Ben Gurion and his time- A Quiz


To test general knowledge about Israel as well as some knowledge about
Ben Gurion and his achievements.


You can choose the questions you feel suitable for your age-group - we have included questions suitable for ages 10-18. Some of the questions come from a quiz set by the Resource Centre in Amsterdam. LIMIT THE QUIZ TO 30 MINUTES ON STAGE.


Score board, desks and chairs, microphone, question cards, stopwatch/buzzer.

Running the quiz

There are several types of questions, including "odd one out"; "guess the true statement"; multiple choice possibilities; "complete the name"; "who did what; "who said?" and you may use recordings or slides as clues in questions - in which case you need the appropriate equipment, checked ahead of time. REMEMBER TO EXPLAIN CLEARLY THE TYPE OF QUESTION EACH TIME.

You can organize the quiz in teams or by using a panel game system. We recommend that each team have a different question to answer (rather than seeing which one hands in the correct answer secretly ) as this keeps the game going at a good pace.

You can use a system where there are open questions and the team to "buzz" first gets a chance to answer or where each team has a turn and if it answers incorrectly another team gets the question. ALL THIS MUST BE CLEAR TO CONTESTANTS AND AUDIENCE OR YOU COULD WELL RUN INTO HEATED EXCHANGES. Similarly you must make clear whether all (or some) of the questions are to be answered in turn by different members of the panel (or team) or whether answers come from the whole group after consultations and bonuses.


Finally, a word about scoring. You can give each question for X points, use bonus points, or you can have a different number of points for different rounds (according to difficulty) and just add up the points.

If you want to make it more interesting, you can group the questions into subjects and grade them according to whether they are worth 10, 20, 30, 40, or 50 points and ask each team what subject they choose each time and for how many points, until you use up your stock of questions. This is a Jeopardy (Jewpardy!!) board system and takes more preparation of the questions.

Another possibility would be to name one team GALIL and one team NEGEV, give each a list of settlements and flags in their area and for each correct answer allow them to win a settlement (mark up on the large wall map)...

The Questions

A. Fun questions for points, to use in the middle of the quiz

* What would you say if you met (one personality per player)

a) Theodor Herzl; b) David Ben Gurion; c) Golda Meir; d) Chaim Weizmann; e) Yosef Trumpeldor; f) Jabotinsky; g) Moshe Dayan, etc.

* Why did Ben Gurion go to Greece and Turkey? (Then give the true answer)

* What did Ben Gurion say when he cleared out the office to retire?

B. Multiple choice questions - Which is the correct answer?

* a) The State of Israel was founded in: 1947, 1948, 1949.
Answer: 1948.

* b) The first president of Israel was: Theodor Herzl/David Ben Gurion / Chaim Weizmann.
Answer: Weizmann.

* c) When the state was declared there were: 650,000 / 1,020,000 / 250,000 Jews in the country.
Answer: 650,000.

C. Guess the truth

Show slide of Ben Gurion in early settlement in Galilee. Team A has three cards which are read out (one per person) and Team B has to guess which is the true story, e.g.,:

* B.G. and his friends were expelled from Petah Tikva as agricultural labourers and moved to a settlement in the Galil. (TRUE).

* This is a photo taken in 1949 of the first settlers who went south to the Negev to found Kibbutz Sde Boker (BLUFF)

* This was taken in Poland of Ben Gurion and his friends before B.G. left for Palestine.


* relate episodes (true and makebelieve) from B.G.'s life or about Israel and ask which is the true story.

D. More serious questions

Q. What is the Hebrew name for the Israel Defense Forces?
A. Tzahal (Tzva Hagana leYisrael).

Q. What is the name of the Israel Parliament?
A. Knesset

Q. How many members sit in the Knesset?
A. 120.

Q. Why are there 120 Havrei Knesset (members)?
A. Because there were 120 members of the Great Sanhedrin which governed Biblical Israel.

Q. Name three places in which Ben Gurion lived.
A. Plonsk, Petah Tikva, Jerusalem, Salonika, Istanbul, Sde Boker....

Q. Name two countries from which thousands of Jews came on aliya when Ben Gurion was in office:
A. Yemen, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Cyprus, France, Iraq, Syria, Aden.

Q. What is the name of Israel's national anthem?
A. Hatikva.

Q. In what years was Jerusalem a divided city?
A. From 1948 to 1967.

Q. Who wrote "The Jewish State"?
A. Theodor [Binyamin] Zeev Herzl.

Q. Who was the first Chief Rabbi of Palestine (20th century) and a great religious Zionist leader?
A. Rav Yitzhak Hacohen Kook.

Q. Who was the first Prime Minister of Israel?
A. David Ben Gurion.

Q. What is the capital of Israel?
A. Jerusalem.

Q. Where and when was the First Zionist Congress held?
A. Basel, 1897.

Q. Which Arab country has a peace treaty with Israel?
A. Egypt.

Q. Who founded the Israel Defense Forces?
A. David Ben Gurion

Q. What was the Jewish self-defence unit called before 1948?
A. The Hagana.

Q. Who said, "No state is handed to a people on a silver platter?"
A. Chaim Weizmann.

Q. Who wrote the poem "The Silver Platter"?
A. Natan Alterman.

Q. Who said, "If you will it, it is no legend?"
A. Theodor Herzl.

Q. Who declared the independence of the State of Israel?
A. David Ben Gurion.

Q. Name two Prime Ministers of Israel.
A. Ben Gurion, Levi Eshkol, Moshe Sharett, Golda Meir, Shimon Peres, Menachem Begin, Yitzhak Rabin, Yitzhak Shamir, Binyamin Netanyahu.

Q. Name two presidents of Israel.
A. Chaim Weizmann, Zalman Shazar, Yitzhak Ben Zvi, Yitzhak Navon, Chaim Herzog, Eliezer Weizmann.

Q. Explain the term "avoda ivrit".
A. Jewish labour - slogan adopted during the pioneering days meaning doing physical work and not hiring others (usually Arabs) to do it for you.

Q. To which Zionist organization did B.G. belong in Poland?
A. Poalei Zion.

Q. Which political party did B.G. co-found in 1956?
A. Rafi.

Q. Which party did B.G. join in 1968?
A. Yahad.

Q. To which party did B.G. belong originally?
A. Mapai.

Q. When did B.G. first step down as PM?
A. 1952.

Q. Where did B.G. retire to in 1953?
A. Sde Boker.

Q. When did B.G. finally retire?
A. 1970.

Q. When did B.G. pass away and how old was he?
A. 1973, aged 87.

Q. When did the UN vote for partition of Palestine?
A. 29th November, 1947.

Q. Who said "We must have a window to the Far East", and what did this mean?
A. Ben Gurion in 1948, meaning that Israel must have a southern port on the Red Sea, i.e., Eilat.

Q. What was Operation Magic Carpet and when did it take place?
A. The name given by the Yemenite immigrants to the El Al planes that brought the almost entire Jewish population of Yemen (about 50,000 people) to Israel from Yemen in the early 1950s.

Q. What was Operation Yonatan (Thunderbolt) and when did it take place?
A. Israeli commando operation to rescue Jewish hostages from terrorists at Entebbe airport, Uganda, 4th July 1976.

Q. What was Operation Moshe and when did it take place?
A. End 1984 - January 1985, rescue of Jewish Ethiopian refugess from famine and starvation through the Sudan to bring them to Israel.

Q. What is the Hebrew name for the operation in the Sinai Campaign for which Ben Gurion is famous?
A. Mivtza Kadesh.

Q. Guess the surname: David (Ben Gurion); Moshe (Dayan); Yitzhak (Rabin, Ben Zvi, Navon, Shamir...); Levi (Eshkol); Abba (Eban); Chaim (Weizmann, Arlozorov, Herzog); Zalman (Shazar); Joseph (Trumpeldor); Hannah (Senesh); Zeev (Jabotinsky); Shimon (Peres); Golda (Meir).

Q. Which Israeli PM signed the peace treaty with Egypt?
A. Menachem Begin.

Q. Which Israeli PM was once ambassador to the USSR?
A. Golda Meir (Myerson) 1948.

Q. Which Israeli PM had an airport named after him against his wish?
A. Ben Gurion.

Q. Who was the Israeli president after whom a science institute was named?
A. Weizmann Institute, Rehovot, for Chaim Weizmann.

E. Odd one out

a) Which one doesn't belong? Hint: location
Q. Naharia, Netanya, Carmiel, Caesarea.
A. Carmiel - not on the coast.

Q. Ashkelon, Ashdod, Akko, Afula
A. Afula - not on the coast.

Q. Degania, Dimona, Bet Hashita, Bet Rimon.
A. Dimona - it's in the Negev, not the Galil, and the others are also all kibbutzim.

Q. Eilat, Jerusalem, Tsfat, Beersheva.
A. Eilat - it's a port.

b) Hint: what they did

Q. Golda Meir, Shimon Peres, Chaim Weizmann, David Ben Gurion.
A. Weizmann - he was a President, the others Prime Minister.





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07 Aug 2005 / 2 Av 5765 0