The term "mitzvah" in biblical Hebrew meant a command or commandment. It is used in this sense today, but more widely "a good deed." When Jews do a mitzvah, they do something nice, praiseworthy, considerate, thoughtful. Sunby and Heiman's delightful, funny, and wise book, with Laurel Molk's host of pictures of likeable animals in playful vignettes, is designed to teach young children examples of good deeds and the warm feeling of a mitzvah.
We see, for example, monkeys teaching that it is a mitzvah to welcome new friends, bears showing the mitzvah of sharing food with the hungry, deer helping someone who is older, beavers forgiving mistakes, kangaroos placing bottles in recycle bins, donkeys returning lost objects, and many other animals with whom children can identify discussing a host of good deeds, such as the mitzvah of charity and peace. Children will enjoy this book, find it fun, and try to imitate the animals in it.
Dr. Israel Drazin is the author of eighteen books, including a series of five volumes on the Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible, which he co-authors with Dr. Stanley M. Wagner, and a series of four books on the twelfth century philosopher Moses Maimonides, the latest being Maimonides: Reason Above All, published by Gefen Publishing House. His website is http://booksnthoughts.com.
The views expressed in this review/article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Jewish Eye.
Let Your Fingers Do the Mitzvos, by Bracha Goetz.
Put your fingers through the holes of this adorable board book and the mitzvos come to life! Arms, hands, fingers, legs ... discover how your whole body can be busy doing mitzvos with this one-of-a-kind book!
The Mitzvah Project Book, by Liz Suneby and Diane Heiman.
Making Mitzvah Part of Your Bar/Bat Mitzvah... and Your Life. This inspiring book is packed with ideas to help boys and girls connect something they love to a mitzvah project or tikkun olam initiative they can be passionate about.