September Festivals

The month of September has been a busy month of celebrations for the Jewish community. With Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot all occurring this month. At Willow Cottage we have enjoyed experiencing and exploring various aspects of these festivals. We have learnt some of the meanings behind the celebrations and how they are celebrated by some of our friends.

Rosh Hashanah – The Jewish New Year.

At Bletchingdon we enjoyed some honey cake brought in by one of our families to celebrate a sweet New Year. They spoke about the different ingredients and then cut the cake so the children could all take a piece home with them. The children had the opportunity to talk about good things we have done in the past and look forward to doing good and sweet things in the future.

“Shana Tova” – Good year.

At Eynsham, we made some delicious honey biscuits. We tried them at teatime and they were delicious.

Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur means Day of Atonement and traditionally Jews spend the day fasting and engaging in self examination. The children have been encouraged to think about things that they have done that made someone sad or that they shouldn’t have done. We talked together about how we can try to put things right by saying sorry when we get things wrong.


For the festival of Sukkot the children at Farmoor made dried fruit garlands to decorate their Sukkah (shelter). They helped build the structure from branches in the field and decorated it inside with the garlands, also hanging some from the trees in The Orchard.

Sukkot is similar to Harvest Festival and at Eynsham we have enjoyed making and trying special bread called Challah. We also had fun making a special den called a Sukkah, using blankets and big branches underneath the big slide. Then we made our own model of a Sukkah out of a shoe box using leaves and twigs that we found in the garden.

Thank you to the families from all our settings who have shared their knowledge, beliefs and the delicious honey cake. The children have certainly enjoyed having new experiences and learning about parts of the Jewish year, in comparison to the Christian calendar. As Sukkot continues into next week we wish you Chag Sameach, happy holiday.