Thanks to for the info.

Lighting the Menorah

Light up when?

Right after nightfall, once it’s dark outside (aside for Friday afternoon, when the candles are lit shortly before sunset).

Light up what?

The Menorah or holder used for lighting the lights should be attractive and clean. All 8 Chanukah lights need to be lined up on the same level, but the Shamesh candle must be separate!

The preferred way to fulfill the mitzvah of lighting the Chanukah Menorah is to use pure olive oil and wicks of cotton, just like the Menorah in the Holy Temple. Nevertheless, other types of oils, wicks and candles may be used, as long as they give a steady light!


Light up where?

Some people put their Menorah in the doorway opposite the Mezuzah, while others place it near the window. We do this to spread the Chanukah light! In these places, people are sure to see your Menorah, and remember the great miracles that G-d performed.


Light up how?

We place candles in the Menorah from right to left, but we light the candles from left to right.

On the first night we light one candle on the right side. On the second night we light the new, candle first, starting from the left and moving to the right. We continue this way every night of Chanukah, adding a candle each night (see diagram on opposite page).


Follow the Leader!

The Chanukah candles cannot be used to light each other, which is why we use the Shamesh Candle to light the Menorah. It’s not one of the 8 Chanukah candles, so we set it in a place above the rest.
The Shamesh can be made out of sweet-smelling beeswax. The lights of the Chanukah candles are special – only for looking at, not for using. It is good for the eyes – and the soul!


Light up how long?

The Chanuka candles are supposed to burn for at least a half hour.
On Friday though, we have to light them before it gets dark and Shabbat comes in. We generally use more oil, or bigger candles on Friday, so that the candles will stay burning, well into Shabbat!

Menorah Calendar

Tuesday Night, Dec. 20
Blessings 1, 2 & 3

Wednesday Night, Dec. 21
Blessings 1 & 2

Thursday, Dec. 22
Blessings 1 & 2

Friday afternoon, Dec. 23
Before sunset, recite blessings 1 and 2 and kindle four lights in the menorah. The menorah should be lit before lighting the Shabbat Candles (18 minutes before sunset).

Saturday Night, Dec. 24
After nightfall, recite blessings 1 and 2 and kindle five lights in the menorah. The menorah is lit after Shabbat ends and the Havdalah is recited.

Sunday Night, Dec. 25
Blessings 1 & 2

Monday Night, Dec. 26
Blessings 1 & 2

Tuesday Night, Dec. 27
Blessings 1 & 2

Light up lingo!

Before you light the candles, make the appropriate blessings.

Before the first night of Chanukah, Tuesday night, December 20, 2011 (or the first time on Chanukah you perform this mitzvah) recite all three blessings. On all following nights, say only the first two:

1. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai E-lo-he-nu Me-lech Ha-olam A-sher Ki-de-sha-nu Be-mitz-vo-tav Ve-tzi-va-nu Le-had-lik Ner Cha-nu-kah.

2. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai E-lo-he-nu Me-lech Ha-olam She-a-sa Ni-sim La-avo-te-nu Ba-ya-mim Ha-hem Bi-zman Ha-zeh.

3. Ba-ruch A-tah Ado-nai E-lo-he-nu Me-lech Ha-olam She-heche-ya-nu Ve-ki-yi-ma-nu Ve-higi-a-nu Liz-man Ha-zeh.

Next: Which Hanukkah Songs to Sing


It is customary to sing “Haneirot Halalu,” and/or “Maoz Tzur” after lighting the Menorah.

Here is another Chanukah song we sing:

I have a little Dreidel,
I made it out of clay.
And when it’s dry and ready;
Oh Dreidel I shall play.

Oh Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel,
I made you out of clay;
And when you’re dry and ready;
Then Dreidel I shall play.

Click here to listen to Hanukkah songs.

Next: The tradition of giving money


Got Gelt?

To remember the high point of Jewish freedom, and the great victory symbolized by the Maccabee coin, many parents give their children Chanukah Gelt (money) on Chanukah. Sometimes it is given as a reward for Torah learning.

On the fifth night your luck is soaring high! It’s a special time for giving (extra) Chanukah gelt, since now the majority of candles on the Menorah are lit.

Chanukah Gelt comes in handy to give a little extra charity. Invest in a worthy cause. Chanukah is a special time to give lots of charity. This shows that we are truly grateful to Hashem for all that He has done for us. (On Friday we give charity before candle lighting.)


Hanukkah Games:

Next: Let Your Children Help Make Potato Latkes!




-Peel potatoes and onion.

-Grate potatoes and onion into a large bowl.

-Crack eggs into a glass. Check to make sure
there are no blood spots!

-Add egg, salt and pepper to the potato and
onion mixture, and use a wooden spoon to
mix it up!

-Ask your adult assistant to help turn on
the stove.

-Pour enough oil into the frying pan to cover
the bottom of the pan.

-Use a large spoon to carefully place spoonfuls
of batter into the pan. Be careful – the oil is

-Let the latkes fry for about 5 minutes on a
medium flame.

-Ask your adult assistant to help turn the latkes
over using a spatula. Let the latkes fry for a
few more minutes, till they’re nice and brown
on both sides.

-Ask your adult assistant to help take out the
latkes and place them on a plate to cool.

-Serve with applesauce and enjoy! Don’t forget
to make a blessing!

BLESSING: Baruch Atoh Ado-nai Elo-heinu Melech Ha-olam Borei P’ri Ha’adoma.

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