In the western world, Christmas is big. While retail stores start marketing in late September, the general public doesn’t get into the spirit until Thanksgiving Day; largely masked by Black Friday – the day you stand in line to get the best deals of the year! The shopping is a big part, but an even bigger part is the music. Some radio stations even start playing 24 hour Christmas Carols starting the week before Thanksgiving! The music helps to inspire us, get us into the Christmas Spirit, and get us excited to spend…spend…spend.
To enhance our children’s global perspective, and help them to become global citizens, I thought it would be fun to look at Christmas musical traditions around the world, as even non-traditional Christian countries have adopted some Western Christmas traditions.
We will start in North America and see how my neighbors to the south celebrate Christmas.
Feliz Navidad – Merry Christmas from Mexico
In Mexico, Christmas is celebrated December 12 – January 6. During Christmas you will likely see nativity scenes, poinsettia flowers (the flower of Christmas Eve), and Posada Processions; which celebrate when Mary and Joseph were looking for the Inn.
Here is another traditional Christmas song of Mexico
Let’s pack up our bags and we will travel to the Europe!
God Jul – Christmas in Norway
There is no Santa Claus in Norway, but watch out for that Christmas Gnome. He gets angry if you don’t leave porridge.
Now, to get on our plane and fly to a continent to the far east.
즐거운 성탄절 보내시고 새해 복 많이 받으세요 Merry Christmas from Korea
Christmas in Korea is not quite the same. In South Korea, Christmas is about couples, so many of the songs that you will hear will be romantic in nature.
While you might hear the more traditional Jingle Bells, and White Christmas on the streets, on the radio, it will be something like this.
Alright. Time to pack-up, and move onward and downward.
G’day Mate – Christmas in Australia
It’s hot in Australia, so instead of wearing boots and coats, they are laying out on beaches and surfing. If you are there, pay attention to shark warnings – posted when there is a shark spotting in area beaches.
Christmas down under has a the glitz, tinsel and festive music as any western area. The difference, Australia has a rich collection of cultures – all who come with different celebrations. Most celebrate like we do in the western culture.
Here are some traditional Christmas songs in Australia
Well, I guess it’s time to hunker-in as it’s going to be a very long flight to Africa.
In Hausa – ‘barka dà Kirsìmatì’
In Yoruba – ‘E ku odun, e ku iye’dun’
in Fulani – ‘Jabbama be salla Kirismati
in Igbo – ‘E keresimesi Oma’
in Lbibio – ‘Idara ukapade isua’
in Edo – ‘Iselogbe’ – Merry Christmas in Nigeria
In Nigeria, Christmas is about family. During the Christmas season, you will find many artificial Christmas Trees, and many parties – especially on Christmas Eve.
Christmas day is spent at Church.
While we are enjoying the dog days of summer during Christmas, let’s venture over to Chile.
Feliz Navidad – Merry Christmas in Chile
You won’t see Christmas Trees, mistletoe or snow in Chile. Christmas will be spent in the dog days of summer – Long summer days leading to short summer nights.
In Chile, Christmas brings families together, where they spend their days talking about family and Christmas Memories. They also spend a lot of time at Church celebrating the life of Jesus Christ.
The songs of chile will sound very familiar.
Here is a list of Christmas music throughout South America
A Fabulous Holiday Collection For your Children
We really enjoy listening to Christmas music at our house, but the traditional songs get boring after a while. For holiday music with a more cultural flair, we always chose Daria’s CD. For a fabulous collection of multicultural holiday music – Check out The Holiday CD by Daria here.
Do you and your children listen to multicultural holiday music? I would love to hear how that exposure has enhanced your child’s perspective of the world.
The Squishable Baby focuses on creating positive learning experiences through everyday life. I believe that learning about – and respecting diversity, charity, and our environment – through play, through crafts, through lessons, through giving – will not only produce more empathetic children and adults – but will put a child on a path to a love of lifelong learning.
You can find me blogging at The Squishable Baby
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