Wednesday, January 13, 2021

More Christmas Around the World

I've decided that the only way to go through a pandemic where you're stuck inside your house in to travel around the world, which is just what we did "virtually" in homeschool this December.

My older kids got to do Christmas Around the World units in their 1st grade years.  We did this one Christmas as a family as well.  So we do have some experience with it.  Honor had never done it, however, so we had so much fun doing this as a family and for Honor's homeschool this Christmas.

To structure the unit, we used Globe Trot Scot's curriculum which we got from Teacher's Pay Teachers, but as I mentioned in previous posts, we supplemented it with videos made by friend's of mine from other countries, among other things.  We also used this book, which is a favorite of mine called "Merry Christmas Everywhere".  Lots of fun ideas there.

I thought I'd share a few extra things we did that made some of these days extra enjoyable.

When we visited Mexico, I ordered Mexican candy to fill our pinata...which my kids basically hated, although they did enjoy breaking the pinata.  It was a great way to get frustrations out!  However, Mexican candy has a lot of spices in it that they didn't enjoy.  Except chicklets! 

Pinterest pointed me to a fun game called "Loteria".  I was drawn to the awesome, colorful graphics.  It's basically exactly like Bingo.  I found this copy on Etsy and printed it off at home.  I filled a basket with little "prizes" for the winner of each round the choose from.  The graphics for this game are the same ones that have been used for like 100 years, so they're very iconic.

We had a great time playing this game.  Later, I caught them playing without me.  So that's a good memory.

When we visited Sweden, we learned about the Tomtens, which are little gnomes that watch over their people and animals at night...always with the reminder that Spring will come.  What better way to get through quarantine than to imagine little helpful spirits watching over us?

I've wanted to make some gnomes for a while and this no-sew sock gnome was approachable by all my kids from age 3-15.  That was the first time we'd crafted all together as a family in a very long time and it was super enjoyable.

We made a lot of gnomes.  It was kind of therapeutic.

As we were wrapping up, I started thinking of a friend of mine who needs to be watched over right now.  We wrapped up one of the gnomes and sent it to her.  The USPS was really slow around Christmas time.  But the "tomten" showed up right when she needed it.  I haven't seen this friend in a long time, probably 15 years.  So I was a little embarrassed for a second to send her this silly sock gnome, but I know it was a prompting, and her text to me after she received it was pure gold.

And India day....who can forget Diwali and India day!  We didn't do a craft that anyone enjoyed, but we did order India food and supported our local economy by having it delivered.

 One of our other favorite days was when we went to China and learned about Chinese New Year from my friend Wing, who delighted us with her amazing and quirky story-telling about receiving "the red pocket" as she called it.

And, of course, there was our German Christkindl Market, which I detailed extensively in another post.

Anyway, I actually had a good friend ask me what we're doing for Christmas around the world to help her daughter who is a Senior in high school get out of a funk.

I think January 2021 would be a great time to continue traveling virtually around the world and connecting with friends from other places.  Just imagine the possibilities!

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