This is the last post of 2019!
Holidays Around the World
In the month of December we did a Holidays Around the World Unit. We discussed Christmas in many different countries as well as Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Eid al-Fitr, and Diwali. For each country we read a book to learn about the traditions of the holidays from each country, made a project, colored a picture and ornament.
The countries we discussed that celebrate Christmas are: America, England, Germany, Italy, France, Russia, Australia, and Mexico. Mexico also celebrates Las Posadas during their Christmas. We discovered that each of these countries has a Santa Claus, but the name is different in each country. Some of these countries also have other figures who bring small gifts for the children as well, such as La Bafana from Italy.
The holidays we learned about that are during the Christmas season for the countries listed above include Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Eid al-Fitr, and Diwali.
Kwanzaa is an African diaspora holiday to celebrate their African heritage. We learned African people celebrate this holiday for one week (seven days). Each day they light a candle, which represents one of the seven core principles, and receive a small gift of African heritage, which may be an item with the African flag colors.
Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday to celebrate the miracle of the candle oil lasting eight nights when there was only enough oil in the lantern to last for one night. Hanukkah is also referred to as the Festival of Lights. We learned that the holiday lasts for eight nights, and each night a candle is lit on the menorah. The students thought it was really interesting that Hanukkah is very similar to our Christmas, but yet it is very different. One way it is the same, but still different is children receive small gifts for each of the eight nights and children who celebrate Christmas only get gifts one time.
Eid al-Fitr is a Muslim holiday also known as the Festival of Breaking the Fast. The time of this holiday varies because it is determined by the visible sighting of the crescent moon of Shawwal. This holiday marks the end of Ramadan. Muslims wear their best clothes to celebrate, hang decorative lights inside and outside of their houses, and children are given a small amount of money as a gift to purchase small candies.
Diwali is a Hindu holiday also known as the Festival of Lights; it lasts five days and falls between mid-October and mid-November. Hindus use small clay lamps to signify the triumph of good over evil. These lamps are placed into decorative dishes that are painted with Rangoli designs. They also light off firecrackers to ward away evil spirits. Like families that celebrate Christmas, Hindu families enjoy time together, feasts, and exchange gifts during Diwali.
Holidays Around the World Projects
Eid al-Fitr stars (Muslim Holiday)
Along with our fun Holiday Unit this month we were able to enjoy reading with our book buddies, have a little visit from Mr. Deli, and create Gingerbread Houses with our parents or grandparents.
Gingerbread House Making
Everyone who came and built a Gingerbread House had so much fun! All the houses turned out great!
Fun Creating Our Gingerbread Houses
So Proud of our finished Gingerbread Houses!
*Mrs. Cowart & Mrs. Sandy have more pictures of other students. If you would like them please email me so I can ask them for a copy.*
Mrs. Cowart challenged all the teachers to decorate their doors for the month of December. We made our door into the door of a Gingerbread Bakery/House. The gingerbread men and women everyone created at home and sent back to school were hung on the bulletin board to go along with our Gingerbread theme.
On our last day before break we watched Charlie Brown's Christmas Special and colored some fun winter pictures.
Enjoy your holiday break and see you in 2020!