulary words that are included at the end of the story.

© 2022 Cindy Hewitt

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