Our Eight Days of Christmas Around the World: BRAZIL

For the fifth day of our whirlwind international Christmas tour, we'll venture south from Mexico to Brazil, another country we've previously studied in a rather in-depth way through our core curriculum this year. You can read here and here about what we learned then.



Oddly enough and even though Christmas is a very popular Brazilian holiday, I could not find any books related to the topic in our library system. So I'll read aloud the information about Brazilian Christmas traditions from Celebrate Christmas Around the World (CCAW).


The older girls will make Paper Flowers to represent the tropical flowers with which Brazilians decorate at Christmas (adapted from CCAW):
  • colorful tissue paper (5" squares)
  • green pipe cleaners (6" in length)
  • scissors
  1. Use five pieces of tissue paper for each flower. Stack them together and fold in half and then in half again. Then fold diagonally so you have a triangle.
  2. With scissors, cut around the outer edge in a scalloped, zig-zag, fringe, or other pattern.
  3. Open up the "flower." Poke one end of a pipe cleaner through the middle of the flower and bend it over to make a small ball in the center of the flower.
  4. Grasp the "stem" and base of the flower and twist them into a point to hold the stem and flower together.
  5. Separate and fluff out the "petals" of the flower to look realistic.

This will be too complicated for younger children so we'll also make a simple "Papa Noël" craft I designed myself:
  1. Find and print (one for each child) a large Santa head coloring sheet on the internet. I found this one by Sheri Osborn at About.com.
  2. Have the child color Santa/Papa Noël's face and nose.
  3. Use pulled-apart cotton balls or cotton batting to decorate his beard, hair, and hat brim and ball.
  4. Cut red construction paper into small random shapes. Glue onto his hat, trying to cover all the white space.
This sample is partially completed and gives you an idea of what the craft might look like.

Other Activities:

We'll play the Geography Game for South America from My Father's World: Exploring Countries and Cultures.


The Brazilians have a tradition of "giving white gifts at the Christmas Eve midnight mass. These packages hold white foods such as potatoes and rice, which will be given to the poor for their Christmas dinner" (CCAW, 13). So we'll have a "white foods lunch" of chicken, potatoes, white rice (a treat because we eat brown otherwise), shoepeg corn, and coconut macaroons.

Language Arts:

Each child will add another page to her Christmas Around the World booklet.

For more direction for making the booklet, click here and scroll down to the Language Arts instructions.

Previous Posts:

Photo Credits: cindy251978 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cindyandmike/5235595925/) and Mondmann (http://www.flickr.com/photos/81533006@N00/2049726980/)

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