Celebrations Around the World with Montessori-Inspired Activities
As the end of the year approaches, many delightful celebrations take place throughout the world. One of the riches of the Montessori Method is the message of universal respect to people of different backgrounds, cultures, and countries. Today, we honor the many beautiful and wondrous ways that people celebrate, and bring you this diverse collection of holiday celebrations from around the World.
“For those who don’t know what Diwali is, it’s not just a Hindu festival, it’s an identity of the Indians. It could be simply termed as ‘festival of lights’ which is believed to dispel darkness and bring in the light of clarity. The whole country is excited during this season and there is so much of hope and joy in the air. There would be loads of deepams/diyas in every corner of India, houses being decorated with flowers and garlands and the aroma of sandalwood, incense and vadas being fried lifts your spirit!” ~ Melani, Little Fingers at Work
In her super informative blog post, Montessori Inspired Diwali Activities, Melani shares some really excellent ways to incorporate the Diwali celebration into her child’s Montessori lessons and activities.
“Kwanzaa is a celebration of African-American ancestry. It is filled with celebrating our ancestors through food, community service, gift sharing, history and family. Kwanzaa begins on December 26th and ends on January 1st. Each day represents one of the seven principles of Kwanzaa which is commemorated with lighting a candle on the Kinara each of the 7 nights.”
Yuliya of Welcome to Mommyhood is Russian-born, raised in the U.S., attended university in Europe, and now resides in the Netherlands with her husband and young son.
“I thought it would be nice to share some of the holiday traditions that are important here in the Netherlands, specifically Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas' Day) […] It all starts off with the arrival of Sinterklaas, called the Sinterklaas intocht! This takes place about two to three weeks before the actual holiday. This is when Saint Nicholas comes from Spain to the Netherlands to prepare for the holidays.” Read more about Sinterklass here. Or check out Yuliya’s Montessori-inspired activities in her blog: St Nicholas Day (Montessori inspired) Activities.
NAMC’s blog, Hanukkah Activities and Reading for the Montessori Classroom, has some great introductory information about Hanukkah as well as numerous links to Montessori inspired Hanukkah activities, books, and more. “Hanukkah (also spelled Chanukkah) is the festival of rededication, also known as the Festival of Lights and is a 2,000-year-old tradition.”
Christmas in the Philippines
“Christmas is and has been my favorite time of the year. In fact, it has always started earlier for me than most people in the United States because I grew up in the Philippines. There, we celebrate through all the “-BER” months (SeptemBER, OctoBER, NovemBER and DecemBER!) Christmas music and bright lights fill the sky as the whole country enjoys this much awaited season.” - Diane, When Hippos Talk
Diane has some really great Montessori-inspired Christmas ideas, and gives us a glimpse into what Christmas is like if you live in the Philippines. Check out her post: The Alphabet and Number Christmas Trees.
New Year’s Eve
Suzanne from Teaching from a Tacklebox shares her beautiful New Year’s Eve Advent Celebration.
“he older kids serve the younger kids at the table. But before we eat, we turn off all the lights and I share the CGS presentation of the Prophecy of the Light.” (CGS-Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is the Montessori way to teach the faith.)
Learn more by visiting her blogpost, Advent - New Year's Celebration!
Holiday Rituals and Celebrations
“Rituals are a large part of human history. They have to do with your culture, your time and place in history. So let’s take a look at creating rituals in our families, specifically towards the end of the year, the festive season.” ~Simone, The Montessori Notebook.
I couldn’t have said it better, Simone! Read more about Simone’s journey to create lasting holiday rituals at home in her post: Creating holiday rituals with your children!