Photo Credit: Rabbi Yisroel Juskowitz

Title: What Does Israel Mean to Us? Explaining to Your Tweens Israel’s Significance and Moral Standing
By: Yisroel Juskowitz



What a magnificent feat! Rabbi Yisroel Juskowitz has managed to beautifully succeed in doing what seems to be almost impossible. He clearly explains Israel’s significance as well as the ongoing situation in Israel – in a way that children can understand. There is a great need for this book, for both Jewish and non-Jewish children.

Rabbi Juskowitz simplifies what appears complex in an engaging and compassionate narrative. Amazingly, the questions that pop up in the reader’s mind while reading What Does Israel Mean to Us are invariably voiced through the daughter in the book. And I have never read responses as clear and comprehensible as those the father thoughtfully provides.

This book deals with the great challenge we all face in grasping what is currently happening to the Jewish people. The author demonstrates the rare talent and sensitivity needed to lift the veils of confusion and elucidate both our spiritual and historical connection with the land of Israel from ancient times through the present.

Children, especially, thrive on getting clarity. That’s why What Does Israel Mean to Us is a treasure. Current events become less frightening when young people can navigate them with a broader outlook. When provided with understanding, they are empowered to move forward and respond more productively.

There is one more extraordinary quality about this book that I have not yet revealed – the illustrations. Rabbi Yisroel Juskowitz is an artist so exceptional that every single page in this book is a stirring work of art that could stand on its own. Each is a realistic and powerful experience to absorb.

My grandchildren are mesmerized by each page. “How is this possible to do?” they keep asking. History comes alive, entering the heart in a touching and enduring way through the masterful depictions found within.

What Does Israel Mean to Us is designed for tweens. It reflects Rabbi Juskowitz’s recent interactions with his own children of that age, successfully assisting them at this pivotal time in our history. I actually believe that even those from age seven and up can benefit greatly from all that this gift of a book has to offer. Adults will find it immensely valuable too. I hope that it will be enjoyed in homes and in schools throughout the world – enlightening us all.

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Bracha Goetz is the Harvard-educated author of 41 Jewish children’s books and a candid memoir for adults about her journey to joy in Judaism. Her newest picture book release is “The Courage Club,” and you can find all her books at and in your local Jewish bookstore.