This unit covers different aspects of culture. Some articles on holidays children celebrated in different parts of the world, with related crafts, recipes for food and some fun craft activities like origami.
Holidays Around the World
On November 4,1605, Guy Fawkes was caught red-handed in the basement of the British Parliament. He was trying to blow up the Houses of Parliament with gunpowder. Ever since then, on November 5, the British have celebrated his capture and execution by burning an effigy (model) of him on bonfires around the nation. Learn more about why he wanted to blow up Parliament, how he was caught and the celebrations.
Falling on November 11, German children celebrate St Martin’s Day as the start of Carnival season. They walk around the streets, after dark, carrying lanterns, and singing special songs. A bit like trick or treating, they are rewarded for their singing and the beauty of their lanterns, with sweets and other goodies.
This is a North American Holiday.
Celebrated in November it remembers the original Thanksgiving. On that day the
Pilgrims gave thanks for their survival, which was largely due to the help
they received from the Native Americans.
Kwanzaa is a fairly new holiday. It is an
African American Holiday, intended to maintain cultural heritage. It is
celebrated in December.
Hannukah, also known as the Festival of
Lights, is a Jewish holiday. Find out more about what it is and how it is
Christmas is celebrated in every corner of
the world. Although each culture has differences, many of the traditions are
the same. Find out a little about the origins of such traditions as Santa
Claus, Christmas trees, Boxing Day and cards.
Eid Al Fitr is a Muslim Holiday which marks
the end of Ramadan. Ramadan is a month of fasting. Find out more about
Ramadan and about the Eid Celebrations.
Recipes, Crafts and More
American children know that a pancake is thick round and dry, and that you add a topping to it. British children will tell you it is thin, slightly oiled and tastes best rolled up with lemon juice and sugar in the middle. Egyptian children eat it as a snack, folded in half, stuff with nuts or cream, deep-fried and soaked in sugar syrup. So who is right? When is it a pancake and when is it something else completely?
Although Origami is known to be a Japanese Art or sometimes Craft, it actually started out in China. The Chinese invented paper, and when the invention spread to Japan, so did the art of paper folding. Most Japanese practice origami, but it started out as an art form for religious ceremonies. Find out more about the history of origami, and try your hand at a simple model.
There are plenty of sites online showing how to make paper lanterns, but none quite as impressive as this one. It takes basic materials, a little skill and a lot of patience. Follow these simple instructions and make your own. This one is similar to the lanterns the children carry on St. Martin’s Day.