Category Archives: Cultural Traditions


Thanksgiving is a National Holiday in the United States.  After watching several videos on the History Channel and Scholastic’s website we learned a lot about this holiday!






What  did you learn about the Thanksgiving Holiday and the Pilgrims?

How do you and your family celebrate Thanksgiving?

What is a tradition?

A tradition is a belief, idea or custom that is handed down from one generation to the next.  The Thanksgiving Holiday is an American tradition because most Americans celebrate this holiday.

In the historical fiction story, Milly and Macy’s Parade, we learned that it was the Macy’s immigrant employees that brought some of their old world traditions to help create the first Macy’s parade.




In Balloons Over Broadway, we learned about the true story of Tony Sarg, the puppeteer who helped to create the large balloons that are now a tradition in the Macy’s Parade.  Did you know that Tony was an immigrant also?

Can you think of some other American traditions?

How do you celebrate Thanksgiving?

What are some of your family traditions?


Let’s Learn some Italian!

Thank you to Mr. Drucker and his students from the high school for visiting our classroom today.  They taught us some words in Italian!

Image Source:

Image Source:

If you live in the country of Italy you speak Italian.

Italy is on which continent?

Do you know anyone who speaks Italian?

What was your favorite part of their visit?

St. Patrick’s Day

We had a visit from Mrs. Z on Friday.  She is the mom of a student in our class.  She taught us about their family’s Irish culture.  Ireland is a country that is an island.  It is near the country of England.  The colors of the Irish flag are orange, white and green.  C.Z. did Irish Step Dancing for us.  When she danced she only moved her feet and her arms stayed down and didn’t move.  Mrs. Z told us that a long time ago when England ruled over Ireland there was a rule that no one was allowed to dance.  So, the dancers only moved their feet so when the soldiers look in the windows they didn’t look like they were dancing.  On St. Patrick’s Day they eat Irish Soda Bread.  Some people like it with butter and some like it plain. Mrs. Z made some for us to taste!  Mrs. Z told us about a special Irish ring, called a Claddagh ring.  The ring has a heart on it.  If the heart  is pointing towards the person it means you are married, or have someone you love.  Mrs. Z also told us about Irish sweaters.  They are made from sheep’s wool and are handmade.  The stitches and designs on the sweater stand for a family’s last name.  Mrs. Z told us that being a fisherman was a very popular job in Ireland along time ago.  If the fisherman got lost at sea, the sweater would help identify him.  So, we would like to thank Mrs. Z for teaching us so many facts about Irish culture.

Do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? 

Have you been to Ireland?  Are you Irish?

Do you do Irish Step Dance?

G’Day – A Visit from Down Under

Today we had a visitor in Art Class.  His name was Chris Pitkin and he is from Australia.  He taught us about the Aboriginal musical instrument called the didgeridoo.  It is a hollowed out tree trunk that you blow into.  The Aborigines are the first people that lived in Australia.  Aborigines use music to tell stories.  Then he taught us about dot painting which is the type of art that Aborigines use.  The Aborigine use their art to communicate stories without words.  They use symbols.  During Art we all got to do some dot paintings and tell stories with symbols.  Thank you Mr. Pitkin for visiting our school.

Have you ever done dot paintings or used a didgeridoo?

What was your favorite part of the visit?

What do you know about Australia?  Do you live there or have you visited?

Click on the picture and it will link you to a website where you can hear the sounds of a didgeridoo!



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Tooth Traditions

We just finished reading a book called Throw Your Tooth On The Roof written by Selby Beeler.  This book is about what children around the world do with their teeth after they fall out.  Here are some things we learned.  We found out that lots of  children throw their teeth on the roof!  Sometimes they yell, “I want a shiny tooth!  Please don’t give me a donkey tooth!”  Some kids believe that if they throw it straight their new tooth will grow in straight and if they throw it crooked it will grow in crooked.  One child from South Africa put her tooth in a slipper and then a mouse came and got the tooth.  They would get a present.  Some cultures made jewelry from their lost teeth!  There are many countries that believe a magic mouse comes to get the tooth.  Sometimes they get money or a gift from the magic mouse.  In our class children believe the tooth fairy comes at night when we are sleeping.  She takes our tooth and gives us money!  Most of us put our tooth under our pillow, but some of us keep our tooth as a special memory.  We liked this book because it taught us about different tooth traditions around the world, and we like learning about different cultures.




What do you do when you lose a tooth?

Have you read this book before?