Christmas Around the World Bundle
Explore geography, history, and folklore, while enjoying the festive mood of the holiday season with this Christmas Around the World bundle!
This listing is for a downloadable PDF file. Print and cut as many copies as you need.
Explore geography, history, and folklore, while enjoying the festive mood of the holiday season with this Christmas Around the World lesson plan!
In places where the seasons are well-defined and the winter months are cold, December often brings a celebration that revolves around a particular character who brings the festive spirit along with a bag of presents for children. Santa Claus is one of the most famous characters, associated with winter holidays in the modern times. But in Europe, many countries celebrate his prototype, Saint Nicholas. In Slavic countries, people wait for Grandfather Frost, who also looks and behaves similar to Santa Claus, but brings along his sweet granddaughter Snegurochka, the snow girl. In Scandinavia, the gifts are brought by a gnome, and in Iceland, there is a jolly gang of trolls. The list doesn’t end here. There are plenty of other unique gift-bringers around the world!
In this pack, we are going to explore winter celebrations around the world through the stories of these characters.
The List of Christmas Characters
Santa Claus (USA, Canada, Australia, Great Britain), Christmas Elf (USA, Canada, Australia, Great Britain), Befana (Italy), Christkind (Austria, Switzerland, Germany and many other countries of Europe and South America), Three Kings (Spain, Mexico), Julenisse (Scandinavia), Knecht Ruprecht (Germany), Krampus (Austria, Germany, Croatia), Sooty Piet (Netherlands), Olentzero (parts of Spain and France), Tió de Nadal (parts of Spain), Tante Arie (parts of France), Saint Lucia (Scandinavia and Italy), Saint Nicholas or Sinterklaas (Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and many other European countries), Grandfather Frost (Russia), Snegurochka (Russia), Chyskhaan (Russia), Tovlis Papa (Georgia), Uvlin Uvgun (Mongolia), and Yule Lads (Iceland).
Christmas Around the World Bundle Includes
- twenty colourful informative posters, each featuring the story of a character, along with the countries they visit, the dates they come on, and a holiday greeting in their native language
- twenty Christmas colouring pages
- Christmas paper & magnetic doll templates with a complimentary matching game
- Christmas Guess Who board game, a game of festive deduction + rules for two players, classroom, and a party
- Christmas trivia game, a game that challenges its players to the battle of wits and acts as an awesome stocking stuffer
- a lesson plan for your classroom or homeschool, outlining how to use these materials to learn about winter festivities around the world
Over 130 printable pages in PDF!
Who Can Use the Christmas Around the World Bundle?
- Educators. In an educational context, Christmas Around the World Bundle takes something everyone loves – holidays – and uses this theme as a starting point for teaching about geography and cultural diversity. After all, the closer it is to winter vacations, the more challenging it becomes to get any schoolwork done, and this bundle is perfect for that period! Children can use maps and learn about geography, make comparisons of folklore and traditions from around the world and employ syllogistic logic while playing the game. Yet it’s all about the holidays!
- Parents and grandparents. Not concerned with the educational aspect quite as much? Colouring pages and paper dolls are great for occupying children during the holiday season, and the Christmas-themed board game will be a hit at a family gathering! You can play it as a game of deduction, such as the traditional Guess Who Game, or as a party game, similar to the What Am I? game. There is a lot of holiday trivia included, and it’s hard not to laugh when you discover such peculiar characters as Krampus, the Austrian gift-bringer with a whip, or the Catalan log that is known to poop presents…
FAQ about Christmas Around the World Bundle
Here are a few questions that may need answering before you decide how suitable this pack is for your class or family!
- Can I use this pack if my children still believe in Santa Claus?
- Yes, as long as they would be alright with the knowledge that children in other countries get gifts from different characters. While some of the articles on gift-bringing characters briefly discuss their roots, the fact that parents play their roles in the modern world has been tactfully omitted. If your children already know that, they will understand. If they don’t, the articles shouldn’t reveal any secrets.
- Is this pack religiously-oriented or secular-oriented?
- Secular-oriented. This material objectively presents the traditions of different cultures without much examination of the belief systems behind them. Many gift-bringers came from Christian traditions (Christkind, Saint Nicholas, Saint Lucia, and, surprisingly, Befana), while others have pagan or secular origins (Yule Lad, Julnisse, Snow Maiden).
- Do all these characters come at Christmas time?
- Thereabouts. As you meet different characters, you will find out that not all of them come on Christmas day, though. Sinterklaas comes on his own day, December 6, but for those countries who celebrate him, this is the beginning of the seasonal winter celebrations. Tovlis Papa, from Georgia, behaves in many ways like Santa Claus and brings gifts for children, but he actually comes on New Year’s Eve. Befana is even known to sneak into houses through a chimney to leave her gifts, but she comes on the day of Epiphany (January 6), which concludes the holiday celebrations in Italy.
Whenever these characters come though, they add to the festive spirit of winter celebrations. And if you get into the spirit of Christmas around the world, you can hold your own celebrations of different characters. Have Krampus visit on December 6 or dress like Saint Lucia, with candles in your hair, on December 13.