Happy Hanukkah!

Ḥanukkah is a Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire. Hanukkah is observed for eight nights and days, starting on the 25th day of Kislev, an autumn month, according to the Hebrew calendar, which may occur at any time from late November to late December in the Gregorian calendar. It is also known as the Festival of Lights and the Feast of Dedication. The festival is observed by the kindling of the lights of a unique candlestick, the nine-branched menorah, one additional light on each night of the holiday, progressing to eight on the final night. The typical Menorah consists of eight branches with an additional visually distinct branch. The extra light, with which the others are lit, is called a shamash, Hebrew for attendant, and is given a distinct location, usually above or below the rest. Other Hanukkah festivities include playing dreidel and eating oil-based foods such as doughnuts and latkes, a potato pancake.

A  dreidel is a four-sided spinning top, played with during the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Each side of the dreidel bears a letter of the Hebrew alphabet: נ‎ (Nun), ג‎ (Gimel), ה‎ (He), ש‎ (Shin), which together form the acronym for Nes Gadol Hayah Sham – “a great miracle happened there”. The dreidel song goes like this…

English version
I have a little dreidel. I made it out of clay.
And when it’s dry and ready, then dreidel I shall play.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, I made it out of clay.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, then dreidel I shall play.
It has a lovely body, with legs so short and thin.
When it gets all tired, it drops and then I win!
Dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, with leg so short and thin.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, it drops and then I win!
My dreidel’s always playful. It loves to dance and spin.
A happy game of dreidel, come play now let’s begin.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, it loves to dance and spin.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel. Come play now let’s begin.
I have a little dreidel. I made it out of clay.
When it’s dry and ready, dreidel I shall play.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, I made you out of clay.
Oh dreidel, dreidel, dreidel, then dreidel I shall play.

Many members of the Geary County community celebrate this holiday and on behalf of Geary County Schools USD 475, Happy Hanukkah!

 

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