In the last moments of our winter celebration we explored our homeland, O Canada!
After examining the internationally known carnaval de Quebec, we found out that there are castles made entirely out of ice; Princess Elsa from frozen isn’t the only one who can make ice castles!
Not only this, but there are ice sculpture competitions and winter sports going on as well. We learned all about it while visiting the Robsons Square Ice rink during our fieldtrip.
After exploring the arts and sports of the carnival, we also explored all the authentic Canadian food and treats!
We learned what maple syrup is, where it comes from, and how it’s made. It starts as sap, removed from maple trees using special tubes. It is poured into big buckets and boiled, until most of the liquid contents are evaporated, and we are left with a small jar of maple syrup. It takes a lot of sap to make a small jar!
As maple syrup experts, we took our ready made maple syrup and turned it into candy… with sides of healthy apples of course! We learned that maple syrup candy is made in the carnival by pouring boiled maple syrup into fresh snow!
Another special food found at carnival are beavertails. For those of you who are unaware, relax! They weren’t real beaver tails. 😉 They are pastries that are flattened to look like tails of beavers, fried, then sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. We learned that the beaver is the official animal of Canada and they use their flat tails as their special tool to make beaver dams in rivers.
We had so much fun learning about different aspects of our home country through Carnaval de Quebec! We hope you continue to join us in our new special spring theme in the month of April! Join us on Tuesdays, from 1-4pm! 🙂
We are now half way into our winter dreaming season! While many animals go into hibernation during the cold winter months, so far at our winter celebrations class, we’ve been learning how winter can be filled with so much life, traditions, and festivities! We started our winter celebrations class learning about Chinese New Year, specifically about the traditions and tales that are tied in with this widespread celebration!
First we learned about the zodiac calendar and the zodiac animals. We discovered that it was through a “Great Race” participated by all the zodiac animals, that they got their order in the calendar. We even got to act out the animals using flashcards and asked our fellow Big Kid friends which animal we are!
We also learned about the Nian, who was a not so nice monster that would frighten the people of the village until they discovered the 3 things he hated the most! He was scared of:
– and the colour red!
So after learning about this, our big kids had a mission of making lanterns, painting pictures of fireworks, and decorating everything with red and yellow!
Theres no festivities and celebrations without food! So for the following BKC class we learned how eating certain dishes and food during Chinese New Year could be good luck!
We discovered that eating noodles is a sign of a longer life, and mandarines also bring good luck. Spring rolls are also part of the Chinese New Year celebration since it symbolizes wealth because they look like gold bars! So guess what? For snacks that day we had mandarine oranges and yam spring rolls!
Lastly, we ended off our Chinese New Year month learning by going around Chinatown to admire all the beautiful red dominated decorations!
Our first half of Big Kids Club has been filled with so much fun! We hope you can continue to join us as we slip, skate, and slide into Canada’s very own Carnaval de Quebec. So far we learned about ice sculpture competitions, winter sports, and maybe we we’ll even have a chance to make maple syrup popsicles! Come join us in our BKC celebrations on Tuesdays at 1-4pm!
As we settle into the year 2017, we are filled with hopes, resolutions, promises of changes, and new beginnings as we start the year with celebrations!
Speaking of New Year celebrations, there are many cultures that celebrate the new year quite differently. For example, did you know that Chinese New Year, the biggest celebration in China, is actually partly the celebration of the coming of spring! It also starts a new animal’s zodiac year (2017 is the year of the rooster!) and it actually starts on January 28th rather than January 1st.
This celebration practiced by Chinese communities all over the world is definitely different from the January 1st New Year observed here in Canada.
This awesome holiday composes of many fun things such as:
-the lion dance
-the dragon dance
-Giving of red envelopes
-…and much more!
Having a deep passion in anthropology, I love to explore cultural variations in order to promote cultural awareness and understanding… while having fun of course! I hope by the end of the winter celebrations term, our big kids will also have a wider understanding and appreciation for cultural differences!
Would you like to learn more about winter celebrations? Come join us on Tuesdays from 1-4pm. 🙂