Holiday Traditions

Holiday Traditions Header

Creating Holiday Traditions for Your Students!

As we come into this chaotic holiday season, it is so easy to forget how different students and their families celebrate this season. We all have our own traditions that we have with our families or we have started ourselves. My family for years had a tradition of build your own pizza at the holidays and I continue it in my own way by having pizza on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Traditions are important for everyone, especially our kids and students. Traditions are just patterns or structured events that happen at different times of the year. Some kids also build some of their favorite memories with holidays. Let’s take a look at the different things that happen around the holidays and how we can create our own traditions with our students.

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No holiday is complete without food! Christmas has its traditional foods, ham, turkey, pies, corn, green beans. Hanukkah has latkes, roasted chicken, brisket, and the classic matzo ball soup. For the Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe you will find tacos, gorditas, carnitas, tamales, atole, and pozole. Some families even have their own traditions on those days, homemade build your own pizza, italian delights, and special desserts just for the holidays or big gatherings. Incorporating a small tradition for your students, keeping in mind restrictions, can be a great thing for students to carry on with them, showing them that they can build something from their ideas as well. 

When a lot of us were kids, we had games we would play with our friends or our families that became favorites or almost like a tradition. Some families play board games, some watch certain movies every year, others get together as a family to make their meals. Not all families are lucky enough to do that. That is where you can step in. Many of us as kids got to make our own decorations in school to take home. I still do it to this day. Also festive movies fill our screens this time of year. No matter what you celebrate, there is something out there. Make sure you develop something that your students can take with them. Simple things that you can pick up from the dollar store, a fun and engaging activity like The Magic Wand Kit, or items that can be repurposed from your current activities. Just make it memorable!

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A lot of families have a holiday that they celebrate in the month of December. Everything ranging from the typical Christmas to Hanukkah to Feast Day of Our Lady Guadalupe. Every family has a celebration or holiday from every walk of life it seems. We all know Christmas is a huge day for gatherings, bringing families and friends together for gift giving and being in the giving spirit. Hanukkah has a similar spirit, though slightly different. With an emphasis on bringing light in the world, this holiday is observed over multiple days, bringing people together and sometimes small gift giving. All of these traditions bring about time together. Some of our students don’t get to have that together time. Creating that time where they can be safe and themselves in your class can make or break a student's time in school.

Some of your students will struggle during this time of year. The holidays are hard for many people. Some kids don’t have the things we talked about above. That’s where you can step in in small ways to build up the joy in this season. You don’t have to do a lot to make a big impact. Encourage your students to spread positivity and joy while learning more about others. Celebrate everyone and help them build up traditions. Share stories and make them feel welcomed and included, but don’t force it. Meet them where they are at. You know your students, you know what will work. Most of all, remember to have a happy holiday season.

The Magician School is a National After School Program and Curriculum teaching students learning skills through magic tricks. The Magician School offers a multitude of programs catering to Elementary and Middle Schoolers. Learn More Below

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