This post is inspired by my good friend Natasha, whom last year has taken on herself to tell her son the stories of the Torah in the most creative way. she got 2 rolling pins from Target's dollar bin, a roll of paper from Michaels'.
while She was pulling down her paints and brushes and a whole lot of resources from the shelves, her son was rolling out a long stretch of the paper, ready to start with a year long project of drawing the Torah stories. She was telling the stories and her son was painting, scribing, and asking questions, unveiling the Torah, one story at a time.
This project has just ended with the celebration of Simchat Torah, while OUR project is about to begin.
Pick a DAY:
The first thing we did after committing to do this project was to schedule a regular day. We have decided on Friday afternoon.
Get your SUPPLIES:
Unfortunately I will not be able to stop by and get supplies at Michaels’, but I will pull out a roll of trace paper left over from my architecture days, I still need to get rolling pins, paints and brushes are no problem.
- A roll of paper could be trace (semi translucent) or white paper can easily be found at arts and crafts stores.
- Assortment of drawing tools
- 2 rolling pins or wooden dowels. Glue one end of the paper to the rolling pin to create a scroll.
Telling the stories should probably be a mixed of reading from the Torah, reading stories of the Torah written by different authors, poetry, and Midrashim which are stories that have been developed by rabbis throughout history to answer the often puzzling questions raised by the Bible in a form of a folktale.
Many times I read the stories to my self and later tell the girls the stories from my head, adding some hand gesture and a change of my tone of voice to emphasize and create drama.
I have had long discussions with Natasha about resources. Reading straight from the bible seems like not such a great idea for kids. We both felt that it is hard to find well written stories of the bible both in English and in Hebrew.
I have compiled a list of books that was recommended by Natasha and some I found my self in my MATZO SOUP AMAZON BOOK STORE.If you have any other books to suggest, I will be very happy to hear about them.
One last thought before you let me go:
There is something very poetic and old fashioned about parents telling the stories of the Torah to their kids. Drawing in response to stories is a great way to have kids engage with the story while practicing their drawing skills (I wrote more about this in growing up creative). And spending time together as a family is a great Jewish value.
We are now ready to dive in. I invite you to join us on this adventure.
Thank you Natasha for helping and coming up with this great activity.
I am sure she is reading this, so if you have any questions for her or myself feel free to ask.