The holiday season is upon us and what a joyous season it is! There’s so much to celebrate and experience with our families. We may have traditions that have been passed on from generation to generation, along with other new ones we are creating with our own little (or big) families. There’s so much going on around us, especially if you live in a place where you are exposed to different cultures. From the decorations that adorn the homes in your neighborhood, the foods highlighted at the grocery stores, to the holiday music that fills up the air. Everyone is in such good spirits, making it a great time for exposing our children to how others celebrate during this time of the year.
When you think about it, the holiday season could be a learning experience for little ones. A time during which they can gain an understanding and appreciation of other cultures…or at least a bit of it. An exercise which can help them become more empathetic towards other kids (from different backgrounds/religion), whom they might already be friends with or will cross paths with in the future. For, I believe, it is through understanding each other that barriers can be broken.
Below are a few books, from our Caribu library, that can help you get started with this important conversation…books that celebrate cultures and traditions from around the world. After reading, you can invite your child to create a drawing with you on the Caribu app based on what he or she has learned and maybe open up the discussion to other activities you can do together with the goal of celebrating diversity. Maybe this can become a new tradition! Happy Holidays!
‘Twas The Night Before Christmas
Follow the words of everyone’s favorite Christmas poem, filled to the brim with all the trappings of this holiday. Learn the names of Santa’s reindeer and find all the hidden objects along the way with this ‘Hidden Pictures’ version of the classic ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas’, that brings Santa to life year after year.
On the first night of Hanukkah, each of the children of the Levine house made a menorah, only Zachary felt embarrassed because he didn’t look like the others… it was different. Learn along with Zachary why Hanukkah can serve as a reminder that it’s ok to be different and that difference can be good.
Nativity Scenes Around the World
Take a trip around the world to see how people in Peru, Poland, and Africa set up their Nativity scenes, also called crèches or cribs.
Cielo invites Lisha to join her at her family’s ‘Posada’. Read this with your child, to learn, along with Lisha, an entirely new meaning to the word ‘shelter’ and this beautiful tradition celebrated across Latin America.
Spin, Little Dreidel
Did you know Jewish children around the world play a Hanukkah game with a spinning top? ‘Spin, Little Dreidel’ explains the history behind this special game and ends with easy to follow instructions for making your very own dreidel at home!
The Chrismon Tree
First used by North American Lutherans, The Chrismon Tree has since been adopted by other Christian denominations. Learn why The Chrismon Tree is a special kind of Christmas Tree and the meaning behind some of the ornaments traditionally used to decorate it.
Giving Thanks for Hanukkah
Why can’t Hanukkah always fall on the same day every year just like Kwanzaa or Christmas? Why does the date of the Festival of Lights keep shifting? ‘Giving Thanks for Hanukkah’ will explain how Hanukkah really is on the same day every year, just on a different calendar.
Kwanzaa Hidden Objects Activity
Did you know that the name Kwanzaa is derived from the phrase “matunda ya kwanza” which means “first fruits” in Swahili? Or that on each of the seven nights, family members gather to light one of the lights on the Kinara (candle holder) and discuss one of the seven principles? Challenge your child to join you in finding the hidden objects on this Kwanzaa celebratory scene, featuring the Kinara.
Holiday Coloring Pages
Before ending your video-call, don’t forget to also get creative with your little ones, filling in one of many holiday-themed coloring pages available in our Holiday category! Enjoy!