The Chalutzim - החלוצים

File details:

Resource Type: Peula in: English
Age: 15-18
Group Size: 20-35
Estimated Time: 60 minutes

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Resource Goal

Background: In this peula we are going to simulate a chalutz’s attempt to live in Israel in the 1800’s. The kids will face the same trials and tribulations that the early settlers felt, and they will have to deal with those situations.

Required Props & Materials



  • Sheets
  • Paper money
  • Board game(s)
  • Dice/tokens
  • String
  • Blindfolds
  • Obscure passages from the Rav
  • story



Resource Contents

Setup: We divide the chanichim into teams (depending on the amount of kids) and we then send the teams through five stations where in each station the chanichim will face a new challenge




Station #1-Land

As we all know the Land of Israel was populated with swamps that made it impossible for the early Jews to cultivate the land and grow fruit. Thus, the Jews faced a serious problem- how to deal with the bad land. In this games we will place teams on separate sheets, and the teams will have to figure out away to turn the sheet over (cultivate the land) without stepping off the sheet (in the swamp). The first team to do this wins. Depending on how many chanichim are there we will fold the sheets to make the appropriate size.




Station #2-lack of Funds

In the early settlements there was a constant shortage of money. Granted here and there the Baron de Rothschild would donate money to settlements, but it was not enough to cover every Jew’s needs. In this station we will have a simple board game where the teams will start with a certain amount of money, and as the game progresses they will either lose or gain money. At the end of the game the team with the most money wins. 



(Have to have essentials)




Station #3- Diseases 


One of the most imporatst setback that hindered the early settelers was the threat of malaria hat stemed form the swamp infested land. In this station we will have the chanichim perform certain taks but with some kind of deformity.

1. Three legged race: take two kids and tie their two legs together to get 3 legs. Then have them race.

2. Blindfold –blindfold a chanich and have another chanich have to lead him somewhere

3. (Drink cup water with hands behind back)

4. need more ideas




Station #4- Security


There were human threats to the yishuv such as Arabs plundering and stealing goods. Here we will play the game murder, where you get the chanichim into a circle

One player is secretly chosen by the leader to be the murderer. He can "kill" any player by winking at him. If that player sees the wink, he must "die" very dramatically. The players try to identify the murderer without being "murdered" themselves. If a player thinks he knows who it is, he whispers to the leader that person's identity. If he is right, he wins. But if he is wrong, he too must “die.”




Station #5 -Communication


Since there was immigration from different parts of the world, communication was another hurdle to get over. In this station were will set up different games to test the kids ability to communicate without conventional means.

  1. birtheday game- have all the kids line up and you have to get them in the right birthday order without them talking (we did this on retreat).
  2. We read them an obscure passage from the Rav, who writes with big words, and have them try to understand what he says (give them choices).
  3. play charades




Explanation of trials –get form Zionism Source sheets






Resource Comments


Related Resources can be found under:

» All > Eretz Yisrael > Settling The Land

» All > Jewish Holidays > Tu BiShvat

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