Posts Tagged raising-jewish-children

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

How to Fail at a Passover Seder

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How to Fail at a Passover Seder
My Passover seder was a failure. On the first two nights of Passover (or the first night if you live in Israel), Jews all over the world gather in homes for highly ritualized meals called seders.  Dating back approximately 2000 years, the seders combine blessings, rituals, the eating of specific foods, storytelling and singing.  As you can imagine, there is a lot of ground to cover.  But there is also a surprising amount of choice about which parts to emphasize and which to gloss over.  Every year, more and more Haggadot (guidebooks for the seder) are published: some are geared towards children, others to intellectuals and still others to artists.  Read more »

Celebrating Thanksgiving as Jewish-Americans

As we prepared our Thanksgiving meal last week, my wife and I discussed whether to continue our quaint, though somewhat cliché, precedent of having each of our attendees, starting with our children, recount what they were thankful for.  Read more »

Why I Won’t (Yet) Deconstruct Purim for my Kids

We recently celebrated Purim, a holiday that commemorates the saving of the Jewish people from near annihilation in ancient Persia.  Read more »

Hotel Pool or History Lesson? Navigating Israel with Three Kids in Tow

Recently, my family and I took a trip to Israel. While I had several goals for the trip, including having a fantastic time, it was critically important to me that my kids saw the diversity of Jewish life in Tel Aviv.  Read more »

Real Intercultural Family in Guatemala: Hebrew, Spanish, Portuguese and English

Welcome Susan and Shlomo! Where are you from? Susan: I was born in Connecticut but I grew up in Guatemala City, Guatemala. Shlomo: Near Tel Aviv, Israel. Where do you currently live? Guatemala City, Guatemala How did you meet? Susan: We met in New York—we were introduced by a mutual friend. It was a blind date. Shlomo: I was in the Israeli air force and working on a project for the air force in an American company, supervising the purchase of equipment for Israel.  Read more »

Teaching My Kids About Israel

One of the most contentious issues any non-Israeli Jew must face is how to think and speak about Israel. For almost 2000 years, Jews lived in forced exile, dreaming about but unable to reclaim the Promised Land. Israel became a focal point of Jewish theology and the idea of return from exile was interwoven into our liturgy. The formation of a Jewish state in 1948, therefore, was a watershed moment for the Jewish people.  Read more »

Free Range, Kosher and Jewish—Can it be Done?

I recently reminded myself of a dilemma I have regarding raising my children Jewish. I was standing over the barbeque, smelling the alluring scent of chicken and steak wafting through the air, and wondering why I couldn’t have a bite. After all, I grew up eating plenty of meat, the meat I was cooking was good enough for my wife and kids, and I was plenty hungry.  Read more »

Making Passover Creative for Kids

Greetings InCultureParent readers. My name is Josh Ratner, and I will be taking a monthly stab at describing what it is like to raise my three, beautiful children, Dimitri (age 7), Eli (age 4), and Gabriella (age 9 months), along with my wife Elena (who is a physician), as Jews. I hope I will be able to offer some interesting insights. I come at this topic both as a current rabbinical student and as someone living in suburbia with all the secular challenges and enticements that entails.  Read more »

On Choosing, Not Receiving, Religious and Cultural Affiliations

While watching Bill Maher's show on TV one night I had occasion to think about the Judaic culture I have inherited. Famous and infamous for his anti-religion stance (he thinks all religions are ridiculous, not just some), Maher was particularly confounded on the night I was watching about people who choose to change their religion as adults. What he said (and I paraphrase) is: I sort of get what it means to be born into a religion, but the idea of a fully rational adult choosing to believe in a lot of hocus pocus boggles the mind.  Read more »
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Why I Travel 13 Hours Alone with My Kids Every Chance I Get

Travelling with children, while definitely more of a mission, contradicts the old saying that “life is about the journey, not the destination.”

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What I Can Do as a White Mom After Darren Wilson’s Acquittal

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The Cultural Battleground of Sleepovers

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Does Religion Matter? Juggling Two Faiths in One Family

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Dear White Officer, Please Don't Shoot

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My Daughter’s 10 Favorite Multicultural Books

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I was Diagnosed with Cancer at Age 37 while Abroad with Kids

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How I Made My Forgotten Native Language My Child’s Strongest

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A celebration of faith around the world through simple text and rich illustrations.

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After Her Husband’s Tragic Death, She Embraced a Religion and Culture Not Her Own

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What a wonderful review! If you're interested, we'd love for you to link up this post (or any other that features diverse kid lit) with the Diverse Children's Books Link-up! You can find it at ...
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