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Halloween


Lucy P
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Hi, not sure what reaction i may receive from this post but here goes...

 

I don't like the topic Halloween. I do not want to discuss witches, ghosts, trick or treat etc with the children.

 

On the other hand all of my staff think i am being grossly unfair and it is only a bit of fun.

 

I wouldn't mind so much if i thought they would research the history of this pagan festival and teach the children, but i know we will have a 'fancy dress' day with children making spiders and zooming around on brooms.

 

What should i do, let them go ahead even though i find it totally inappropriate or give them guidelines about the 'true' halloween and suggest they plan around them or stick to my guns and say no!

 

I know that this is exactly the sort of thing that brings staff morale down and i do not like 'dictating' but i do feel quite strongly about the way in which they want to celebrate it.

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Hi Lucy!

 

Understand exactly where you are coming from!!

 

We have a pagan (Wicca) family in our DN, so I have absolutely no probs celebrating this. Our mum came in last year with various artefacts and the children (and adults, including her) had a wonderful morning discussing them. Samhain, to give it it's correct name (pronounced 'sow-ain', if anyone's not sure) is their major celebration, or Sabbat, so the family were thrilled that we featured it so prominently, having had bad experiences elsewhere. The fruit of this is that this year the approach of this festival is being greeted with excitement and knowledgable talk - bless!! They did learn something!!!!! - Pagans themselves dress up as all sorts of things, play games and face paint - adults too!! yay!! - as well as observing their rituals and 'serious' moments.

 

Please go ahead, but research the true meaning well, so no parents can get uptight. We had TONS of fun last year!!!!! :D:D

 

Sue :D

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I guess the compromise would be to let them do Halloween but research the true origins of it. But then it depends upon how strongly you felt about it - would you feel comfortable with this?

 

I said in the other thread that Halloween is quite a big thing up here in Scotland and is unavoidable. All the children in the village go out trick or treating from quite a young age, particularly if they have older brothers and sisters. However, the focus is not so much on the ghosts etc. Children are expected to 'do a turn' for their treat and the emphasis is on fun and families.

 

Try and think about the valuable learning the children may gain from it. I do think it gives you a good opportunity to talk about things you are afraid of (the dark and spiders are two common ones and easy to link in with Halloween). Some of my favourite books are also Funnybones, Meg and Mog, and Winnie the Witch. :D

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I'm just glad halloween happens during half term week for me, and thus, I can avoid it completely (apart from the trick or treaters who may or may not visit us: I always buy in sweets and chocs and nobody ever comes, but we've moved now, so that may change.)

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I think that the confusion comes from the Halloween celebrated in Scotland and that celebrated in the USA. I don't know about the one here in Europe, but certainly enough the one in the USA is far from any good.

 

I was raised in it and I don't find anything good about it. Trick or Treat... give me money/candies or I will do something naughty to you.... vandalism, spitting, yelling, so on. Dressed-up in scary things. Lots of times crazy people took the advantage of harming children that evening, like putting pieces of razor in the candies or things like that.

 

It was also the night of capturing animals and killing them to offer them to Satan and I am not saying about rumors, but of real situations. Route 66... California... The International Cult Day to Satan was established on Oct. 31, 1966 and has it's festivity on that day each year.

 

Probably the original festival of Halloween had nothing to do with this horrible North-American version.

 

Are the decorations sold related to this festivity? Do they have any relationship to it's origin? Personally, why should I promote a celebration that seems to bring only negative feelings? I am trying to promote better attitudes! :o

Edited by SmileyPR
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Guest ann waez

:o I tend to get around the halloween topic by incorporating it into our colour and light theme after half term,i use Winnie the Witch and Room on a Broom, its always popular and stimulates plenty of language,making potions etc Ann :)

I think that the confusion comes from the Halloween celebrated in Scotland and that celebrated in the USA.  I don't know about the one here in Europe, but certainly enough the one in the USA is far from any good. 

 

I was raised in it and I don't find anything good about it.  Trick or Treat... give me money/candies or I will do something naughty to you.... vandalism, spitting, yelling, so on.  Dressed-up in scary things.  Lots of times crazy people took the advantage of harming children that evening, like putting pieces of razor in the candies or things like that. 

 

It was also the night of capturing animals and killing them to offer them to Satan and I am not saying about rumors, but of real situations.  Route 66... California... The International Cult Day to Satan was established on Oct. 31, 1966 and has it's festivity on that day each year. 

 

Probably the original festival of Halloween had nothing to do with this horrible North-American version.

 

Are the decorations sold related to this festivity?  Do they have any relationship to it's origin?  Personally, why should I promote a celebration that seems to bring only negative feelings?  I am trying to promote better attitudes!  xD

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Smiley, the Pagans I have met are lovely, caring, friendly people who want just to live their own way and not be compared to all the nasty things you have described. Their children are wonderfully individual, independent and self-assured - a real credit!

 

There is a website you could look at to find out about their beliefs - I think it's called paganfed or something, or there's one that is for pagans local to me, called goddesscamp, I think. Try them?

 

Sue :D

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I am a curious breed - someone with both Christian AND Pagan beliefs! Weird I know, sorry!

 

I am so so pleased to read Sue R is celebrating it properly. I have to be really careful as a lot of my Christian friends are of the 'suffer all witches to die - it says so in the Bible' ilk. However, as Sue rightly said, Samhain (also prounced Sow een, just so you know :o ) is the major festival and is when the dead are HONOURED not feared. It is believed that the veil between our world and that of those passed on is at its thinnest and the lights (pumpkin lanterns) are to guide the spirits away from our homes and back to their own.

The dressing up started to scare away any udesirable spirits I think and that developed into people dressing up to pretend to be said spirits and trick or treating was born!

For Samhain at home we have a special meal with an extra place set for our loved ones who are no longer with us. We talk about what we remember about them and look at photos. Sometimes we laugh, sometimes we cry... xD

 

We also decorate our house, dress up and have sweets for the trick or treaters as in my opinion, the local kids don't really know what it's all about and don't mean any harm - where I live they have no tricks just treats!!

 

As to settings. I would LOVE to introduce the true Samhain - why not? We do Diwali, Hannukah etc and have no Asian or Jewish children... But my staff have enough trouble getting their head around the true meaning of Christmas, God bless 'em!!!

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Thanks Sue!

 

That is what I meant. If we find the true origins, explain it well and celebrate it with the proper decorations and so on... then it does not end up like what is being celebrated in the USA xD . Sadly enough that is what happens with lots of celebrations, they end up being something else.

 

Pandamonium... I am totally against the horrible idea of burning witches :o . It is a pity that people take beliefs to extremes. It just goes against the own faith! "Do not kill" is a base in all of the mayor faiths (Christianity, Jewish, Muslim).

 

Christmas... it seems it is more Santa Claus or Father Christmas than the real celebration of Christ's birth.

 

Indeed, when we do celebrations, we should investigate their true meanings.

 

Thanks, girls, for taking your time to share with us and helping us understand better things that have been 'turned around' in other parts of the world.

 

Have a nice week :) !

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