This is Jay:

Here is my elder buddy David:

This is Harriet:

This is Miriam:

I’m going to talk about my elder buddies.  I met them at Orchard Cove in Canton, MA.  I’m going to talk about Bar and Bat Mitzvah and what they said about it.

First I will tell you about Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. How was your ceremony? Here’s what I learned about a Bar or Bat Mitzvah Ceremony.  When you turn 13 you’re a young adult.  You don’t HAVE to celebrate or have a service to become a Bat or Bar Mitzvah.  You can have the celebration ANY time after you turn 13.  Bat Mitzvah means “Daughter of the the commandment.”  Bar Mitzvah means “Son of the commandment.” You are old enough to take on responsibilities in the Jewish community.

At Kol Tikvah students learn these things:

The blessings for wine, candle, and challah for a Friday night service

The blessing for putting on a tallit

How to put on a tallit

All the blessings for the Torah service (taking the torah out, blessings over the torah)

To chant a portion of the Torah for the week of their ceremony and chant it at the service

They also teach the congregation something they learned from this Torah portion (“D’var Torah: a Word About the Torah”)

People in your family can have important jobs during the service

Some people have a party and dance.

During the service you walk around holding the torah.

Why do people do all of this?  They do it to get better at their singing. They do it to be smart about Hebrew.  So you can be smarter in other ways: when you do Hanukkah, you can say the prayers.  When you go to someone else’s Bar or Bat Mitzvah, you can sing along.


Now I’m going to tell some things I learned from my elder buddies.

David said the most important advice on how to live a good life is to know the Torah.  

David said that kids should always be good at services.  

Miriam said to eat Kosher food.

Miriam said you should go to Shabbat services every Friday night or Saturday morning. She thinks that is important because she never had a Bat Mitzvah.  

Harriet said you should always sing along in temple when  the rabbi is saying the prayers.

Harriet said you should have a lot of Jewish friends.  

What Jay thinks about living a good Jewish life:  It is important to go to temple. You should dress up for temple. You should listen to your teachers. You should listen to your mom and dad and your family. You should go to hebrew school. You should read Jewish books. Holidays are important. Celebrating with your family is important.  Lighting candles is good.  Eating Jewish food is good too.  It is good to have a Bar or Bat Mitzvah too.