Challah Baking with Young Children

The children in Shalom Chaverim (“Welcome, Friends!” for ages 0 – 3 and their grown-ups) are enthusiastically exploring Shabbat. They spent one session preparing for Shabbat by pretending to wash dishes, sweep the floor, make soup, and set a Shabbat table. During the second session they used watercolors on cloth napkins to create challah covers. During last Sunday’s session they had the opportunity to mix ingredients into dough and make their own challah!

Some children chose to explore the sensory table filled with colorful rice, cups, small shovels, and laminated Shabbat pictures. One child excitedly moved from the sensory table to the challah-mixing station and tossed a handful of rice into the mixing bowl! Never fear: all ingredients are intentionally non-toxic in case they go into young children’s mouths. We carefully scooped out all the rice and proceeded.

Children and their grown-ups poured ingredients into a giant bowl and stirred the mixture. Then they kneaded clumps of dough on the flour-covered table. After that they could shape them, or not! Finally the challah was (mostly) baked, then packaged to take home. Special thanks to the knowledgeable and experienced grown-ups who helped!

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