How to Make a Dreidel

What You Need:

  • White modeling clay
  • Blunt butter knife (can be plastic)
  • Short pencil or piece of dowel about 2 inches long
  • Blue marking pen

What You Do:

  1. Have your child form a piece of modeling clay into a 1 1/2-cube, approximately. It may be easiest for your child to use a butter knife to cut the sides nice and flat.
  2. Ask your child take the small pencil or piece of dowel and stick it about halfway down the cube. Make sure it is as centered as possible so the dreidel spins evenly.
  3. Now your child is going to be creating the pointed end of the dreidel. Have them take another piece of clay, form it into a cone shape, and attach it to the bottom of the cube. Do your best to make sure it is firmly attached so it will stay together as it dries.
  4. Once the clay has dried, use your blue marker to make the Hebrew letters nun, gimel, heh, and shin (see photo). Let it dry and your child is ready to play!

Playing Dreidel:

Traditionally, no work is to be done while the Hanukkah candles are lit so playing Dreidel is a nice way to spend time with friends and family. Just decide on the number of rounds you will play before you begin or you will be playing long into the night!

Players take turns spinning the dreidel and collecting or giving game pieces (you can use pennies or candies; chocolate coins work great!). If a player spins an nun they take nothing, gimel they take the pot, heh they take half the pot, and shin they put one into the pot.

The player with the most at the end of the number of rounds agreed upon is the winner.

The Dreidel Song:
I have a little dreidel
I made it out of clay
And when it's dry and ready
Then dreidel I shall play.
Oh Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel
I made it out of clay
Oh Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel
Then Dreidel I shall play.
It has a lovely body
With legs so short and thin
And when it gets all tired
It drops and then I win
My dreidel's always playful
 It loves to dance and spin
 A happy game of dreidle
 Come play, now let's begin!

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