Accelerated Reader Program Selection
Welcome to the Belfer house, the only Jewish home in a small South Louisiana town. The celebration of Passover is coming and Toby Belfer’s best friend, Donna, is coming over to share in the festivities of the Seder supper. Donna does not know much about the celebration of the Seder because at her church they celebrate Easter. During one magical night she will experience the traditions and learn the history of the Jewish feast of deliverance.
This Passover tale recounts not only how Toby and her friend help the family prepare for the festival, but also it tells the story of how the Israelites came to freedom more than three thousand years ago. Donna comes to understand the symbols of the Seder supper, the legend of the prophet Elijah, and why Jewish people only serve certain food like unleavened bread during the celebration.
Told within the frame of a friendship between a Jew and a Gentile, Toby Belfer’s Seder is appropriate for all faiths. As the story unfolds it helps children understand the relationship between Passover and Easter. The special activities in this book include rhymes children can use for their own celebrations, an example of how to join in the search for the afikoman, and a lesson in the striking parallels between Passover and Easter. Whether teaching the faith or bridging cultural differences, this book is an entertaining way to show young readers how Passover is a festival of peace.
About the Author
Gloria Teles Pushker is also the author of A Belfer Bar Mitzvah and Toby Belfer Never Had a Christmas Tree—a Hanukkah story for children of all religions. She holds a master’s degree in education with a concentration in children’s literature and teaches children’s literature at Loyola University in New Orleans. She is a member of the National Association for the Preservation and Perpetuation of Storytelling and the Coalition for the Advancement of Jewish Education.
About the Illustrator
Illustrator Judith Hierstein holds a BA in art from the University of Iowa. She has illustrated all of the Gloria Teles Pushker titles released by Pelican. Hierstein believes that pictures should begin where the written word ends, and she encourages children to share in her love of learning about other cultures through illustrated books.
TOBY BELFER’S SEDER
A Passover Story Retold
Retold By Gloria Teles Pushker
Illustrated by Judith Hierstein
JUVENILE FICTION / Holidays & Celebrations / Passover
32 pp. 8 1/2 x 11
Full-color illustrations Glossary Bibliography