Holiday Traditions in Ten Minutes a Day

Let’s face it:  the holidays are BUSY.  So here is how you can easily teach Holiday Traditions Around the World in just ten minutes per day!  Yes, it is possible and it can even be meaningful to your students!  Of course, if you can give some lessons a few more minutes, that’s even better, but the fact is that you don’t really have to do anything elaborate to get your point across. And that will free up your time to do some of those other things that always seem to pop up during the holiday season, such as attend programs, concerts, have parties, and all of that other great stuff! 🙂

Holiday Traditions in Ten Minutes a Day - HeidiSongs

The Basic Method

Plan on covering just ONE holiday per day.  Read a page about it from a Holiday Traditions Around the World book and look at the picture.  Then find that country on a map or on Google Earth.  Then we discuss it, comparing the holidays and letting the children ask questions or make comments… and that’s it!  The lesson is over.  If I want the lesson to last longer, I can let them color the coloring page if I want to, but we don’t have to!  I can have them write about it or make an art project related to it… but we don’t have to!  A discussion and looking at some pictures is really enough.  If you want to do a little more, find a YouTube video for kids about the holiday.


Choose Your Most Important Cultural Holiday Traditions and Do Those FIRST

Start by anticipating that you probably won’t be able to cover all of the different cultural celebrations that you would like, so pick the most important ones to YOU and cover them FIRST. That way, if you run out of time and have to skip something, hopefully it won’t matter so very much and you won’t have to feel guilty.  Of course, I use the Holiday Traditions Around the World book that I wrote and created myself (no surprise!) but you could probably do this same thing with many of the wonderful resources out there.  I was careful to choose the holidays around the world that I felt were the most important to include, (there are 15 in the book,) but I would definitely include any holidays that are celebrated by the children in my class in order to honor their families and help all of the children feel valued.

Holiday Traditions Around the World

Give Just Three or Four Facts for Each Holiday

One reason that I wrote my Holiday Traditions Around the World book is because each time I found a book about a certain holiday, it was usually very long and gave so much information!  My book has just one short paragraph about each holiday to accommodate the short attention span of the average primary student.  But you could probably just TELL the children what you know about each holiday and show them a photo you may be able to find online, and proceed like this.  That’s the budget way!  😉

All of the questions below came were generated just from the information on this page, with the exception of a few at the very end.

Combine Your Study of Holidays with Language Arts Instruction

This year, I have been trying to bring in our study of parts of speech into anything we are reading by having the children search for adjectives, verbs, nouns, etc. in the texts of whatever we are reading.  So I am planning on having the children find and highlight those parts of speech in the Holidays Around the World student booklet as we read.  I think that younger children could also look for sight words or even just the letter of the week in the passages they are reading!  It’s just a matter of stretching your mind to figure out how it could be done.


So just Keep It Simple, Sweetie!  That’s the key!  Then hopefully you will (all) ENJOY your holiday season!  Now if you are itching to do more, well, have we got some ideas for YOU!  Check them out! 🙂

Holiday Traditions Around the World & Guided Drawingfb
Holiday Traditions Around the World & Guided Drawing

Holiday Traditions Around the World & Critical Thinking
Holiday Traditions Around the World & Critical Thinking

Teaching Holidays Around the World & Tips for Google Earh FB
Teaching Holidays Around the World & Tips for Google Earth

Combining Holidays Around the World & STEM Projects!
Combining Holidays Around the World & STEM Projects!

An Elf on the Shelf Art Project- and a Round Up of Holiday Freebies
An Elf on the Shelf Art Project- and a Round-Up of Holiday Freebies


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Heidi Butkus

About Heidi Butkus

Heidi Butkus has been teaching in California public schools since 1985. She has somehow managed to stay in Kindergarten all of those years, with the exception of five years in first grade, and also taught a parent participation preschool for a short while! Combining a strong knowledge of brain research with practical experience, Heidi has created a wealth of fun and engaging teaching techniques that work well with diverse populations. She has presented at conferences nationwide, and is the owner and founder of Heidi has also created fourteen original CD's and DVD's for teaching beginning reading and math skills, three musical plays designed especially for young performers, and has written some picture books and many other teaching resources. Heidi's multimedia workshops are filled with fun and motivational educational activities that have been classroom tested and revised for effectiveness with all types of learners.
  1. Hi, Heidi
    This is Megan from Taiwan ROC.
    I just ordered the purchase with the credit card.
    But I’m not sure if I made it work.
    I didn’t see any sign showing me my order is working.
    And i can’t go anywhere like membership link to see my record.
    So please~ please help me to check it out.
    I like this gingerbread man musical version a lot ~~~

    This is my order:
    The Tale of the Gingerbread Man – Picture Book & Read-Along CD
    Listening Center – 2 Book + 1 CD Set
    1 $ 12.00

    • Hi, Megan!
      I will have my staff look at the orders again tomorrow and get back to you because our office is now closed. However, I can tell you that right now I do not see an order from anyone under your name. Be sure to check your email tomorrow!
      Also, there should always be a confirmation email after you order. You could check in a spam folder and see if it wound up in there, but again, I do not see an order under your name.
      Thank you,

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