To complement the mini-series on my podcast: An International Festive Season episode no. 36.
When celebrating the holiday season, many teachers have the pressure of trying to figure out exactly how to be inclusive, respectful and celebrate. This is the holiday season for almost every culture! The season of ending one year and starting another is a celebration!
I urge you to stop using the phrase ‘Christmas Around the World’ and focus on ‘Festive Celebrations Around the World.
“If you are Jewish, then what you celebrate is different from the child who is Christian or Hindu. This isn’t a country difference, it’s a religious difference”.
Religion does play a role in traditions around the world and it can’t be ignored when learning about another culture. We learned from our guest on episode #36 that schools in India learn and celebrate all the cultures and this is exposure to our world and helps our children develop those critical thinking skills.
The Festival of Lights is a huge celebration in India! Engage your students by making the clay pots (a Diya) to celebrate!
Grab this free download for directions on how to make the clay pots (Diya) used for the Festival of Lights.
My son made a Diya and still remembers the day his friend’s mom came to class to teach them about the festival of lights!
INDIA: Highlights from the Podcast about the festive season in India!
- Festival of Lights – Starts in October or November (depending on the Lunar calendar)
- Christmas is celebrated with gifts and cake
- Students at school learn about all the holidays and religions and live in harmony.
- On New Year’s Eve – They exchange sweets and touch the feet of the elders for blessings at midnight.
- New Year’s Day – The priest comes to the house with the Hindu calendar to predict what will happen to you in the next year. They go to the temple in the morning to offer prayers. Like many other cultures, they make some promises for the next year.