Wednesday, December 02, 2009

I Don't Recall Any Wars Fought Under the Sea

A friend of mine has her 4yo daughter attending Hebrew school, once a month. This is something that has me anxious, as I know that I will need to enroll Pumpkin in Hebrew school too, but there are a couple of things holding me back: My own discomfort, and Pumpkin's ability to handle the information.

My discomfort stems from my own lack of Jewish education. I never attended Hebrew school, I never practiced any Jewish traditions, and I'm not very spiritual, regardless of which religion we are talking about. I was raised with the knowledge that I was Jewish, but also with the knowledge that Santa would bring me presents after I finish eating my potato latkes. That pretty much wraps it up for my religion. So what am I to do with Pumpkin now that I've married into a Jewish family who actually practices?

Well, she ain't gonna get any answers around here, that's for sure. I just don't know if she NEEDS any answers right now. She certainly isn't asking any questions. I also fear that she wouldn't pay any attention if I actually did send her to Hebrew school. She's so young, and doesn't show signs of learning the curriculum in her JK class. I've basically been thinking that it's too early for any sort of religious schooling.

This month in Pumpkin's preschool, they are doing the politically correct thing and teaching the kids about Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. They started with Hanukkah, which means that Pumpkin heard stories about Jewish people and Hanukkah celebrations. Pumpkin heard the same stories last year at the same preschool, but didn't really process them. I guess she took in a word or two this year.

The other night in the bath, Pumpkin was playing with her mermaid toys, and stated, "I don't think that Ariel likes Jewish people."

"Wha..wha..what??? That's not a very nice thing to say! Why would you say that?" I stammered, obviously unprepared.

"Well, she doesn't like people who have legs...", and continued on with her nonsensical dialogue as per usual.

I let it drop, because I know she was just trying out a sentence with the term, 'Jewish people' in it, as she had it fresh in her mind from preschool that day. It might have caused me to change my mind on the issue of Hebrew school. Obviously a few concepts from school have sunken in, and like I said above, there isn't much of a Jewish education to be found within our own home. She probably should be exposed to more dialogue about Jewish people, and stories that don't involve anti-Semitic mermaids, I think.


Chantal said...

I am pretty lax in the religious ed area as well. I am Catholic, hubby isn't anything and my kids attend public school. I am tempted to let them chose their own path. But then on occasion I think I really should do something...

Anonymous said...

Another helpful phrase to Google when I need to find your blog: "anti-Semitic mermaids"!!

lacochran said...

Anti-Semitic mermaids. *shakes head*

I can imagine sharing this tidbit with my mother and her saying "It could be! Don't be so smart!"

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