Celebrate the holidays with ten Web sites that no elf could do without! These resources will help you get in the spirit of the season and teach your students more about Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Chanukah. Ho! Ho! Ho! Let's learn about the holidays online!
Library media specialist Dianne Prager designed online activities for the holiday season that she calls the Christmas Around the World Internet Scavenger Hunts.
By making the hunts available to all students and teachers on the Internet, Prager -- who teaches at Pleasant Grove Elementary School in Stockbridge, Georgia -- hopes to provide a fun way for students to learn as they navigate the Web.
"Teaching the different holiday customs is a favorite topic for elementary teachers and students," Prager told Education World. "Although there are some great sites on the Internet on this topic, at the time we developed these pages there weren't any Web interactive pages for students. I know how students love a 'scavenger hunt.' Combining the two seemed a natural."
"Our students and teachers use the pages actively, and I have received many, many correspondences from people at other schools as well," said Prager. "The scavenger hunt pages are linked to quite a few schools' Web sites."
TERRIFIC HOLIDAY WEB SITES
The holidays are upon us! Do you need craft ideas? Information? Want to send an online greeting? The Web will help you make the most out of this holiday season with excellent resources for December celebrations.
Celebrations Around the World
Lin and Don Donn describe the history of many holidays celebrated in the classroom at their Holiday Lesson Plans page. This guide gives information and activity suggestions for December holidays such as Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah, as well as other celebrations you won't want to miss. A priceless collection of links is included for each holiday topic.
Chanukah is a December holiday that many teachers may not know very much about. If that's the case with you, the Chanukah Web site will surely rescue you! Check out the customs of lighting the menorah, singing songs, and cooking delicious Chanukah recipes. A special section of this site is designed to help teachers share the wonders of this season with their students. Although much of this is really created for religious instruction, there are plenty of resources for the regular classroom teacher.
When you think of Chanukah, do you think of fun? If not, Chanukah Time will change your mind! Download software with holiday screen savers and games, and send an e-greeting to a friend to celebrate the season. You'll find crafts to do, word searches, mazes, and coloring pages to enjoy. This Web site is full of Chanukah projects to make your students smile!
Investigate the Christmas customs of people in other countries by visiting Christmas Celebrations Around the World. Students may select from the table of nations to locate information about how Christmas is observed in those countries. This site would be the perfect start to a class project that describes holiday customs around the world.
Do you know how to wish someone a merry Christmas in another language? At Santa's Net, you'll be able to do that in many languages! An extensive list of countries will help you learn to share holiday greetings in Chinese, French, Portuguese, and more.
Catch the spirit of an African-American holiday celebration with Celebrating Kwanzaa. This site explains the history of the observance, discusses its symbols, and teaches students about the seven principles that are at the core of the season. There are activities, crafts, and recipes to share in the classroom, and you'll find suggestions for "zawadi," handmade gifts that are exchanged in honor of the holiday.
At Kwanzaa -- African American Holiday students will enjoy exploring the history of the holiday and its driving principles. They will find out how to pronounce Kwanzaa words and discover what goes on at a typical feast. This colorful site is an ideal stop as students begin their study of the holiday.
ADDITIONAL YULETIDE RESOURCES ON THE NET!
Article by Cara Bafile
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