Sunday, September 7, 2014

Happy Birthday Traditions!

Alles Gute zum Geburtstag! That’s Happy Birthday in German. Aren’t birthdays fun?!

They are a wonderful opportunity for children to be recognized and celebrated. And who knew there were so many ways to celebrate birthdays! So in continuing with the traditions around the world theme, we thought we would share some different birthday traditions!

In Germany, children don’t have to do any homework or any chores on their birthday (Sounds good to me!) In Australia, they eat “Fairy Bread”. In Mexico, children have TWO parties. In England, they make a cake that has objects in it that tell you your fortune (Be careful not to eat them!). In Ireland, they give bumps for your birthday (Ouch!). It is interesting and fun to find out how children (and adults) in other countries celebrate their birthdays. Check  ‘em out with this link: /traditions.htm.
In one of our classrooms, the birthday tradition is to make a “magic birthday cake”. The birthday child sits in the teacher’s chair and each child gets an imaginary bowl. The birthday child tells us what ingredients to put in the bowl. (Yes, the ingredients are a little crazy!) The class then mixes the ingredients in each of their bowls and scraps the mixture into an imaginary pan. (Directions and modeling are done for each step.) One of us then collects all the pans to put in the magic oven, which is the oven in the home family center. The timer is set and we patiently wait for the cake to be done. Our sense of smell is in overdrive and the smell of cake quickly fills the room. The timer goes off! (We usually manually move the timer, so the whole process only takes a few minutes.) One of us quickly retrieves the birthday cake from the oven before it burns and TA DA! It is a birthday cake. (We purchase individually wrapped cakes or cupcakes and have the cake in the oven before children arrive.) We all sing “Happy Birthday”, BUT before the child can eat his/her birthday cake, they get birthday spankings. (The birthday paddle is a pillow on a stick. We okay this with parents at the parent orientation and with the child on that day.)  

The children love it! Fortunately one of the teachers has a September birthday, so the children see this played out on a teacher beforehand. Adaptations are made for children who are uncomfortable doing this at any point. J 

 Books about Birthdays! 
Birthday Little Bird tale:
 (1st one made by students but were too shy to have their voices recorded!) 

Chinese Birthday Celebration 

 Japanese Birthday Tradition!   
 Watch the Japanese tradition of having a child carry a 4 lb. rice cake on the eve of her first birthday.
Cute German Geburtstag video  
Where we went for someone's birthday on Friday! (anyone recognize it?)
Birthday Product: (coming soon!)
This week's activity: All About Me Collage:
All About Me Chatterpix1 

All About Me Chatterpix 2: 

We would love it if you would share some of your classroom birthday traditions too! Have a great week!

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