Mexican Christmas -- Preschool & Kindergarten

Mexican Christmas

Feliz Navidad

The Flower of Christmas Eve
A Mexican folktale

Alphabet Letter Color Page
Pp is for poinsettia

Fingerplays/Songs

Feliz Navidad
tune: the farmer in the dell

Explain that Feliz Navidad means "Merry Christmas" in Spanish.

Feliz Navidad (fey-lees nah-vee-dahd),
Feliz Navidad.
Merry Christmas everyone,
Feliz Navidad.

Feliz Navidad
Lyrics of video song

Feliz Navidad (Merry Christmas)
Feliz Navidad (Merry Christmas)
Feliz Navidad(Merry Christmas)
Feliz Navidad (Merry Christmas)
Prospero año y felicidad (A prosperous year and happiness)

Things to Know

In Mexico and parts of Central America, people celebrate La Posada during the nine days before Christmas. The word posada means "inn" or "shelter" in Spanish. Processions reenact the journey of Josesph and Mary's search to find shelter before the birth of the baby Jesus.

Story

The Legend of the Poinsettia retold by Tomi de Paola

Art

Paper Plate Poinsettia

Trace and cut-out the children's hands from red and green construction paper. Starting from the outer edge and moving toward the middle glue the hands onto a paper plate with the fingers pointing outwards. Glue first the green hand tracings around the edge of the paper plate (fingers pointing outward). Then glue a second circle of red hand tracings just inside the first circle (fingers pointing outward). Glue a third circle of red hand tracings around the center of the plate (fingers pointing outward). In the center of the paper plate glue a small yellow circle.

Poinsettia

Using red construction paper cut out 5 leaf shapes. Glue the leaf shapes in a circle onto green construction paper. Have children tear yellow construction paper into small pieces an glue in In the center of the flower.

Foil Christmas Ornaments

Many Christmas ornaments that come from Mexico are made out of tin.

Give the children foil cupcake liners and colored tissue paper. Have the children smooth out the foil liners with their hands. Let them tear various colors of tissue paper into pieces. Have them brush glue on their liners and lay the tissue paper on top of the glue. Remind them to leave a little foil showing around the edges of their liner and to overlap their tissue paper. When dry punch holes in the tops of the ornaments and tie on loops of yarn for hangers.

Mexican Serapes
Need: rolls of paper towels, tape, tempera paints.

For each child tear off a 4 piece section of paper towels. On the back place tape over the perforated lines. Have the children snip fringes along the short ends and use various colors of tempera paint to decorate their serapes with stripes, dots, or other designs. When dry let the children wear their serapes draped over one shoulder or wrapped around both shoulders.

Pinata

Papier Mâchè Piñata
Need: Water, Flour (one part flour to one part water) Strips of Newspaper (about 1 inch wide), Balloon, Candy

Mix flour and water in a large bowl until it makes a smooth paste. Cover a table with newspaper. Blow up a balloon and lay it on aluminum foil to prevent it sticking. Dip in the newspaper strips, one at a time, remove the excess paste from your fingers and lay the coated newspaper on the balloon to be papier mâchèd. Smooth out the wrinkles and continue to place coated newspaper over the surface until completely covered. Layer newspapers and paste two or more times onto the balloon. When finished scoop up the paste that is left in the bowl and smooth over the balloon. When the surface has totally dried, cut a slit in the back and stuff in the candies, cover and tape the opening closed, then paint your own design.

The Posadas from Dec. 16th to Dec. 24th celebrates the journey of Mary and Joseph. It ends each evening with a pinata filled with treats for the children.
You can blindfold an adult, spin the adult around 2 or 3 times and have the children give directions on where the pinata is.

Pinata Chant
You are near,
Your are far,
Hit it,
Hit it,
Now!

Pinata Song
tune: If you're happy and you know it

A pinata can be so much fun to break (clap clap)
A pinata can be so much fun to break (clap clap)
Everybody tries and tries
With a blind-fold on their eyes
Till CRAA-AASHH! (spoken) down
falls a wonderful surprise.

Make a Sunburst Piñata
Tape paper cone-shaped (pointed bottoms) drinking cups around the circumference of an inflated balloon. After the papier mâchè has dried, cut a slit in the back and stuff in the candies, cover and tape the opening closed, then paint.

Science/Math

Counting Christmas Toys

Mexican children find their presents tucked inside their shoes on the morning of Three Kings Day.

Give each child a large paper shoe cut-out from construction paper. Choose a number you are working on and write it on each child's paper shoe. Let the children tear pictures out of magazines and catalogs and glue the corresponding number of "presents" on their shoe shapes.

Shoe Soles Outline

Things To Do-Other Sites

Mexican Bean Bracelets
Create these lovely bracelets using toilet
paper rolls. Age 4+

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