Thursday, December 17, 2009
Thank You - Family and Cultural Traditions Shared
Over the past couple weeks, I've had several families come in to share their favorite holiday traditions. What a lovely way for the children to learn that although we may celebrate different holidays in different ways, we also share many traditions. Light is a wonderful unifying factor, as well as enjoying family, food, and charitable giving.
Last week, Kristen Boudia came to read Ian's favorite winter-time book and to show us their advent calendar. Each student got to open one door, and found $1.00. My door had sometime quite a bit larger. We decided to pool the money to give to the Humane Society of Huron Valley, and are in the process of deciding on two animals to sponsor.
This week, there was a flurry of activity. Pare Gerou came to talk about Winter Solstice, and the ancient traditions of honoring light and looking forward to rebirth and growing things. We made candles out of beeswax sheets and used seeds to make pine cone bird feeders for our feathered visitors we enjoy outside our huge windows.
First thing this morning, we were visited by Lucia, and heard some beautiful Swedish songs from Johanna Eriksson (joined by Freya and her son Arvid, pictured above). St. Lucia Day was actually the 13th of December, but we celebrated it today. After math, Kjirsten Blander made latkes, and also brought in a delicious noodle kugel, sour cream and applesauce. Students also received dreidels. The morning was spent eating this delicious feast and playing the dreidel game for Hanukkah gelt. And, finally, Johanna came back to make a Swedish craft with the children - Christmas crackers made from cardboard tubes and tissue paper.
Thank you all so very much for taking the time and sharing the love. I don't know of many other schools with such a dedicated and caring family community. It is humbling, to say the least.