10 Christmas Education Traditions from Around the World
As Calvin Coolidge rightly said- “Christmas is not a time or a season but a state of mind” and though we might all be in a cheerful holiday mood, Christmas learning is an idea which is implemented worldwide. Christmas education traditions are widespread and have gained popularity in recent times. Here is how we can learn a little and imbibe some education traditions around Christmas.
1. “Jolabokaflod” Iceland:
We are all well aware of the winters Iceland is famous for. The Christmas book flood or colloquially known as “Jolabokaflod” can be described as an event or more appropriately a tradition where families give each other books on the Christmas eve and spend the night reading. This looks like a tradition which should be promoted and adopted by more families. It not only spreads a good vibe over the Christmas eve but cultivates in children a fondness towards reading bonded by emotional sentiments brought by the festival. The publishing industry around this time is at an advantage and mostly plans all their new releases during this time. The recently published books are listed in a document called “bokatidindi” which translates to book news and is circulated among family and friends, thus making it an education tradition.
2. Learn Family history:
In Finland, a customary visit to the gravesites at the time of Christmas to pay respect to the departed souls is a tradition followed to teach the younger members of the family about their ancestral family members. This is the type of education we need, to know our grounds better.
3. Letters to Santa:
This Christmas tradition comes all the way from Australia, where young kids are encouraged to write letters to Santa. The practise originated because of the simple reason of improving children’s handwriting and putting them in the habit of writing more. It is an education in itself to see the creativity these young minds put in words. The fact of sending a letter to Santa at the north pole is amusing in itself and educating in a way that kids learn a lot from it. It is a mind exercise accompanied by a physical task.
4. Life-saving lessons in Australia:
In Australia, it is pertinent that every child and adult should learn life-saving techniques such as the mouth to mouth resuscitation. The natives tend to spend a lot of their summers on the water, among beach waves and consider educating themselves on this aspect relatively important. And because Christmas in Australia falls in summertime, learning like this becomes highly primal.
5. School Holidays during Christmas- to be or not to be?
Christmas holiday is something everyone waits for. In most countries, it is a festive time off work and school. While it is a short winter break in most countries like the USA and UK, it is the summer break for kids in Australia which is a relatively longer holiday. A lot of parents are of the belief that religious holidays such as Christmas at schools shouldn’t be a holiday. Well, I hope that never happens for such holidays hold culture in their arms ready to embrace, especially kids.
6. Christmas lights- a charitable sight
Decorating homes and the Christmas tree is a ritual that is followed by every home. But what is wondrous to know is these decorative lights can be used for charitable purposes too. Some charitable trusts organise events revolving around this homely tradition educating the masses about the respective charity.
7. The Prediction jar
Around Christmas and New Year the game of “the prediction jar” is played in many homes. Before you start pondering over its concept and educational capabilities, here it is- every family member needs to write a prediction about themselves that they predict will come true in the new year. This is self- educating as it lets you peep deeper into your aspirations, lets you form goals for yourself and make you self -aware.
8. Bake Parties in Canada
There is no such thing as “a delicious cookie”. The more the better. Canada is so cold during Christmas, staying indoors is the only option. Bake party sounds like a fun thing to do, and indulge in some indoor learning activity. The bake party is a family tradition which involves friends collecting in someone’s home and each baking a cookie with their own personal recipe. It is a gala time for everyone enjoying the fragrance in the atmosphere and having a fun time baking and devouring cookies. One learns new recipes and ways of baking. This surely qualifies as traditional education.
9. 12 days of Christmas:
Some calendars suggest the start of 12 days of from 1st Dec until Christmas time or sometimes from the 25th of Dec until 6th of Jan. It is learning as well as counting activity for kids to count these 12 days of Christmas with an advent calendar.
10. Sweet beginnings with Les Treize in France:
Christmas is not only about enjoying the festive vibes but also about learning and experiencing new things. In Provençal French Christmas tradition, families make 13 desserts which symbolise Christ and the 12 apostles at the last supper. Each dessert is made differently which have ingredients like fruits, dry fruits and walnuts. It could also be a traditional cake called the Pompe à l’huile. The tradition also says that everyone at the table must try each dessert, which brings luck in the new year.
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