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DANCE, SING, REMEMBER by Leslie Kimmelman


A Celebration of Jewish Holidays

by Leslie Kimmelman & illustrated by Ora Eitan

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 31st, 2000
ISBN: 0-06-027725-4
Publisher: HarperCollins

Organizing according to the Jewish calendar, Kimmelman describes Jewish religious holidays, Israeli national holidays, and the observance of the Sabbath. Each holiday identified includes its name in English and Hebrew, a brief description of its meaning, and a recipe, an activity, or a bible story related to it. The brevity of some of the explanations omits some essential information. Rosh Hashanah is the first holiday in the Jewish New Year, but Kimmelman neglects to define the Jewish year. The section on Sukkot mentions, “we shake the lulav” in a description of holiday activities, but there is no clear definition in words or illustration of the lulav. In describing matzah, Kimmelman does not make the connection about why the Israelites could not wait for bread to rise and prepared matzah instead. Illustrations sometimes do not adequately illustrate the text. A person unfamiliar with a sukkah, the hut constructed for eating meals during the holiday of Sukkot, could not tell what it looks like from Eitan’s sketchy drawing. An illustration of Moses in a basket has no reference in the text to the Passover holiday. The introduction indicates that some of the holidays are recent in origin but the text makes no clear distinction between religious holidays and historically significant modern commemorations such as Yom Hashoah, the remembrance of the Holocaust and Yom Ha-atzma’ut, Israel’s Independence Day. Written primarily for those who are already familiar with the celebrations, this title will not serve the informational needs of the general reader. (Nonfiction. 4-8)