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Christmas Traditions

8. 18. 1. 15. 10. 6. 22. 12. 24. 2. 19. Christmas Traditions. 11. 5. Around the World. Find out about Christmas traditions, old and new!. 16. 13. 23. 3. 14. 20. 4. 21. 9. 17. 7. Teacher notes. 1. In France.

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Christmas Traditions

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  1. 8 18 1 15 10 6 22 12 24 2 19 Christmas Traditions 11 5 Around the World Find out about Christmas traditions, old and new! 16 13 23 3 14 20 4 21 9 17 7 Teacher notes

  2. 1 In France... Father Christmas is called Pére Nöel. He ‘travels’ with his companion Pre Fouettard who reminds Pére Nöel how each child has behaved this year! On Christmas Eve, children leave their shoes by the fireplace to be filled by Pére Nöel. In the morning they may also find that sweets, fruits, nuts and toys have also been hung on their Christmas tree. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  3. 2 In Norway... Some Norwegian children (particularly those that live in the countryside) remember a little gnome called Nisse at Christmastime. He guards all the farm animals, and he plays tricks on the children if they forget to place a bowl of special porridge for him. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  4. 3 In China... The Christian children of China decorate trees with colourful ornaments. These ornaments are made from paper in the shapes of flowers, chains and lanterns. They also hang muslin stockings. The Chinese Christmas trees are called ‘Trees of Light’. Santa Claus is called Dun Che Lao Ren (‘Christmas Old Man.’). Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  5. 4 In the Czech Republic... Father Christmas is called Svaty Mikalas. It is thought that he climbs down from heaven on a golden rope accompanied by an angel and a devil! Celebrations begin with his visit on 6th December and ends with the visit of the Three Kings on 6th January. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  6. 5 In South Africa... Christmas in South Africa is a summer holiday! Do you know why? Homes are decorated with pine branches and a Christmas tree. At bedtime on Christmas Eve, children may also hang up their stockings. Most people spend their Christmas Day outside or on the beach. Carol singers make their rounds on Christmas Eve and Church services are held on Christmas morning. Many South Africans have their Christmas Turkey dinner in the open-air or have a barbecue. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  7. 6 In Austria... In Austria, baked carp is served for the traditional Christmas dinner. Do you know what that is? On 6th December, Heiliger Nikolaus (or St. Nicholas), is said to reward good children with sweets, nuts and apples. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  8. 7 In Canada... Canada is a HUGE country and has several different traditions, depending on where you live! Here are just a couple… In Nova Scotia, a country settled by Scottish highlanders, songs and carols brought from Britain two centuries ago are sung each Christmas morning. In an area called Labrador, turnips are saved from the summer harvest and are given to children, with a lighted candle pushed into a hollowed out hole. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  9. 8 In Brazil... Papai Noel or Father Noel is the gift-bringer in Brazil. According to legend, he lives in Greenland. When he arrives in Brazil, he usually wears silk clothing due to the summer heat. A Brazilian Christmas dinner might include turkey, ham, coloured rice, and wonderful vegetable and fruit dishes Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  10. 9 In Finland... Everybody's house is given a very good clean in readiness for Christmas. The Christmas tree is set up on Christmas Eve. Apples and other fruits, candies, paper flags, cotton and tinsel are used as decorations and candles are used for lighting it. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  11. 10 In India... Christians in India decorate banana or mango trees. They also light small oil-burning lamps as Christmas decorations and fill their churches with red flowers. They give presents to family members and charity to poorer people. In South India, Christians put small clay lamps on the rooftops and walls of their houses at Christmas, just as the Hindus do during their festival called Diwali. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  12. 11 In Venezuela... On December 16th, families bring out their pesebres (specially designed models of the nativity scene). On January 6th when some children awaken, they discover that the straw that they had left beside their bed the night before has gone and they know that the Magi (the Wise Men) and their camels have been. Gifts are left in the straw’s place. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  13. 12 In Ukraine... In the Ukraine, Father Frost visits all the children in a sleigh pulled by only three reindeer. He brings along a little girl named Snowflake Girl. She wears a silver blue costume trimmed with white fur and a crown shaped like a snowflake. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  14. 13 In Scotland... A long time ago there was a superstition that it was bad luck for the fire to go out on Christmas Eve, since it is at this time that the elves were about and only a raging fire would keep them from coming down the chimney. On Christmas day, people sometimes make big bonfires and dance around them to the playing of bagpipes. Bannock cakes made of oatmeal are traditionally eaten around this time. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  15. 14 In Poland... During Advent and sometimes on Christmas Eve wax is poured onto water and fortunes are told from the shapes which emerge. Christmas Eve, Wigila, is the most important part of the Polish Christmas. A traditional food found in Poland is Oplatek which is a piece of bread pressed with a holy picture on the surface.This bread is usually shared with family and friends and while it is eaten the person must do two things: forgive any hurts that have occurred over the past year and to wish the person all the happiness in the coming year. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  16. 15 In Ethiopia ... The Ethiopian Christmas is called Ganna and takes place on January 7th. Gift giving is a very small part of the celebration and children usually receive very simple presents such as clothing. A sourdough pancake called injerais often eaten which serves as both plate and fork. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  17. 16 In Australia... Australian families often celebrate Christmas on the beach with a picnic. Santa Claus often arrives on a surfboard! Outdoor carol singing is very popular as the weather is pleasantly warm. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  18. 17 In Italy... On January 6th, Italian children receive gifts from a friendly witch called ‘Le Befana’. She flies around on her broom giving presents to the good children and coal to the naughty ones! Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  19. 18 In Iraq... Christian families in Iraq light a bonfire in their courtyard on Christmas Eve. The fire is made of dried thorns and the future of the house for the coming year depends upon the way the fire burns. While the fire is burning, a psalm is sung.If the thorns burn to ashes, the family will have good fortune. When the fire is reduced to ashes, everyone jumps over the ashes three times and makes a wish. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  20. 19 In Greece... On Christmas Eve small boys go from house to house to sing carols to the beating of drums and tinkling of triangles. After 40 days of fasting, the welcome feast usually includes sweet golden bread called Christopsomo or Christ’s bread. Greeks burn fires to ward away mischievous goblins called Killantzaroi during the festive season. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  21. 20 In Iceland... Children put their shoes in the window for 13 days before Christmas. Each night a small gift is left by one of the 13 ‘Yule Lads’. They are sons of nasty trolls with names like Bowl Licker and Door Slammer! Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  22. 21 In Lebanon... Seeds are planted a fortnight before so that there are small green plants on Christmas Day bringing signs of new life. Children leave water and grain on their doorsteps for the Christmas camel who brings the gifts. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  23. 22 In Greenland... Christmas celebrations include dancing most of the night. Women are waited on by the men and Mattak is eaten. This is whale skin with a strip of blubber inside which is very tough and tastes a bit like coconut. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  24. 23 In Mexico... In Mexico, ‘Las Posadas’ starts on the 16th December with 9 days of candlelit processions and lively parties. On Christmas day, children are blindfolded and they have to try to break a decorated clay piñatawhich is filled with sweets. Those children who have been good also on January 6th receive a gift from the Three Wise Men. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  25. 24 In Wales... Singing is traditionally an important part of Christmas celebrations often accompanied by a harp. In some rural areas a villager is chosen to be the Mari Lwyd (the Grey Mare). This person travels around the town draped in white and carrying a horse's skull on a long pole. They would stop at a house and exchange jokes, songs and well wishes for a warm welcome, food and drink.A chewy toffee called Taffy is often eaten at Christmas. Where in The World? Back Google Maps

  26. Teacher notes... Please note that the traditions included in this resource are both old and new. Some of those mentioned may not be the way many people in that country celebrate Christmas today and may be very old. You could discuss old and new traditions in Wales and the UK with the children so that they understand this point and avoid any ‘stereotypical’ views of other traditions. Many old traditions, such as the Mari Lwyd in Wales, are starting to regain popularity. It is also a good idea to get your children to briefly compare the traditions each day with our own Christmas festivities to find differences and similarities. Lastly, these discussions are likely to bring up the topic of ‘the existence of Father Christmas’. Think carefully about how you might answer such questions (to keep the magic alive!) A World map can be found on each slide so that children can offer suggestions of where they think each country can be found before revealing the answer using the ‘Where in the World?’ button on screen. There’s also a hyperlink to Google maps on each slide so that you can jump out to that site and search for the country more clearly. Back

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