The book talks about Christmas celebrations in ten different countries. For each country, a fictional child introduces himself and his family, tells what he likes about Christmas, discusses his country's Christmas traditions, and tells how to say "Merry Christmas" in his language (with phonetic spelling).
The illustrations show the children in their traditional costumes with details of their homelands. After introducing Christmas in the ten countries, there is a two-page spread for children to make their own page about Christmas in their own country. It has places for pictures and sentences with blank spaces for children to fill in with their parents.
Then come a few pages describing how to do some of the activities the children mention in the book. These include a Mexican pinata, Norwegian Christmas pudding, French clay figures, and Sri Lankan paper chains. The preschool children were very interested in these, especially in the clay figures. We didn't have time to make them here so I'll share the instructions.
How to make French clay Christmas figures (santons)
- Mix 1 cup salt, 2 cups flour, and 1 cup water until the mixture is like play dough.
- Use the dough to make figures of the nativity--Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, shepherds, animals, etc.
- Bake the figures in an oven at 250 degrees Farenheit (120 degrees Celcius) until they are dry (one to two hours)
- After the figures have cooled, paint and display them!
New Hope Preschool students are free to borrow this book (after we finish with it this week). If you want to buy it, it appears to be out of print but amazon in both the US and Japan do have copies. See below.