In this challenging time, many parents and guardians are looking online for meaningful activities for their children that don’t require too much prep or too many materials. Each weekday on this blog, the Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust will post an activity geared to a range of ages that guide children how to explore heritage, history, and learning through artifacts.

This activity builds on the skills of making observations and using the observations to draw inferences. Our educational approach is grounded in the idea that every object tells a story, and we encourage students to observe and infer to try to determine what story each object is telling.

Presentation Cup for Henry Rice
Gift of Joy Rice Dunkelman

Click here for a larger view of this artifact.

Have your student list objective observations (what they can see, without making any guesses or inferences). Encourage them to deepen their observations and record things they may not have noticed upon first viewing the artifact.

Next, ask your student to make inferences: what do you think this object is? Who might it have belonged to? What story is it telling?

Yesterday, we talked about charity and tzedakah. This artifact is related to those ideas.

  • What do you think this might be?
    • It looks like a trophy or cup of some kind, made of silver.
  • This silver cup was given to Henry Rice to show appreciation for his work as President of United Hebrew Charities for 25 years. As the president of the charity, he helped many people, including immigrants.
  • Henry Rice was born in Germany and came to the United States as an immigrant. As we mentioned, he was the president of a charitable organization. Why do you think he worked there? Why might charity have been important to him?
    • He may have received help as a new immigrant, he wanted to give back to others, he wanted to help new immigrants because he knew what it was like.
  • Is there a charity or cause that’s meaningful to you? What are some things you can do to support it?

We encourage you to share your student’s work with us! Please email so that we may feature it on our Museum blog!

Please note that the Museum offices are closed on Wednesday, April 15 and Thursday, April 16 in observance of Passover. We wish those of you celebrating a wonderful holiday, and we will resume posting on Friday, April 17.