Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Diversity of Celebration

Have you ever looked at the back of embroidered fabric? Try it – you’ll see there are tons of individual threads of every color and size.  They’re each beautiful in their own way, but there’s no discernible image or pattern until you turn the fabric over. That’s how Girl Scouts works too!  We’re made up of so many different members who are all beautiful and unique in their own way and together, each of these threads makes us stronger.

There are tons of fun ways to celebrate our diversity this month. Want to teach girls about different religious holidays? Here are some upcoming holidays and what you can do with your girls.

  • December 8th – Bodhi Day (Buddhist) is a celebration of Buddha’s enlightenment. Teach your girls about meditation. Play relaxing music, encourage girls to be silent for several minutes, light candles and create colorful decorations. For more information about this holiday, visit http://www.ehow.com/info_10031977_holiday-bodhi-day-celebrated-do.html
  • Sundown December 16th - 24th – Hanukkah (Jewish) is a celebration of miracles. Talk with your girls about miracles in their own lives. Give each one a paper cut-out of a candle to decorate and write a miracle in her life. Next, have the girls stand together, creating their own human menorah and read each of their miracles. For more information about this holiday, visit http://www.myjewishlearning.com/holidays/Jewish_Holidays/Hanukkah.shtml
  • December 25th – Christmas (Christian) is a celebration of Jesus’s birthday. Talk with your girls about birthdays. Why is this a special birthday?  What makes a birthday special? What are some ways you can help make this day special for someone else? They might want to visit a senior center, make a card for a soldier overseas, or collect toys for needy children. For more information about this holiday, visit http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/christmas
  • December 26th -January 1st - Kwanzaa means "first fruits of the harvest" in Swahili. It is a holiday which celebrates African and African-American heritage and culture and includes many of the elements of a traditional African harvest celebration. Introduce your Girl Scouts to some of the traditions and symbols that are a part of Kwanzaa. What are some cultural traditions that each of the girls have in their family? For more information on Kwanzaa, visit http://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/lesson039.shtml
  • January 3rd - Mawlid an Nabi (Islam). Celebration of Muhammed’s birthday and teachings. On this day, Muslims honor the life and teachings of Muhammad. One of his teachings is forgiveness. Talk with your girls about forgiveness. Try having girls write an “I Forgive You” card to someone who recently upset them. Why is this difficult?  For more information about this holiday, visit http://www.socialstudiesforkids.com/articles/holidays/mawlidannabi.htm

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