Toy Hanukkah Dreidels

Why Do We Play With A Dreidel Top?

The Dreidel Game Originated Out Of Life Or Death Circumstances. The Greek Syrians Had Tried To Convert The Jewish People To Their Own Pagan Ways. When The Jews Refused To Convert And Remained Steadfast And True To The Jewish Religion The Frustrated Greek Syrians Created Laws Against Studying From The Torah As Well As Other Ritual Observances. The Jewish People Were Compelled To Continue Learning From The Torah And Had To Devise Other Methods Of Hiding Their Studies.

The Children Of Israel Would Take The Torah To Remote Areas And Continue Their Studies. The Plan Was Not Foolproof As The Enemy Had Many Soldiers On Patrol To Make Sure The Laws Were Not Broken. The Jews Therefore Brought Along Small Tops That They Could Quickly Pull From Their Pockets And Start Spinning And Playing Games With To Disguise What They Really Were Doing In The Remote Location. This Trick Worked And They Were Able To Continue With The Tradition Of Torah Studies.

Why Do We Collect Dreidels In The Modern Day?

There Are Many Dreidel Collectors That Have Collections Of Different Dreidels On Display In Their Home Or Office. While It Is A Sweet Reminder Of How The Jewish People Worked To Continue Their Jewish Education It Is Also A Beautiful Object On Its Own. Modern Day Collectors Dreidels Come In All Different Shapes, Sizes And Materials. Judaica Artists Like Gary Rosenthal And Quest Create Amazing Works Of Art Into Their Dreidel Designs. From Molten Metals To Fused Glass, Each One Is Unique In Its Theme And Design. Whether You Are A Seasoned Collector Or Just Starting A Collection You Will Be Amazed At The Dreidels That Await You.

Why Do Dreidels Have Different Letters?

There Are Four Hebrew Letters On Each Dreidel. You Will Either See; Nun, Gimmel, Hay And Shin Which Stand For: "Nais Gadol Hayah Shahm - A Great Miracle Happened There". "There" Is Referring To Israel. Or You Will See; Nun, Gimmel, Hay And Pay Which Stand For: "Nais Gadol Hayah Poh - A Great Miracle Happened Here". "Here" Is Also Referring To Israel. The Different Versions Of The Dreidel Were Created As The Jewish People Started Playing The Dreidel Game Outside Of The State Of Israel.

How Do I Play The Dreidel Game?

To Play The Dreidel Game You Need At Least Two Players, One Dreidel And A Large Quantity Of "Small Items" Like Chocolate Gelt Coins, Nuts, Raisins Etc. Each Player Starts Off With An Equal Amount Of Small Items. Sitting In A Circle On The Floor Or At A Table, Each Player Must Put One Small Item Into The Center Before Each Players Turn To Spin.

The First Player Now Spins The Dreidel. Each Side Of The Dreidel Has A Hebrew Letter; Nun, Gimmel, Hay And Shin/Pay. Each Letter Represents A Different Action In The Game.

  • If You Land On Nun You Do Nothing And It Is The Next Players Turn. Don't Forget To Put In A Small Item Before Each Player's Turn So the Center Pile Continues To Grow.
  • If You Land On Gimmel You Get To Take All Of The Small Items In The Center.
  • If You Land On Hay You Get To Take Half Of All The Small Items In The Center.
  • If You Land On Shin Or Pay You Must Add A Small Item From Your Hand Into The Center Pile

When You Are Done Playing, The Winner Of The Game Is Determined By The Player With The Most Small Items In Their Hand. Have Fun And Spin Away!

What Are The Words To The Dreidel Song?

  • 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--Oh Dreidel We Shall Play
  • Oh, Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel--I Made You Out Of Wood--And When You Are All Ready--I’ll Play You When I Could
  • Oh, Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel--I Made You Out Of Glass--And When You Are All Ready--I’ll Play You On The Grass
  • Oh, Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel--I Made You Out Of Gold--And When You Are All Ready--I’ll Play You In The Cold