What is a dreidel?
A dreidel is a four-sided top used in a game played during the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Each side has a Hebrew letter: nun, gimel, hey, and shin.
What do the letters on the dreidel mean?
The letters stand for the phrase “nes gadol haya sham“. It means “a great miracle happened there”. It is a reminder of the Chanukah miracles of the military victory by Macabees and the one day of Temple oil that lasted eight nights. In Israel the last letter of the dreidel is “pay” instead of “shin”, to represent the phrase “a great miracle happened here“.
How do you play dreidel?
You will need one dreidel to share or one per person and a collection of small pieces to play with. They can be pennies, chocolate coins, M&M’s, etc. Divide them evenly among the players. Have each player put one piece back into the center to create the “pot”.
Take turns spinning the dreidel and follow the instructions based on how it lands.
How do you win?
If you run out of pieces, you’re out of the game. Last player standing wins.
If you’d like to keep players from being eliminated too quickly, replenish the pot with extra pieces as you go.
How to Play Dreidel Printable
These printable instructions will help anyone new to playing dreidel and will make a great addition to an elementary school lesson plan.
Now that you’ve learned to how to play dreidel, don’t forget to learn more about Hanukkah: The Basics. Also check out my Easy Sufganiyot Recipe, Hanukkah TV Episodes for Kids, Where to Buy Hanukkah Pajamas, and Hanukkah Gifts from Small Businesses.