Kindergarten students celebrate the holidays
By Celeste McNeil; photos courtesy of Tim Ryckman
Kindergarten students from Buffalo Ridge Elementary proudly kicked off the winter holiday season with their first showcase. They spent weeks learning and practicing songs about Kwanzaa, Chanukah and Christmas. Students came up with all the movements they performed along with the songs. The children held hands, swayed, clapped, jumped, snapped and raised their arms. They even practiced standing in the correct place on the risers. When showcase day arrived, parents, grandparents, and other family gathered in the gym for the performance. “We singed as loud as we could. We tried to do the best moves,” said kindergartner Zoey M. The Kwanzaa song was her favorite.
After the short performance, guests were invited to the individual classrooms where students showed off their artwork, knowledge, and class work. Students learned about traditional holiday customs and food from around the world. Additionally, they studied maps and globes. Mexico, Sweden, Germany and the United States were all destinations for their imaginary flights. “We flied all over the world and all the way back!” Zoey M. explained.
Handmade passports complete with a photo and birthdate accompanied each student. Construction paper suitcases neatly held their work.
Kindergarten students kept a travel journal with writing samples about traditions from each destination. They also discussed family traditions from their own experiences. Artwork created by the students included traditional Swedish gnomes associated with the winter solstice and Christmas called tomtes, reindeer and poinsettias. Andrea Gale’s class additionally made nutcrackers and tissue piñatas.
A week after their showcase, the kindergarteners performed their songs at the school winter assembly on the last day before winter break. Watching these small students sing their hearts out each winter brings a smile to the faces of all.