Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Happy New Year, Trees!

Tonight we celebrated Tu B'Shvat with the kids.  Tu B'Shvat or the "New Year of the Trees" is Jewish Arbor Day. Scholars believe that originally Tu B'Shvat was an agricultural festival, marking the emergence of spring.  Many celebrate the holiday by planting trees and eating foods from trees like fruits and nuts.

We spent our Tu B'Shvat teaching the kids about this holiday through conversation, videos and songs. Some of our favorite videos were from Shalom Sesame (the Jewish Seseme Street).  The kids really enjoyed watching Ernie teach them about how to plant a silly garden.

The kids also spent time coloring trees on brown paper bags and we enjoyed some dried fruit and nuts.  And since we didn't have tree to plant, the kids were given their own potting kits so that they could plant grass to water and watch grow.  We concluded the evening by reading a book about Tu B'Shvat from PJ Library.  We really enjoyed this evening's celebration, even if it is considered one of the minor Jewish holidays.

Mommy helping the kids with their pots
 Aiden enjoying all of the dried fruits and nuts
 Madi putting seeds and soil in her Panda Pot
 The kids with their animal pots
 The decorated bags ...
 Madi and her Tu B'Shvat book
 The kids' plants and book
Aiden wishing the trees "Happy New Year"