Joyful Jewish

The Ten Commandments for young children

Posted on: 5 June, 2011

Last year we made our own “tablets of stone” for Shavuot.  I printed them, the children coloured them in, then we wiped them over with a wet teabag to give a mottled, old appearance before adding some flowers and stickers.  (Above is my daughter’s artwork.)

As a learning exercise, I included the first 10 letters of the Hebrew alef-bet ( this is how the commandments are represented in our synagogue) with the number associated with that letter, and the pronunciation of the letter.

My daughter was only 3 when I did this activity.  She a sweet little soul and I was (and still am) happy to wait until she is older before I introduce the concepts of murder, adultery and so forth, so I also re-wrote the commandments in child-friendly language, as follows:

1. There is only one God.
2. We should not make pretend gods.
3. God’s name is special.
4. Remember Shabbat is a day to rest and say thank you.
5. Listen to your parents and take care of them.
6. Do not hurt other people.
7. Love and look after everyone in your family.
8. Do not take things that belong to other people.
9. Do not say things that are not true.
10. Be happy with the things that you have.

Here’s a copy of Tablet 1  and Tablet 2, or if it’s easier, here are both on one A4 page: All 10 commandments

5 Responses to "The Ten Commandments for young children"

Thank you so much for posting! I’ve been looking for something like this for my children to create and post so that they have a daily reminder of what is most important. Thanks!

Just saw this. Perfect timing. I think we’ll be using it for a Shavuot program at shul. For sure I’ll be using at home, and we’ll either do the teabag staining or a crayon rub. Thank you for posting both versions!

[…] can read my version of the 10 Commandments, rewritten for children, here.  We did the same craft activity again this year, but I revised the printout (download it here) so […]

I teach children’s church at a Wesleyan Church in Virginia. I love to incorporate the history from the OT in my lessons. When I found this copy of the 10 Commandments, I got very excited. The children have been working on the commandments, but now they can learn to read and recognize the numbers on these tablets. This is great. Thank you.

[…] we modified them a to kid-friendly format.  Another fabulous Jewish mamaleh over in Australia rewrote them beautifully and created a coloring sheet over on her Joyful Jewish blog so we used her lovely wording.  I […]

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Fun crafts and activities for Jewish families with young children

A resource site for anyone who wants to share the joy of being Jewish with the children in their life.


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