This week really starts the saga of Yosef (Joseph), one of Yaakov’s sons. We see him being favored by his father and offered a coat of many colors, which then contributes to the brothers deciding to kill him (in addition to his own ill-advised words)–only they sell him to a band of people going by. Eventually, Yosef is sold into slavery in Egypt, where he refuses the advances of his master’s wife, is falsely accused, and is thrown in jail. There, he interprets dreams for fellow prisoners, something which will come in handy later… (The story of Tamar is told here, too, but that isn’t something we’re really looking at this week. It has lots of more grown up issues!)
Links: Here are the Aish, Torahtots, Torah.org, and Chabad pages on Vayeshev. Here are some coloring sheets, a parsha song, and a fun video from Itche Kadoozy (my older boys love this silly series). Here is a link to Parsha activities.
Make a colorful dish (like Yosef’s coat) for your table, like this 7 layer cake/cookie!
Make a colorful coat for Yosef out of a coffee filter and food coloring – see photos and instructions here.
Use the opportunity to talk about jealousy (like the brothers when they see Yosef’s coat) and the importance of our words and tone (like Yosef’s unkind and thoughtless speech) as it arises his week. (Come on, you know it will!) Oh, and resisting temptation. And judging favorably. Lots of good lessons here!
Some other ideas here at hands on the parsha
I’ll add more as I see them – let me know if you have a good resource!