Here’s another easy mezuzah for kids to make, but this one is genuinely pretty. We used a photocopied klaf (parchment) inside the matchbox and mounted it low enough for a preschooler to actually reach.
My three-year old made this with his dad’s help, which would not have been much help, so I believe any kid can create a sweet mezuzah with these materials. The kicker is the lovely, golden Shaddai sticker (the shin with the crown), which makes the whole thing look and feel legit. The stickers come in a sheet of 48 from Benny’s Educational Toys, and the blank matchbooks come from Oriental Trading.
I must mention that playing with matchboxes is irresistible for any age, so this is a particularly hands-on craft. I organized a Matchbox Mezuzah group project for a Shema workshop last weekend at our synagogue and the parents were just as pleased to open and close and open and close the boxes….
Tape (I used blue painter’s tape)
Blank white matchbox (or used ones if you’ve got them)
Craft sticks (I used the broad, tongue-depressor size that comes in colors)
Tissue paper squares (cut from gift wrap)
Liquid starch (or white glue) in a small bowl or jar lid
Shema scroll (see previous post: Glue Stick Mezuzah for ideas about this)
- First, tape the stick to the back of the matchbox. It doesn’t matter what kind of tape because you will cover it with starch and tissue in a moment.
- Brush thin layer of starch or glue on matchbox—including over the tape—and then place individual layers of the tiny tissue paper squares everywhere except the open ends.
Keep brushing starch and affixing layers until you or your child needs to be done…
- Top with a crowned shin sticker if you have it, or any shin sticker. Or, wait until the box is dry and write a shin with permanent marker or rubber stamp.
The only trick is to make sure you don’t starch the matchbox shut. If you do, you can run a sharp knife through the seams after all is dry.