“Until One Cannot Distinguish”: The Limits of Joy and Celebration


Joyful celebrating? Merriment and festive costumes? It must be the month of Adar! Why is joy the primary emotion with which we commemorate the Purim story? In this lesson, learners will uncover the essential nature of the holiday and also learn how Purim’s mitzvot and customs enable us to celebrate the holiday with joy. (See background for teacher and the attachment below for additional information.)Thoughtful discussion prompts about what behaviors may or may not be authentic expressions of joy, as well as creative learning activities such as plotting various actions along a “acting happy to acting wildly” continuum are also featured in this resource.

The learners will:

  1. understand the essential nature of Purim and the transformative power of joy

  2. know how  the mitzvot and traditions of Purim are expressions of joy

be able to plan and implement a Purim event for the class or school that are aligned with  the joy we are meant to experience on Purim

When you click on the Jewish Education by Design resource link featured above, you will find the following educational building blocks for the creation of a lesson plan:

  1. Essential questions that get to the “heart” of the learning

  2. A hook/s to open the lesson in an engaging fashion and spark the learners’ curiosity

  3. In depth discussion questions that are designed to elicit conceptual thinking and personal reflections about the featured source/s

  4. Suggested activities that enable the students to both process and apply what was learned in a thought provoking and creative fashion

  5. A further study option/s to related materials on the JEBD site or to external links

Computer, Student Handout

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