Does your Passover haggadah need an update? This author thinks so

The Hug-it-Out haggadah, by Toronto teachers Pearl Richman and her daughter Maxie Richman, reframes how seders should be places of acceptance and inclusivity. (The Haggadah Collective)

As Jews around the world prepare for Passover, beginning April 5, one retired teacher is proposing a new way to welcome young people into the seder ritual. Pearl Richman is particularly concerned that many traditional haggadot books start the reciting of the Passover story by referring to four types of curious children: wise, evil, simple and the child who doesn’t know how to ask.

Richman and her family have created two new haggadot that use more modern, inclusive and accepting language, designed for modern families. They honour refugees, children murdered in the Holocaust, terror victims in Israel and Jews who identify as LGBTQ, like Richman’s own daughter, Maxie. After their main haggadah rewrite in 2019, Maxie, a Jewish school teacher in Toronto, helped co-write a kids’ version of the inclusive haggadah, called Hug-it-Out.

Richman’s collection of made-in-Canada Passover items are being sold at Jewish museums and retailers around North America (and are featured in The CJN’s new glossy magazine, coming out for Passover). Richman joins The CJN Daily to explain how her 94-year old mother inspired them to jump into the Judaica business.

What we talked about

  • Learn more about Pearl Richman’s Judaica collection The Haggadah Collective
  • Read why Pearl and Maxie wrote their Haggadah for kids in The CJN
  • Sign up for the Murray Foltyn bone marrow swab to save his life with Ezer Mitzion


The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Zachary Kauffman is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network. To subscribe to this podcast, please watch this video. Donate to The CJN and receive a charitable tax receipt by clicking here.