A Retelling of the Passover Story in Verse & Song

A Retelling of the Passover Story for Young Children by Sylvia Rouss

A long, long time ago the Jewish people were slaves in the land of Egypt. They worked very hard building pyramids for Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. They worked from early morning until late at night. They couldn’t study Torah, or go to school, or go on vacation. This made the Jewish people very sad.

One day, Pharaoh decided that he didn’t want any Jewish baby boys in Egypt. A Jewish mother named Joheved had a little baby boy. She didn’t want him to leave Egypt. She knew she would miss him. Joheved had a daughter named Miriam. She asked Miriam to help her weave a little basket. “Let’s put the baby in the basket and leave him by the riverside. Miriam, you watch him to make sure he is safe. I just know someone will find him and take care of him!”

Miriam did what her mother asked and hid behind a tree to wait for someone to find the baby. Pharaoh’s daughter came down to take her bath in the river. She noticed the little baby in the basket. “What a beautiful baby boy!” she cried. I’d like to take him home but I don’t know how to feed a baby, dress him, or even change his diaper.”

Miriam heard Pharaoh’s daughter and came out from behind the tree. “I know someone who could help you take care of the baby,” she told the princess.

“That’s wonderful!” exclaimed Pharaoh’s daughter. “Bring her to me.”

Miriam returned with Joheved who agreed to help Pharaoh’s daughter take care of the baby. Pharaoh’s daughter decided to call the baby Moses because Moses means drawn out of water.

When Moses grew up, he was very unhappy to see the Jewish slaves work so hard.  He went to Pharaoh and said, “Let my people go.” Pharaoh refused and Moses told Pharaoh, “Bad things are going to happen here in Egypt.”  God sent 10 bad things called plagues.  One plague was frogs everywhere, even in Pharaoh’s bed.  Finally Pharaoh told Moses to take the Jewish people and leave.

Moses told the Jewish people to hurry and pack. Some of the women rushed to make bread but there was no time for it to rise. Moses told them, “The desert sun will bake the bread.”  We call this bread Matzah.

Finally Moses shouted, “Is everyone ready? Let’s go!”

At last they arrived at the Red Sea.  Suddenly Moses and the Jewish people saw they were being followed by Pharaoh and his soldiers. Moses took his stick and parted the waters of the Red Sea. The Jewish people hurried across and before Pharaoh’s soldiers could follow, the waters closed up.

Finally, the Jewish people were free.

Today, we remember this story by celebrating the holiday called Passover.



 “The Land of Egypt” by Sylvia Rouss (sing to “The Wheels on the Bus”)

The Jews were slaves in the land of Egypt,

Land of Egypt, land of Egypt

The Jews were slaves in the land of Egypt

Many years ago.


Pharaoh made them work so hard

Work so hard, work so hard.

Pharaoh made them work so hard,

Many years ago.


Moses said, “Please let us go,

Let us go, let us go.”

Moses said, “Please let us go.”

Many years ago.


Pharaoh said, “You must stay,

You must stay, you must stay!”

Pharaoh said, “You must stay!”

Many years ago.


God sent plagues that numbered ten,

Numbered ten, numbered ten.

God sent plagues that numbered ten,

Many years ago.


Moses led the Jews to freedom

Jews to freedom, Jews to freedom.

Moses led the Jews to freedom.

Many years ago.