Maligayang Pasko!

(That’s how they say “Merry Christmas” in the Philippines, in case you were wondering!)

We continued our trip around the world to see how other cultures celebrate the birth of our Savior.  We enjoyed learning about what the people of the Philippines call the “longest Christmas celebration in the world.”  The official start of the Christmas holiday is December 16, and they keep on going right through Epiphany (the way it should be, in my opinion!).

The main symbol of Christmas in that country is the Christmas star lantern (or parol, as it’s called there).  So, today in school, we made our own (highly simplified) version of the parol.  Basically, we melted crayon shavings between stars cut out of wax paper, and the effect was really cool.  The first attempts were a little on the dark side, because Turkey and Bunny mixed a few too many colors too close together, but they learned from that and the next ones were much better.

We also talked about the song the “12 Days of Christmas,” because there is such a focus on the time between Christmas and Epiphany in the Philippines.  I told Turkey and Bunny about the possible Christian interpretations of the song, and we listened to a popular recording as well.  We’ll be continuing with that theme throughout the week as we use the “12 Days of Christmas” to do some math.

This country was a little harder than the others I have planned, because I couldn’t find any traditional Christmas stories or legends originating from the Philippines, and I’m not so good with cooking Asian foods.  At least we had a fun craft to do, though, and I also managed to find a World Book Encyclopedia book dedicated entirely to Christmas in the Philippines at the library, so we were able to look at some pictures of their celebrations, as well as many different styles (and intricacies) of parols.

Now, can anyone tell me how to pronounce the above “Merry Christmas” so I can figure out if I was even close?

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