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The story of Purim is found in the Book of Esther, one of the books in the Ketuvim (Writings) section of the Bible. It is set in the land of Persia (current day Iran) at the time when Ahashverosh was king. King Ahashverosh held a banquet in the capital city of Shushan and ordered his queen, Vashti, to come and dance before his guests. She refused to appear and lost her royal position.
In the Book of Esther, we read that Purim is a time for "feasting and merrymaking," as well as for "sending gifts to one another and presents to the poor" (Esther 9:22).
Nate and his classmates are working on their Purim costumes. All the boys in his class are planning to wear superhero costumes, but Nate loves aliens and would like to dress as an alien. Reluctantly, Nate decides to dress like the other boys as a superhero -- until one of his dads reminds Nate of the Purim story.
In the Book of Esther, two women find themselves in vulnerable positions because of their gender.
Luba Proger and Leonid Khanin are a husband-and-wife team who investigate Jewish identity through art. One of their recent projects, is a very non-traditional staging of the traditional Purim schpiel, or story, which celebrates the salvation of the Jews in ancient Persia thanks to the cleverness of Queen Esther and her cousin Mordecai, who prevailed over the evil Haman, who planned to annihilate the Jews.
Watch this Shalom Sesame video with your children to learn about the story of Purim, then try some of the fun discussion ideas and activities recommended by Reform Jewish educators.
Together with your children, watch these Shalom Sesame videos to learn about how Purim is celebrated. Then try some of the discussion ideas and activities recommended by Reform Jewish educators to reinforce the lessons in the videos.