Hanukkah, also known as the “Festival of Lights”, is a Jewish festival. Hanukkah takes place around the same time as Christmas.


Lighting the Menorah

Every night of Hanukkah, a candle is lit on the candle stick. There are 8 candles, one for each day of Hanukkah. The lamp is called the Menorah.


Once the candles have been lit, a dreidel (below) is spun, usually by children. The four Hebrew letters that are printed on each side are a Hebrew abbreviation for “A great miracle happened here.”

Different coloured dreidels at a market | By Adiel lo – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikipedia

Hanukkah gelt

Chanukkah money, also known as gelt, is given to children during Hanukkah. The amount of money given is usually in small coins. This tradition started in Eastern Europe in the 16th century where children gave some money to their teachers to thank them.


To celebrate the fact that only a small amount of oil is needed to light the Menorah, most of the food is baked in some kind of oil, usually olive oil. Traditional food include latkes (a potato pancake) and sufganiyot (jam-filled doughnuts).

Sufganiyot/jam-filled doughnuts