My Jewish Learning

Bar/Bat Mitzvah Quiz

Traditionally, being a bar/bat mitzvah meant that one was obligated to fulfill the mitzvot, or commandments. Today, boys and girls may mark this event by leading services, reading from the Torah, or doing community service projects. How much do you know about Bar/Bat Mitzvahs?

Question 1. True or false: Humanistic Judaism has its own bar and bat mitzvah rituals.


Question 2. Who decried the materialism of bar/bat mitzvah parties?
 Rabbis in the Middle Ages
 The Orthodox rabbi, H. Pereira Mendes, in 1938
 The chief body of Reform rabbis in 1964
 All of the above


Question 3. Who had the first known public celebration of a bat mitzvah in the United States?
 Judith Hauptman
 Judith Butler
 Judith Kaplan
 Judith Plaskow


Question 4. What can parents do to help their child prepare for his/her bar/bat mitzvah?
 Coerce the child to practice his/her portion daily; be strict and never take no for an answer
 Tell the child that the service is unimportant; people are just coming for the party anyway
 Create a realistic timetable for fulfilling requirements; allow the child to set priorities and measurable goals
 All of the above


Question 5. What is the traditional blessing for a father to recite at his son's bar mitzvah?
 "Blessed is He who has now freed me from the responsibility of this boy."
 "Blessed is He who has created this sacred occasion."
 "Blessed is the Creator of the fruit of the vine."
 "Blessed is the boy who turned 13."


Question 6. The bar mitzvah ceremony dates back to
 The 14th century
 The destruction of the First Temple
 The fifth century
 The Spanish Inquisition


Question 7. True or false: In Moroccan communities, the emphasis of the bar mitzvah is more about laying tefillin, and less about being called up to the Torah.


Question 8. The Hebrew term for being called up to the Torah is


Question 9. Which of these is NOT a way for a bar/bat mitzvah party to be more socially responsible?
 Have the child donate a percentage of his/her gifts to charity
 Create reusable centrepieces and donate them after the party
 Request that guests make donations to worthy causes in lieu of gifts
 Have the bar/bat mitzvah child and his/her family arrive at the party in a limo


Question 10. The tradition of boys reading from the Torah at their bar mitzvah began in what century?
 Fifth century
 10th century
 17th century
 20th century