A Greener Passover

While the museum is closed the JMM team is coming together to bring some of our favorite activities from our recent family programs direct to your homes. Each collection of materials will be inspired by either one of our exhibits, Jewish History, or a Jewish holiday. All of the activities we share will be designed for families to complete together and only require supplies you are likely to already have in your home. The activities we offer will be varied from crafts, activities, games, scavenger hunts, and online story times. You can check out previous activity packs here!

~The JMM Programs Team

*New Activities 2021*

Make Music with Miriamblue and orange passover tambourines

Miriam was a prophetess and the sister of Moses and Aaron. She is known for leading a group of women in song and dance after the Israelites fled Egypt by crossing the Red Sea. With her timbrel, an instrument similar to a tambourine, she led the women in a musical celebration thanking God for delivering them out of slavery.

Create your own tambourine in honor of Miriam and the Passover story.

Supplies needed:

2 plates or cardboard cut in 2 circles

Craft supplies including colorful paper, crayons, scissors, stickets, string or ribbon

Hole punch

Shells, buttons, beads, or bottle caps to create cymbals

Download Instructions for Make Music with Miriam

Eco Elijah’s Cup

paper cup with matzah, eggs, lettuce, and jam

Each year at Passover, the Prophet Elijah is invited to the Seder meal when we open the door to him and set a place at the table with an extra cup, known as Elijah’s cup. This also serves as a way to demonstrate the Jewish value of welcoming the stranger.

Create your own Elijah’s cup using recycled and found materials to welcome Elijah to your Passover meal.

Supplies needed:

Plastic/paper cup or part of a soda or water bottle

Small cardboard tube

Craft supplies


Tap or glue


Download Instructions for Eco Elijah’s Cup

“Bezalel Haggadah,” illustrated by Maty Grunberg, 1984. Gift of Richard and Rosalee Davison, JMM 1988.63.1; Haggadah, 1924, printed in Berlin, Germany and given to Henrietta Szold while she was in Palestine. Gift of Irwin Kramer, JMM 1993.80.1; Haggadah, 1962, bound in metal, with illustrations by Polish illuminator Arthur Szyk. Reprinted from the 1939 edition, using the original plates. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Legum, JMM 1991.156.

“Why is this Night Different from All Other Nights?” This line, typically recited by the youngest person at the Passover Seder, takes on a new meaning this year as we mark Passover in new ways.

Passover, or Pesach, is a festival celebrating the freedom of the Jews from slavery in Egypt thousands of years ago. One of the main traditions during the holiday is the Seder, or communal ritual feast that involves storytelling, drinking wine, eating special foods, singing, and customs like hiding the afikomen, a piece of matzah, for kids to find.

While Passover may look a bit different this year, we hope that our collection of activities will help you celebrate and learn about the holiday in a meaningful way. We took inspiration from our Greener Hanukkah program, where we offered a series of Hanukkah crafts featuring recycled materials in conjunction with our Scrap Yard: Innovators of Recycling exhibit, to bring you a Greener Passover!

Take a look at the hands-on activities below, which each include a downloadable PDF that  outlines what supplies and materials you will need for each activity and instructions on how to enjoy the activity.

Make sure to share photos of you enjoying our crafts and activities on our FacebookTwitterInstagram, or Tumblr pages and use #MuseumFromHome!

Download the full A Greener Passover activity packet as a single pdf here.

Charoset Around the World

Charoset from around the world image courtesy of breakingmatzo.com.

This particularly delicious Passover food offers a great way to learn about how different people practice Judaism around the world. With this activity you can also explore how our eating habits impact the environment.

Supplies needed:

Recipes (available here or download pdfs below)

Ingredients for recipes (fruit, nuts, sweeteners, spices, etc.)

Basic kitchen supplies (something to chop and slice with, cutting board, bowls, measuring cups and spoons)

Download Instructions for Charoset Around the World

Download charoset recipes

Download even MORE charoset recipes

Afikomen Bag

Kindergarteners in Tehran carry home matzo they baked. Jewish Community Center Collection, JMM 2006.13.1061. Afikomen bag. JMM 1984.200.1. Baking Matzo, April 1976. JCC Collection, JMM 2006.13.1143.

This great craft can be made from almost any recycled textile, you can use the same skills to continue creating bags throughout the year.

Supplies needed:

 Old t-shirt or other  recycled fabric

 Pinking shears or regular scissors

 A hot glue gun or any kind of crafting glue

Crafting supplies such as buttons, stickers, puffy paint, etc

Download Instructions for Afikomen Bag

Greener Seder Plate 

Plastic Seder plate, c. 1975. JMM 1997.84.1. Metallic-colored pedestal Seder plate, available for purchase at Esther’s Place. Bezalel-style Seder plate, c.1930. JMM 1994.197.1.

Helping your child to make their own seder plate is a wonderful way to prepare for the holiday.  It helps to connect the child to the holiday and they love seeing their handiwork used at the seder!

Supplies needed:

Plate made using recycled materials like newspaper or cardboard

6 empty water bottles

Pieces of paper (any kind of paper will work)



Materials (felt, model magic, newspaper, etc) from around the house to create shapes of seder plate objects

Seder plate guide available here.

Download Instructions for Greener Seder Plate

Matzah Puzzle 

Fragment of matzah box, “The B.M. Co.” 1888. JMM 1990.118.1. Matzah puzzle from mommyblogexpert.com. Working on a puzzle at Baltimore Hebrew Day School. JMM 2013.52.62.

Most Jewish households will enjoy at least one box of matzah during passover, why not use the box to create a puzzle to complete together!

Supplies needed:

Box of matzah (or any cardboard food box)


Pencil or Black sharpie

Download Instructions for Matzah Puzzle 

Frog Folding 

Marsh frog, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. The plague of frogs, colored etching, courtesy of the Wellcome Library. Illustration from the “Bezalel Haggadah,” illustrated by Maty Grunberg, 1984. JMM 1988.63.1.

No Passover celebration would be complete without the arrival of frogs, why not make their visit a little more environmentally friendly this year.

Supplies needed:

Newspaper, magazine pages, or other scrap paper around the house


Green paint or sharpies

Download Instructions for Frog Folding

Keep Discovering

If you are still interested in learning more about Passover and sustainability check out some of the resources below.

Participate in an interactive re-telling of the Passover Story with this script found here.

Learn more about the Seder by reading this family-friendly Haggadah, which is like a guide for the ritual.

Listen to a story about the prophet Miriam who provided a supply of water to the Israelistes as they wandered through the desert. You can honor Miriam at your own Seder by placing a goblet of water on the table to represent Miriam’s well and remember how she gave life to the Jews by providing water:

You can also reflect on the importance of water in your own life and consider ways to protect the streams, rivers, oceans, and other bodies of water in your area. Learn about some ways you can protect waterways here.

We live in a very different time than the Israelites. While we may not be dealing with frogs or locusts, there are still troubles we deal with in our modern world. What do you think could be some examples of the 10 modern plagues, or 10 challenges our world is dealing today? How can you work to solve one of those problems?

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