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Worldwide Christmas Festivities!

Did you know that trying to hit the piñata is a Christmas tradition in Mexico?  Or that some families in Southern Italy will decorate their trees with chocolates and fruit to be eaten at the end of the Christmas season?

As December 25th draws near, it can be fun to learn about the different holiday traditions in other parts of the world, and here in the Children’s Section of the library, we have some great books that teach children about how Christmas is celebrated in other cultures!  Most focus on specific countries, such as Christmas in France and Christmas in Australia, while others talk about traditions in multiple nations.  Here are just a few of the interesting celebrations that you and your children can learn about:

Mexico- Mexicans celebrate this time of year with tradition called “Las Posadas,” which takes place on the nine days leading up to Christmas Eve.  Children travel from house to house, pretending to be Mary and Joseph, and ask for a place to stay.  Each night, a different house is picked to be the “posada” or “inn,” that welcomes everyone inside for a party!

Sweden- In addition to Christmas, Swedish Christians celebrate the feast of St. Lucia on December 13th.  Before dawn, the oldest daughter in the family dresses in white and delivers breakfast to the rest of her family, while wearing a wreath with candles on her head.  This custom originated with the story of St. Lucia, who delivered food to persecuted Christians at night, and used a wreath of candles to light her way.

Australia- Because the seasons in Australia run opposite to the United States, Australians celebrate Christmas as a summer holiday, with many people going to the beach, hosting barbecues, and even watching fireworks!

One Comment

  1. Meg says:

    I loved learning about different Christmas traditions when I was a kid, and always dreamed of being Lucia! Who wouldn’t want to wear a beautiful white dress and a wreath of candles?

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