Opening Activity For Jerusalem Day - פעילות פתיחה ליום ירושלים

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Resource Type: Peula in: English
Age: 10-12
Group Size: 10-40
Estimated Time: 45 minutes

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Resource Goal
  1. The Chanichim will get more knowledge about Jerusalem.
  2. The Chanichim will understand the importance of the KOTEL as a holly place for the Jews.
  3. The Chanichim will understand the importance of Jerusalem and it spiritual specialty.
  4.  The Chanichim will understand what the special day for Jerusalem mean.

Required Props & Materials

·        Colorful Pictures of places in Jerusalem (see “Pictures of Yerushalaim” – slideshow)

·        The history of Yerushalaim – slideshow ( optional)

·        The trivia Game – slideshow (optional)

·        The timetable - attachament


Resource Contents








brain storm

Pictures of Yerushalaim (optional)

5-10 min.


The history of Yerushalaim  - match the timetable                    

Timetable sets

10 min.


The significance of Yerushalaim - always on my mind…



10 min.



A note for the Kotel & a Trivia game

Empty Notes (one for each kid).

The game slideshow

20 min.


The Activity steps


Part 1 – brain storm


Ask the chanichim what they know about Jerusalem (best to write their answers on a board / paper block).

You can do the same in a different way – show the chanichim different pictures of places in Yerushalaim/ ask them to pick one that represent the meaning of Yerushalaim for them.


Jerusalem is a very old city. In 1996 we celebrated Jerusalem 3000, the 3000th anniversary of its founding.


Part 2 – match the timeline


-         What do we really know about the history of Jerusalem?

Split between the dates and the period – see attachment below (best to refer only to the periods with the explanations).

Divide the chanichim into 2 groups. Give each of it set with mix dates & periods names. 

Now ask them to organize the timeline as fast as they can in the right order.




-         Ask the chanichim to tell about the periods (if they know). Add from your own

(according to the attachment file).

-         What the meaning of Yerushalaim to the Jewish nation in the different periods? Why?

-         What made Yerushalaim so special in the first place?






Chazal (the Sages) teach us that Yerusalaim has a history going back to the ‘Akeidah’( Binding of ystzchak), which happened on what will be ‘Har Habait’-Temple Mt.  (On Mount Moria), and even back to the creation of the world ( the ‘G’mara’ quotes an opinion that when the world was created it “grew” out of Yerushalaim). In the time of the ‘Mikdash’, Yerushalaim housed the ‘Beit Hamikdash’, the center of the Jewish people’s religious & national life. The ‘Beit Hamikdash’ was the holiest place in the world, and therefore Yerushalaim was the holiest city in the world. But the ‘Beit Hamikdash’ was destroyed 2000 years ago…

-         Why is Yerushalaim still, as it has always, the most important city for the Jews?


Part 3- always on my mind…


 Have the chanichim sit down in a circle. The madrich starts telling a story and speaks for twenty-five seconds, including the word Yerushalayim or Beit Hamikdash in his story (you can add words that connect to Yerushalaim). He then picks one of the chanichim to continue the story, which also gets 25 seconds to speak (timed by another madrich) and he must use the word Yerushalayim/Beit Hamikdash in the story too. Try to make the story as crazy as possible.  The madrich stops the kid when his time is up and has him pick another chanich to continue.


Afterwards, ask the chanichim if their repeating of the word Yerushalayim made them think of Yerushalayim at all. Then compare what you just did with them to what they say in davening. Ask the chanichim when Yerushalayim is mentioned in Tfilah? The fact that we say “V’Liyerushalayim Ircha” and “Et tzemach david” each day, 3 times a day, reminds us of the importance of Yerushalayim and how we should always be thinking of it and how it really is the center and focus of what Jews think about.




-         What do we do to keep Yerushalaim on our minds( daven for Yerushalaim) ?

-         Is praying the only thing there is to do?

-         Can we do other things too (read news about it, activism, visit, live there)?


Share with the chanichim how you, the madrich, keep Yerushalaim on your mind, and share any personal story you have about your experience in Yerushalaim.


Conclusion: Yerushalayim is the center and focus of our lives as Jews, therefore we should be thinking about it all the time. It is the place of the Beit Hamikdash, and where we can be closest to G-D, therefore traveling there helps us “recharge” our spiritual batteries. Even without the Beit Hamikdash, it remains our focus- we still need to keep it on our mind.


Part 4 – sum-up and a Trivia game (option as a slideshow)


A note for the Kotel


Give for each kid a small note and asked them, if you were at the Kotel now, what would you ask for yourself? What kind of noted you were putting inside the holes?

Give each of them to participate; it is better to make it as a round (to make sure that everybody will participate).



Yerushalim is called “the Eye of the Universe”-

-         What do you think this mean?


A trivia Game


1.      how many name does Yerushalaim have?

a.      Jerusalem has 70 different names,As Mentioned in a Midrash written by our Great Rabbis.

b.      Jerusalem has 100 different names, By counting all the names mentioned in the Bible.


2.      How many times is the Word ירושלים  mentioned in the Tora?

a.       336 times!

b.      Not even once!


3.      when was Jerusalem declared as the Capitel of Israel?

a.       In 1948, right after the declaration of Independence Of  Israel.

b.      In 1949 After the end of the Independence war.(it was changed from Tel-Aviv)


4.      What is the largest city in Israel (population)?

a.       Tel-aviv

b.      Yerushalaim


5.      how Many Gates are there in the old city's wall?

a.      8 but one of them is blocked.

b.      12 one for each tribe of Israel.


6.      Through which gate do we believe the Mashiach will come?

a.      The Golden gate.

b.      The Dung gate.


7.      Through which gate did the paratroopers enter Yerushalaim in the six  day war?

a.       The zion Gate.

b.      The Lion Gate.


8.      How many quarters are there in the old city of Yerushalaim?

a.       3: Muslim, Jewish, & Christian.

b.      4: Muslim, Jewish, Christian & Armani.


9.      why is it called Yafo gate?

a.      Because it Faces the Direction of Yafo.

b.      Because the money to Build this gate was donated by the Jews of Yafo.


10.  What is the First time in the ת"נך,  that ירושלים  is mentioned?

a.      The story of עקדת יצחק (the sacrifice of Itzhak)  occurred in ירושלים (Mount Moria).

b.      When Avraham moves to Israel, He settles in ירושלים!  


11.  How many rows of Stones are there in the Kotel?

a.      45- 28 stones above the floor, 17 under ground.

b.      28- 12 from the older Period(the big rows),16 were recently added.(the smaller rows).


12.  Where did the center of  the Jewish life shift after  the destruction of the second temple?

a.      To Yavneh.

b.      To Tzfat.


13.  What is the object: Jerusalem of gold? 

a.    It’s a necklace Rabbi Akiva bought his wife Rachel.

b.    It’s the name of a song written by Naomi Shemer.



Don’t forget to make the connection at the end:

Next week  we will have the Jerusalem day.

It is very important to make the connection, tell the Chanichim that during this week we will have Jerusalem day. The Hebrew date for it is כ"ח אייר.

Explain the kids that we did not have all Jerusalem, right after we won in the independence war on 1949, the Jordanians conquered it. It took 19 years until we succeed, during the 6 days war on 6/1967) to liberated Jerusalem back.


Tell them about the “Yerushalaim concert”, their subject and their rule in it.

Now do the “subject peula” and then start the rehearsal for the play.


Jerusalem - Timeline

-1800 *            age of the patriarchs

                        The Binding of Ysaac on Mount Moria

-1550               Jebusite Rule

                        The Jebusite city

-1000* King David’s reign

                        Capital of the United Monarchy

-960     *          King solomon’s reign

                        Building of the Temple

-620                 The Prophet Jeremiah

                        The spiritual struggle

-586     *          Destruction of the First Temple

                        The burning of the city

-538     *          The return of Zion and the 2nd Temple period

                        “We were as dreamers...” – Koresh Declaration

70        *          The Destruction of the 2nd Temple


132                  Bar Kokhba revolt

638                  The early arab era

1099    *          From the Middle Age to the Modern era

1882    *          The ‘first Aliyah’ to land of Israel

1948    *          The state of Israel

                        The divided city- the city of David in enemy territory

1967    *          The six days war

                        The liberation of Jerusalem

I attached more historical details for you, the Madrich, about “yom Yerushalaim” ( just in case …)

: Jerusalem Day (Hebrew: יום ירושלים, Yom Yerushalayim) is an annual Israeli national holiday celebrated on Iyar 28 (כ"ח באייר).

It is primarily celebrated by secular and national-religious (religious Zionist) Israelis and Jews. Celebratory customs outside of Israel include saying the full Hallel prayer, dancing, and learning about Jerusalem's history; Israeli schools devote the week preceding this day to enhancing students' knowledge and understanding of the city's significance.

According to the 1947 UN Partition Plan, Jerusalem was to be an international city, not part of either the proposed Jewish or Arab state. The Jewish leadership accepted the plan, but the Arab leadership rejected it. After the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the city was divided between Israeli and Jordanian control; Jordan controlled the Old City and the Eastern side of Jerusalem, and killed or forced the Jews in those areas out. Jews were forbidden from entering Jordanian Jerusalem, including their holy sites, and most Jewish cemeteries and synagogues throughout the West Bank were desecrated.

In 1967, East Jerusalem, location of the Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site, was captured by Israel during the Six-Day War. The war ended in ceasefire on June 11, 1967.



Resource Comments

This peula has a second part call "Yom Yerushalaim- Character Peula"

Related Resources can be found under:

» All > Jewish Holidays > Yom Yerushalayim

» All > Eretz Yisrael > Places in Israel > Jerusalem

» All > History > Establishing a State 1948

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