Whewwwww! Today was packed with tons of fun as we visited Germany...our last stop on our Christmas Around the World tour. I am one tired Mama! ;)
Just to give you a heads up to how the day ended...
but, hey, all is fair in the name of learning.
The morning began with the reading of Cobweb Christmas, a German legend. It tells of miraculous spiders who spin their sparkling webs on Christmas trees...the creation of tinsel. This story also reveals another German tradition. Children will leave their shoes beside the door in hopes that Kris Kringle will fill them with gifts and treats.
Since tinsel was created in Germany around 1610, we wanted to celebrate this tradition. Old Crow and I opened up a bag of tinsel and sprinkled it on our 25 Names for Jesus Christmas tree.
Germans are also fond of gingerbread. They enjoy making gingerbread houses and gingerbread men. Using a milk carton, graham crackers, icing, mini marshmallows, and M&Ms, Old Crow put together his own gingerbread house. We bought a gingerbread house kit that he could decorate, but he wanted to put together his own house.
Then we took a break and snuggled on the couch together while I read, The Legend of the Christmas Rose. The Christmas Rose is Germany's equivalent to Mexico's Poinsettia. It's a pink flower that blooms in Germany around Christmas even in the snow.
We took a turn at practicing some German. We watched this tutorial on how to say "Merry Christmas" in German.
Along with tinsel, Germany also created the tradition of the Christmas tree. For snack time, the boys made an edible Christmas tree. We used ice cream cones, icing (leftover from gingerbread house activity), and M&Ms. Using food coloring, they turned the icing green and slathered it onto their cone. Finally, they added chocolate ornaments.
After snack time, we turned to those wondrous spiders again...this time with the book, Christmas Cobwebs. In this story, the spiders don't just spin webs to look like tinsel. They spin ornaments...special ornaments to replace the ones a family lost after a fire.
Old Crow and Crazy Horse created their own webs with glue and glitter. I drew the ball ornament for Crazy Horse to glitter, and Old Crow created the angel.
Then, Old Crow completed his Germany notebooking page.
To end our trip around the world, I gave Old Crow a blank world map. In order, he numbered each country we visited and then colored those countries. As he reached each country to color, I had him recall the things we learned about that specific country. We also pulled out his previous notebooking pages and crafts that were held in his suitcase. It was a great way to end the tour.
Now he is off on another trip...this one in the RV with the grandparents. Can't wait to hear all about it. Now I guess I better head to the kitchen and get that sink cleaned. ;)