It’s that time of the year! We’re heading into the 12 Days of Christmas beginning on December 25th. Even though you might have been busy with Advent & Christmas preparations, the liturgical season of Christmas really does last 12 days until January 6th when Epiphany (see Geography Quest: Epiphany Edition) begins. When the family celebrations come to an end, enjoy a little Christmas exploration during the remaining days of the season with Geography Quest: Christmas Edition.
Christmas Weather Around the World
Most world-wide explorations of Christmas might include how people celebrate, but how about what Christmas weather is like in different parts of the world. Traditionally, we often think of Christmas with jingle bells dashing through the snow and the sweet pictures of snow covered homes with lights in the windows. What do you think?
- What meteorological season is each continent experiencing on December 25th?
- Describe the average weather for each continent in late December.
- Find pictures of the outdoors in December from various parts of the world.
Christmas Trees Around the World
How does weather and location affect the type of Christmas trees people buy? I had a conversation recently with fellow bloggers in different areas of the U.S. and we determined that prices vary depending on where you live.
- Do you buy a live tree or do you have an artificial tree?
- If you buy a live tree, do you pick it up off the lot or do you cut it down at a farm?
- Research live tree prices around the country. Can you see a correlation?
- Map tree prices- just for fun!
Does Santa Really Travel the Whole World?
Is Santa really known around the world? Do a little research to learn about this cultural icon.
- Does each culture/country have a Santa figure which goes with the Christmas holiday? What are there names?
- What traditions surround the Santa character?
- What are the origins of these characters as they relate to Christmas?
- Do you celebrate any part of the Santa tradition? What are reasons to enjoy Santa? Why do some families choose not to celebrate with Santa?
Christmas in Literature
We can see how Christmas traditions are portrayed in literature. One well known book with a Christmas topic is A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. We read this recently for our book club. When is the last time you or your students have read the original by Dickens as opposed to a modern rendition? Our conversation brought up a few things we are going to research. Want to join us?
- Did Charles Dickens start the idea of “Christmas Spirit” with his tale?
- How was Christmas celebrated in England before this story? And after?
- Did A Christmas Carol popularize the modern way we celebrate Christmas?
- Compare the Christmas described in A Christmas Carol with other books mentioning Christmas in the 19th century. How do they match up?
Exploring geography is a lot fun and you can take time to research physical geography and the geography of people. As you enjoy your Christmas, take some time to answer some of these questions.
How did your Christmas traditions come to be?