Teaching at a small Catholic school, I witnessed lots of happy children counting the days till Christmas. The challenge was directing their excited energy in positive directions. I found that having them think of others, giving rather than receiving, helped us get smoothly through the days before Christmas. We baked. Using our math skills [measuring & counting] and language arts skills [following directions & sequence] we measured, mixed and baked cookies. Moms and Dads came in to lend a hand in the process. The hallways of the school smelled like sugar & butter. We gave the cookies to the veterans staying at our local Veterans’ Hospital. Cards & cookies cheered those soldiers and sailors who had to be in the hospital during the holidays.
I learned that the traditional Christmas party where students exchanged gifts with each other almost always ended in tears. Someone was forgotten or someone wanted a different gift. I found a solution to avoid this. Rather than exchanging gifts with each other the children brought in books to donate to our school library. Our small library was always in need of fresh reading material. The children were proud to donate a book or two that had their name on the inside cover. The librarian would come to our Christmas party and exclaim over each book. After vacation the books would be displayed in the library and available for anyone to read.
We also made cards and small gifts for our families with glitter and glue, crayons and ribbons, and big imaginations. The results were always one of a kind creations. Focusing on giving & , of course, on the religious aspect rather than the commercial aspect of Christmas made the days productive as we lit the candles on our Advent Wreath and colored in the days on our Advent Calendars.
Written in response to Geneabloggers Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories. Click on the link to read Christmas memories from other genealogists.
Cousins, do you have a Christmas memory you'd like to share? Let me know. I can add it to this Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories and maybe to the next family book. Contact me: cgbp[at]nycap.rr.com