Pin It
Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

Passover Craft: Seder Placemat

By
Passover Seder placemat/ incultureparent.com

Passover is the Jewish holiday that celebrates the Israelites’ exodus and freedom from slavery under the Egyptians.  The Passover Seder is a ritual feast–full of ceremony and symbolism–that marks the beginning of Passover. It involves retelling the story of the exodus from Egypt together with dinner.  The Seder plate contains symbolic foods, each with special significance to the story.

I only recently started to learn about the Seder plate at my first Passover dinner.  It is rich with history and meaning, but to a newcomer and to children, it can be a bit hard to remember the details.  I chose to make a Seder placemat to help me and my daughters remember the foods more easily.  This craft is a good one to set up while a parent is still preparing for the rest of the event.  Children often want something to do while we are busy with special preparations.  This is a perfect way to help them learn about the holiday and keep their little fingers busy while parents work on the dinner.

Here’s a brief background on the Seder plate before we begin the craft. If you think of the Seder plate as a clock, then twelve o’clock would be the maror–the bitter food to represent the hard times the Jews spent in slavery.  This is usually signified by horseradish.  At the one-to-two o’clock position is the zeroa, or roasted lamb.  While some folks employ other meat here, vegetarians tend to use beets.  The meat symbolizes the lamb that the Jews sacrificed before the first Passover.  In the four-to-five o’clock position is the charoset, a mixture of fruits, nuts and wine that is brownish in color (some have simply used applesauce).  The charoset denotes the mortar between the bricks that the Jewish slaves used in building the ancient structures for the Egyptians.  At six o’clock, you find the hazeret–romaine lettuce–another bitter vegetable representing the horror of enslavement.  Next around the clock is karpas, a non-bitter vegetable (e.g., raw onion or boiled potato), which is dipped in salt water as a symbol of the tears of those where were enslaved.  The last piece is beitzah, a boiled egg.  In the times of Exodus, people were given a boiled egg during a period of mourning.

And now here’s what you need to make your own Seder placemats.

Materials:
Multicolored construction paper
Scissors
Glue
A plate or bowl for tracing circles

Instructions:
1. I started with a large piece of construction paper, 9’x12’; we chose pink, because that is my daughter’s favorite color.  Then, in other colors of no importance, I used a bowl as a template and created six circles to use as the backgrounds to the food on the plate.

 



I have many materials in my craft closet and decided to use craft foam for the foods.  However, I don’t think this is necessary–in fact, I think using more construction paper would be more prudent if you actually want to use your placemat during a meal.  But, the craft foam was calling to me!

2. I cut out a lamb shank from the red foam.  Then I cut apple pieces (for the apple sauce) out of the red and white foams.  I cut a piece of romaine lettuce from the green foam and then an onion from the yellow and green foam.  I then made a slice of boiled eggs from the yellow and white and ended with a white horseradish with greenery on top.  I didn’t trace the shapes or spend a great deal of time practicing them before I cut.  Craft foam is a fairly forgiving material and very easy to work with.

3. After I cut out all the pieces, I set my daughter up with a small cup of wet glue and a paintbrush and let her paste the foam pieces onto the circles.  Then I showed her the proper arrangement on the placemat so she could glue them herself.



I have a vision of practicing this Seder plate with my children every year, using other crafts to create the plate.  In this way, by the time they are old enough to be trusted with a beautiful ceramic plate, they will know what everything is for!

Have fun and enjoy your time with friends and family!

For further information:
This website is full of helpful information about the Seder plate, and also discusses how to properly perform a Seder and Passover dinner.

And check out here for the perfect Passover recipe for gefilte fish.

© 2012 – 2014, Sara Headley. All rights reserved.

More Great Stuff You'll Love:


How My Chinese Mother-in-Law Replaced my Husband

And why this is the number one fight in our household

The West's Strange Relationship to Babies and Sleep

How the West sleeps is different from the rest

Primary School Privilege

Time outs due to whistling versus school's out due to poverty

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Sara Headley lives in northern New Mexico where she enjoys copious amounts of green chile. She is a homeschooling mom of three young girls. Sara taught first grade before becoming a stay-at-home mom. Sara loves crafting with (and without) her kids, though glitter still remains on the “naughty” list. Sewing, crochet, cooking, gardening and teaching are her passions…for now. Those might change later to something like philosophy, whitewater rafting and hat-making.

Leave us a comment!

2 Comments
  1. CommentsSeder Placemats - The Squishable Baby   |  Saturday, 23 March 2013 at 8:15 pm

    [...] would learn the Jewish tradition of Passover.  First and foremost,  I want to thank Stephanie at InCultureParent for helping me and answering all of my [...]

  2. CommentsFun Passover activities for kids | OnlineShoppingReport   |  Monday, 25 March 2013 at 12:43 pm

    [...] Prefer more practical crafts? Make these Seder placemats. [...]









Notify me of follow-up comments via e-mail.
Or leave your email address and click here to receive email notifications of new comments without leaving a comment yourself.

Get weekly updates right in your inbox so you don't miss out!




What Confused Me Most about Brits

The process of adjusting to the culture when I moved to England.

Do WASP Westerners Deserve Visibility in a Foreign Culture?

Yes, they most certainly do says this mom in China.

Managing a Picky Eater with International Travel

How would I succeed in getting her to eat in Europe?

A Year of Multicultural Picture Books for the Global Child

A fantastic reading list that includes a multicultural children's book for each month of the year.

Making Sense of the Berlin Wall as a Multicultural Family

How we see history has everything to do with the context in which we were taught.

21 Ideas for Families to Celebrate Ayyam-i-Ha

Crafts, recipes, books, games and more to make the most of this joyful Baha'i celebration.

Why Raise Global Citizens? An Interview with Homa Sabet Tavangar, Author of Growing Up Global

Why raising global kids is so important and the one quote everyone should keep in mind.

8 Children's Books for Black History Month

Learn about the world's richest man of all time and much more about African-American history.

Balancing Faith and Fashion with My Muslim Daughter

I never thought I would struggle to buy clothes for my daughter this young.
Agree with the thread. One example to point out is the arrogant walk on the right side to keep from bumping into each other...or you could just look where you are going like e rest of the world and ...
From Are Germans Really Rude?
[…] games from around the world or this site that shares German games or this blog post or this one too. You might find some ideas in this PDF or on TES resources or Streetplay you’...
From Five Fun Games from Around the World
[…] and a Polish Easter craft called Palma Wycinanka (cut paper palm). She also shares the interesting Czech Easter tradition of “whipping” girls and women with a special braided p...
From What’s Easter without a Whipping?
[…] InCulture Parent has a sweet Easter recipe for Italian cookies, and a Polish Easter craft called Palma Wycinanka (cut paper palm). She also shares the interesting Czech Easter tradition of...
From Polish Easter Craft: Palma-Wycinanka
[…] took me months to figure out that I was being rude (I am German, after all), and that the tutting was actually a very strong display of […...
From Are Germans Really Rude?
Dear Not Fluent, I think it's positive that you speak to your child both in Cantonese and English. Between 0-5 years, language learning is emotional, as opposed to adult learning, when you turn t...
From Do I teach my child my native language even though I am not fluent?
[…] from InCulture Parent has a sweet Easter recipe for Italian cookies, and a Polish Easter craft called Palma Wycinanka (cut paper palm). She also shares the interesting […...
From Easter Recipe: Aunt Angie’s Italian Cookies
I can relate totally. There is a point where one can adjust what read but what you read May not work at all. Mostly, it's going back to heart centered awareness not the mind that determines the bes...
From Why African Babies Don’t Cry
I can totally relate to your list, as we are raising our son to speak English and French. People say really stupid stuff about raising multilingual children, but then again, people say really stupid...
From 10 Things Not to Say to Parents of Multilingual Children

More Crafts