A Cute Shabbos Chanukah Game to Play at the Shabbos Table


By Rabbi Yair Hoffman for 5TJT.com

To enhance the Shabbos Chanukah table, YWN and 5TJT.com are giving readers this Shabbos Chanukah game to play at the table.  Feel free to print it out before Shabbos and play it.

One can divide the guests and family into females versus males and pit each against each other.  Since it is multiple choice, the teams do not have to fairly divided.  You can have a Brisk Kollel guy on one side, and a 5th grader on the other side.  One method of playing is to appoint a captain for each side.  The first person on the entire team to raise their hand, must answer the question as soon as the and is raised.  If it is wrong the question automatically goes to the other team.  The captain of the other team chooses who on his or her team can answer the question.  This helps empower that captain too.  After the first question is answered, the other team answers the next question and it goes back and forth.

For example, it is possible to answer your teams question, and then the other team’s question (after that team answered incorrectly) and then it be your team’s question again.

Another option is to have the captain can choose either a parsha question or a Chanukah question.

The winning team can get double desserts or another prize.


Rav Chaim Kanievsky on Chanukah

  1. Q: I once heard in the name of a certain Gadol that a Kollel member who is learning Torah in the Beis HaMidrash – it is preferable that he not stop his learning, and his wife should light at home in his stead. Should one conduct himself in such a manner?

A] One should conduct himself such. B] One should not conduct himself such.  C] Either way D] If he is truly never mevatel then he should do so..

  1. Q: On Shabbos Chanukah – when it is already 30 minutes after Tzeis HaKochavim is it permitted to utilize and benefit from the Chanukah lights?  Or do we say that since it was Muktzah during Bein haSHmashos one cannot benefit?

A] One may benefit B] One may not benefit C] Mutar but hamachmir tavoh alav bracha

  1. Q: What was the custom of the Chazon Ish’s house on Motzei Shabbos Chanukah? Did Havdallah come first or did he light first?

A:  Havdallah first and then he lit. B] He lit first then Havdallah C] He switched off when there were two Shabbosim – the first he did chanukah licht first. D] He switched the first he did havdallah

  1. Q: According to the custom of those who light first then do Havdallah, should the wife also recite Boruch HaMavdil before her husband’s lighting?

A]  It is worthwhile that she do so. B] No, it will create a safek for her havdallah later

  1. Q; May one light the Chanukah lights with oil that is Shviis?

A: It is forbidden. B] Yes, mitzvos lav lehanos nitnu

  1. Q: It has been publicized in the name of Rav Chaim that if a person is in the hospital during Chanukah Rachmana litzlan, and he wishes to light Chanukah candles where he is, but the hospital policy is to forbid it, that he light with a battery operated flashlight. Is this statement accurate that one can do so with a battery-operated electric flashlight?

A:  Chas vechalilah B This is what they say in the name of the Chazon Ish zatzal.

  1. Q: The new floating wicks that exist in our times that the wick is covered with wax – does this lower the quality of the lighting with olive oil, since when the wicks are lit – it is fueled by the wax , and only afterward is it fueled by the olive oil and the essence is during the time of the lighting? Or is there no concern here.

A: One should NOT do so..  B] It is a safaik.  C] It does not lower the lighting quality

  1. Q: Why is the Mitzvah of Chanukah different than other Mitzvos – where there are different levels of observance – such as Mehadrin min haMehadrin – something we do not find regarding the other Mitzvos?

A] Because there were two Nissim – the oil and the nitzachon   B] It is because the entire miracle happened because of a hidur – a higher level of observance – since Tumah is permitted for a public use.

  1. Q: The Gemorah tells us in Shabbos 23b: Rav Huna says that a person who is ragil b’ner will get children who are Torah scholars.  Yet we see many good and proper people who are careful in every aspect of the laws of Chanukah and even do mehadrin min hamehadrin, and yet they do not merit sons who are Talmidei Chachomim!

A] They would have been much worse – like the misyavnim  B] :  The person should have exerted more oversight on his child’s Chinuch than he did.  He is himself [a bit] at fault.

  1. Q: In the matter of giving Chanukah gelt, it is said that the Steipler zatzal (Rav Chaim Kanievsky’s father) only gave it on a certain day of Chanukah. Is this true?  What day was it and why did he do so?

A:  He gave it on the  3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th day of Chanukah.  The reason is that it never falls on Shabbos.

  1. Q: Is there an inyan to study for himself and to teach his children on the days of Chanukah, the miracles and marvelous events that happened to our forefathers in the times of the Maccabbees that re cited in the book of Yossifun etc. or should he continue in his normal method of learning.

A] We learn the halachos of Chanukah. B] Yes, there is an inyan

  1. Q: In the Chassidish Sforim the custom is discussed of playing with dreidel during these times. Is it proper to do so with one’s children or should one refrain from doing so?

A: Yes, we should keep all the minhagim of chanukah B] No – it teaches holelus and bitul Torah Chanukah is kodesh kodashim C] Whoever does so, does so.

  1. Q. The Chashmonayim lasted for how many generations? 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
  2. Q: Who was the first who repeated the statement of Moshe Rabbeinu, Mi Lashem Ailie? Matisyahu, Yehudah, Elazar, Yochanan? His five sons took over for him.
  3. How many years ago did Chanukah occur? 2184 2284 2384 2084
  4. The Raavad’s son known as the Ri, however, writes that one should preparae the Menorah as well as the oil 2,3,4,1 day(s) before the holiday (cited in Sukkas Chaim quoting Kovetz Moadim).
  5. How many times is the nais Chanukah mentioned in the Mishna? A] 1 b] 2 c] 3 d] NOTA
  6. Which is preferable to say? A] “a lichtigen Chanukah – a light-filled Chanukah” B] a “freilichen Chanukah – a happy Chanukah.” C] Chanukah Sameach – a happy Chanukah and why?

Sameach is the Notrikun (abbreviation) of Shabbos, Milah and Chodesh. These are the three areas in which the Seleucid Greeks limited Jewish religious practice.  This was pointed out by the Gerrer Rebbe.

  1. We are also not permitted to fast on these days. Fasting makes one sadder, too, and this is not permitted on Chanukah. What about fasting before Chanukah?

A] Muttar B] Assur C] Machkes

Tosfos (Taanis 18a “Rav”) writes that one may fast beforehand as these halachos were, in fact, negated even though Chanukah and Purim were not.  This is the Rambam’s opinion as well, and that of the Tur and the Shulchan Aruch.  The Rif (Megillah 4a ), Ran, and the RaZah (cited by the Bach in OC 686), however, are stringent.  The Pri Chadash is also stringent, disagreeing with the Shulchan Aruch.

20] There is a prohibition to perform work within thirty minutes of candle-lighting time (See 672:10).  What type of work or activity is forbidden?   Anything that can cause one to continue. Rav Elyashiv explained (Kuntrus Hilchos Chanukah page 6)  that even cooking or baking during this time is forbidden for someone who has an actual obligation to light.  The reason why this is more stringent than Chol HaMoed is because the reason for this prohibition is on account of…  A]  Chshada B] This is entirely derabanan and kol haover bedivrei chachomim yenashcheno nachas.. C] Pirsumei Nissa – publicizing the miracle. D] NOTA


Miketz Questions   All Answers should be according to Rashi. (NOTA means none of the above.  Also, Do not say the numbers 41: etc). Questions were adapted from Aish.com website and multiple choice answers were added.


  1. What did the fat cows being eaten symbolize? A] 41:4 – That all the joy of the plentiful years would be forgotten. B] that the good years would provide food for the bad years. C] NOTA
  2. How did Pharaoh’s recollection of his dream differ from Nevuchadnetzar’s recollection of his dream? A] Pharoah had a mistake in it, Nevuchadnetzar’s did not B] Nevuchadnetzar’s had a mistake – Pharoah’s did not C] 41:8 – Pharaoh remembered his dream but didn’t know its meaning. Nevuchadnetzar forgot the contents of his dream. D] NOTA
  3. What was significant about the fact that Pharaoh dreamed repeatedly? A] It showed it was pikuach nefesh for the nation B] 41:32 – It showed that the seven good years would start immediately. C] NOTA
  4. What does “Tsafnat Panayach” mean? A] He sees bread and how to get it B] 41:45 – He who explains things that are hidden and obscure.
  5. What happened to the Egyptians’ grain that was stored in anticipation of the famine? A] It was given to Pharoah in the first year of the famine B] It was given to Pharoah in the 3rd year of the famine C] It was given to Pharoah in the 6th year of the famine D] 41:55 – It rotted.
  6. What did Yosef require the Egyptians to do before he would sell them grain? A] 41:55 – Become mila-ized. B] Stop avodah zarah and believe in One G-d C] All of the above D] NOTA
  7. Did Yaakov and his family still have food when he sent his sons to Egypt? If yes, why did he send them? A] No  B] 42:1 – Yes, because he wanted to do chessed with having more C] Yes, because he did not wish to lose zechusim D] Yes, because he did not want to cause envy in the eyes of others who had no food.
  8. What prophetic significance lay in Yaakov’s choice of the word “redu” � “descend” (and not “lechu” � “go”)? A] It hints to B’yitzchok – signifying that Avrohom’s children will be through his father – beyitzchok is same gematria of redu B] 42:2 – It hinted to 210 years that the Jewish people would be in Egypt C] AOTA D] NOTA
  9. Why does the verse say “Yosef’s brothers” went down to Egypt (and not “Yaakov’s sons”)? A] Because they were still brother’s in their hate of Yoseph B] 42:3 – Because they regretted selling Yosef and planned to act as brothers by trying to find him and ransom him at any cost. C] Both reasons D] Neither reason
  10. When did Yosef know that his dreams were being fulfilled? A] When his brothers came before him B] When Shimon was placed in jail C] 42:9 – When his brothers bowed to him. D] NOTA
  11. Under what pretext did Yosef accuse his brothers of being spies? 42:12 – They entered the city through _______ 8,10,11,12 gates rather than through one gate.
  12. Why did the brothers enter the city through different gates? A] so that they would not suspect that they are spies B] So they would not think they are trying to conquer C] 42:13 – To search for Yosef throughout the city. D] NOTA
  13. Who was the interpreter(s) between Yosef and his brothers? A] His son Ephraim B] 42:23 – His son Menashe C] His sons Ephraim and Menashe D] An Egyptian
  14. Why did Yosef specifically choose Shimon to put in prison? 42:24 A] Because he was the one who cast Yosef into the pit and the one who said, “Here comes the dreamer.” B] to separate him from Levi, as together they posed a danger to him. C] Either of the above D] NOTA
  15. Was Shimon was released from prison after his brothers left? A] No, because he needed a greater kaparah B] Yes 42:24 – The verse says Shimon was bound “in front of their eyes,” implying that he was bound only while in their sight.
  16. What was Yaakov implying when he said to his sons: “I am the one whom you bereaved?” a] 42:36 – That he suspected them of having slain or sold Shimon B] that he suspected them of having slain or sold Yoseph C] A and B D] NOTA
  17. How did Reuven try to persuade Yaakov to send Binyamin to Egypt? A] he said – we will all die if we don’t bring him B] 42:37 – He said: “Kill my two sons if I fail to bring back Binyamin.”
  18. How long did it take for Yaakov and family to eat all the food that the brothers brought back from Egypt? Give the answer in terms of travel time. A] 43:2,10 – The travel time that it took to and from Mitzrayim B] Twice the travel time to and from Mitzrayim. C] 3 times the travel time to and from Mitzryim D] Half the travel time it took to and from Mitzrayim
  19. How much more or less money did the brothers bring on their second journey than they brought on the first journey? Why? 43:12 – a] Twice as much, in order to repay the money they found in their sacks. B] Three times as much, in order to repay the money they found in their sacks and to buy more even if the price had doubled. C] Four times as much, in order to repay the money they found in their sacks and to buy more even if the price had tripled. D] The same
  20. Did the brothers defend themselves against the accusation of theft? A] No. B] Yes, 44:8 – They said “We returned the money we found in our sacks; can it be that we would steal?”

The author can be reached at yairhoffman2@gmail.com