Omer: Counting Up at Makom

Omer: Counting Up at Makom

On any given day, our kids do a lot of counting! Kids count down until they have to transition from one activity to the next or until it is time to clean up from a day of learning. When do you notice you or your family counting down time? 

Starting on the second night of Passover, we’re presented with a unique opportunity to participate in a practice that allows us to count up towards something, in this case, counting towards Shavuot, where we celebrate the receiving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai (spoiler alert: this is what our kids at Makom are learning in their final unit of the year!) And this year, Shavuot comes right when the school year at Makom Community comes to a close. 

Counting the Omer, or Sefirat HaOmer provides us the opportunity to pause in our day and count up towards something larger than ourselves. Each day, we can say the blessing and mark time with those in our households or community. What does it mean to count up to something rather than down? 

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר קִדְּ֒שָֽׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּֽנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹֽמֶר

Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu Melekh ha’Olam asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tizivanu al sefirat ha’omer.

Blessed are you, Adonai who has sanctified us with your commandments and gave the opportunity us to count the omer. 

Want to give it a try? Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, or special grown up in a kiddos life, we invite you to give one of these activities a try to pause in your day and celebrate the amazing kids in your life. 

  • Add Counting the Omer to your bedtime routine. Each night before bed, you can count the omer as a family. (FaceTime or phone calls work too!) Feel free to come up with a question to ask each night too! Maybe it is a question you have about the Torah in anticipation of Shavuot or a question you’re wondering about exploring this summer with your family as you count up towards summer break, since Shavuot and the end of the school year fall so close together.  
  • Create a resource together that allows you to mark each one of the 49 days leading up to Shavuot. It could be any document that counts 1 to 49! Feel free to check out this one from PJ Library as some inspiration. As we reach Shavuot, reflect on what it means to try something new for 49 days! 
  • Do you like to garden or grow things? What fruits or vegetables could you plant and watch grow over the 7 weeks? How might you observe and reflect on  how they are growing each night when you countof the omer? If you don’t live near one of the awesome kids in your life, how can you each grow something different and check in about it?
  • Use these 7 weeks to think about what you’re trying out as a family. Maybe it is being more kind to each other or expressing gratitude together. Each week, pick a theme and reflect on it every night. How can we show up to help each other be the best versions of ourselves? 

What else might you try with your family? Email us or tag us on Facebook or Instagram to show us how you are counting! 

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