Giving charity is an obligation that is commanded (a mitzvah) in the Torah to help those less fortunate. The word Tzedakah means justice and righteousness.
A poem about Tzedakah
The Torah teaches everyone that is only fair,
For someone who has plenty to be a mensch and share.
Whether clothing, food or toys, Tzedakah coins or more.
Sharing helps those who have less feel better than before.
Jews from all around the world should lend a helping hand,
When we share with others
We are keeping God’s command.
Ask your child in what ways they think your family can make a difference for others. Some ideas to get them started: buying extra food for the food pantry; donating birthday or Chanukah presents to less fortunate children; visiting the elderly in nursing homes.
Related activities for your child
- Books about Tzedakah:
Jumping Jenny, What Zeesie Saw on Delancy Street, Bagels for Benny
Find these books on YouTube, order from PJ library or Amazon.
- Watch the video Get with the Giving from Shaboom. The children LOVE these videos and know the characters already. Watch>>
- Discuss as a family what you learned about why it is important to give.
- Make a tzedakah box out of a tissue box or even tennis ball can and each week on Shabbat put money in to be used in a way that the family all agrees on.
Watch one or both videos about Passover and then answer the questions below:
Questions for discussion with family:
Why do we celebrate freedom on Passover?
Why do we eat unleavened bread matzoh on Passover?
Why do we eat bitter herbs?
Why do we dip parsley in salt water?
Why do we sit on pillows and recline during the Seder?
What is chametz?
Why do we set a seat and glass of wine for Elijah?