The Family (and Frog) Haggadah

Behrman House  2017


The Family (and Frog!) Haggadah is a fun take on the traditional telling of the Passover story. With lists to help participants prepare for the seder and activities to engage all ages, not to mention a cute illustrated frog, children, young and old, and their families will enjoy this Haggadah. Thoughtfully, the authors chose to use a frog as a symbol of transformation. Just as a frog changes from a tadpole to an amphibian, during Passover we share the story of how the Israelite slaves were transformed into a nation.

Throughout the book, “Frog,” pops up on the pages with silly puns, interesting activities and cute games. For example, while searching for chameitz, the unleavened products Jews are supposed to dispose of before the start of the holiday, the illustrated Frog proclaims, “I found some toadst.” He also introduces “Game Time,” including puzzles and word scrambles (with answers in the back). Additionally, there are boxes encouraging participants to “Think About” or “Try This” and “Did You Know?” The extension activities are thought provoking on many levels.

In addition to the spunky Frog illustrations, this Haggadah includes all sorts of images relating to Passover, from historical reproductions to cute contemporary puppets representing Passover symbols.

The only concern about this Haggadah is the usefulness of one extension activity, a “Try This!” activity. “Take turns passing around a mirror, and have participants look into it and visualize themselves as a slave.” Despite the connection to the tradition of using a mirror as an educational device for children to emphasize the concept that we are supposed to see ourselves as participants in the Jewish people's liberation from slavery, this activity seems to minimize the slave experience and may seem disrespectful. However, it would be easy enough to skip it. Overall, The Family (and Frog!) Haggadah would be a fun and engaging book to use at a family seder. Highly recommended for family use.

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