Black Rock students learn culture while cooking

Lower Merion School District  |  Posted on

Black Rock student making hamentashen

Members of Black Rock Middle School’s Jewish student affinity group, Kehillah, organized a hamentashen-baking event and invited their classmates to join them in making the yummy treats for the holiday of Purim.

The students gathered after school on March 21, 2024, in Black Rock’s Family and Consumer Sciences kitchen to make the filled, triangle-shaped cookies that are meant to resemble the hat worn by Haman, the villain in the holiday story.

Purim commemorates the saving of the Persian Jews described in the biblical Book of Esther (Megillat Esther) in the fourth century B.C.E. During the reign of the Persian king Achashverosh and his Jewish wife Esther, Haman, the king’s highest official, planned to kill all the Jews in the kingdom. Esther was able to appeal to the king to save her people and Haman is punished. Purim was celebrated on March 23-24, 2024.

Students rolled out dough, cut out circles, filled the circles with their choice of chocolate, apple, cherry, raspberry or strawberry filling, and then pinched the circles into triangles.

As the hamentashen were baking, students created colorful masks and made noise with “groggers,” which are noisemakers that are used when the Purim story is read.

Of course, the best part of the event was when the hamentashen came out of the oven and the students had a chance to savor their tasty treats!

The student-run baking activity allowed Jewish students to share some of their traditions with classmates from a variety of backgrounds. It is an example of how how Lower Merion School District celebrates diversity, equity and inclusion to build a sense of belonging for all students and staff.