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Celebrating Family Traditions

Group Size:
Large Groups


Students will learn about different family traditions and holiday celebrations from around the world.

Main Curriculum Tie:
Social Studies - Kindergarten
Standard 1 Objective 2

Recognize and describe how families have both similar and different characteristics.


  • Children Just Like Me, by Dorling Kindersley (UNICEF publication) ISBN: 0-7894-0201-7
  • Children Just Like Me: Celebrations!, by Annabelle Kindersley ISBN: 0-7894-2027-9
  • World in a Supermarket, by Roseanne Lanczak Williams ISBN: 1-57471-126-1
  • Hats Around the World, by Liza Charlesworth ISBN: 0590549111
  • Houses, by Marcia Fries ISBN: 1-57471-140-7
  • Mi Casa/My House, by Rebecca Emberley ISBN: 0316234481
  • Families, by Ann Morriss ISBN: 0688171982
  • Families are Different, by Nina Pellegrini ISBN: 0823408876
  • Who's in a Family, by Robert Skutch and Laura Niehaus ISBN: 188367266X
  • The Family Book, by Todd Parr ISBN: 0316070408
  • All Families Are Special, by Norma Simon and Teresa Flavin

Background For Teachers:
Teachers need to be aware and sensitive of different cultural backgrounds and celebrations, as well as have a basic understanding of the different celebrations being taught to students.

Student Prior Knowledge:
Students need to know an age appropriate amount about their family and traditions/celebrations.

Intended Learning Outcomes:
1. Respect similarities and differences in others.

2. Display a sense of curiosity.

3. Meet and respect needs of self and others.

4. Respect physical similarities and differences in self and others.

Instructional Procedures:
Day 1:

Begin by showing the students several pictures of families (i.e.: family with children, new husband and wife, elderly couple, single parent with child, adoptive families (parents of a difference cultural background than the child), etc.) asking them if these pictures are or are not families.

Explain that a family is just not a mom, dad, and children, but that a family is a group of people who love each other and work together to take care of each other.

Also talk about how the class is also a family because we all care about each other and are working together to become learners.

Explain that families are all different, but are still similar in many ways.

To learn about the differences in the families of students in the class, send home the attached questionnaire with each child.

When the questionnaires are returned to school, have the child (with teacher assistance) talk about their family and where they came from, and how they celebrate different holidays and cultural celebrations.

Day 2: (or after several questionnaires are returned)

After learning and observing the differences in the families of our class, their traditions, cultural backgrounds, and celebrations - explain that each student (and their family if you choose to send this project home to be completed) will be making a family flag to represent visually their family (using the attached template).

Explain to them that a crest is a symbol that represents a family, and that they get to create their own symbol that represents their family and cultural background.

After completion of the project, have the students share their family flags with the class. Notice their similarities and differences, and discuss why families are different and how those differences make each person and/or family unique and special.


Strategies For Diverse Learners:
Allow time in class for students who may come from a home where the parents may not speak or understand the take home project to complete the project at school.

To further explore differences in cultural celebrations and traditions invite parent to come in and share their experiences with the class through artifacts, dance, music, and/or food.

Connie Sorensen
Stephanie Seely
Rebecca Moffat
Lindsey Romero

Created Date :
Jun 17 2010 11:17 AM