Christmas in Canada

Barley Toys and Chicken Bones

You would say “Joyeux Noël!” to wish someone “Merry Christmas” in French-speaking countries, such as France, Canada, and some African countries.

The information in this blog was taken from the book “Merry Christmas Everywhere, by Arlene Erlbach with Herb Erlbach.

I am giving you basic information on Christmas and how it is celebrated in Canada. I cannot capture each family’s individual traditions.

I have also provided you with an art project for your classroom and information that you can implement into your curriculum so that your students will learn a little about how other countries celebrate Christmas.

If the children live in Eastern Canada, they might get barley toys and chicken bones in their stockings. Barley toys are red and yellow hard candy and chicken bones are cinnamon-flavored hard candy filled with chocolate. These candies are only sold during the Christmas Holidays in Eastern Canada, and are shaped like Santa Claus or toys.

In America, children can get a variety of items in their stockings; which can include, candy, small toys, gift cards and even cookies.

See if any of your students are from Canada; ask their family if they still follow their Canadian traditions. If they do, schedule a time for them to visit your classroom and talk to your students about how they celebrate Christmas. Then see if they can help you make the candy with your students.

You can also bring in hard candy on a stick; show it to your students and explain that it is one of the things that Canadian children get in their stockings. Explain to your students the names they use to describe the candy.

“Merry Christmas Everywhere,” has provided a recipe that is similar to the hard candy that is made in Canada.

What you will need:

A saucepan

One cup of water

6-ounce box of red and yellow gelatin dessert mix

A wooden spoon

8-inch (20-cm) square pan

Cookie cutters

Craft sticks

What to do:

  1.  (Adults) Boil water, remove from stove and put the gelatin into the water. Stir well until the gelatin crystals disappear.
  2. Pour the gelatin mixture into the pan.
  3. Place the pan with the gelatin mixture into the refrigerator for about three hours.
  4. When the gelatin mixture is set, use the cookie cutters to cut out shapes from the gelatin.
  5. Insert a craft stick into each shape.

*They won’t be hard like the barley toys, but wiggly instead*

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