The festivities of the Christmas season have made their way into our environments and into our hearts at The Heart School. Our spaces are infused with seasonal and beautiful special treasures that only come out for this season, allowing the children to build beautiful memories and magical anniversaries of the heart. Festive ornaments bring life and celebration in as we warm up in this summer season and wind down our year.
Believe in the magic of the season.
Whilst we believe in the magic of Christmas, we do have to question if it is "OK" to openly celebrate this season? Even though we leave the religion out to show respect for the many religious views our community may have, is it overstepping the line of what is appropriate? Is it putting one festivity over all others in a year, and is that "OK"? Is it OK to alter the environment temporarily in a way that may create a disturbance among the children, when most often consistency and calm is what we are aiming for? In a society when unfortunately children may be lacking in adult presence but not presents, is it OK to promote a holiday that for many is more about consumerism than anything else? There are so many reasons to ask if it is OK, and it is our responsibility to consider them all.
At The Heart School we have decided that for the five or so reasons we could leave Christmas out, we can give you many more reasons why we have chosen to embrace the season and let it in. Multiple pairs of eyes, multiple little hearts, multiple wee souls spending their days away from home!
Children need to absorb the beauty, charm and cultural significance of holiday celebrations.
We are very passionate that children who are in long childcare do not get 'ripped off from life' and Christmas is where this can so easily happen. We have a reason to allow our children to feel the joy of this special season. It is called LIFE. REAL LIFE! Children need magical moments that give them anniversaries of the heart. They don't need political correctness, or to tread on egg shells at the risk of offending someone. Our children need magic and wonder. They don't need us to respond with our over thinking adult brain, but with our own child like hearts. We were children once and our memories took place in a different time, not likely with hours spent in the care of others and away from home. We were immersed in life, and this is what our children still need, despite the changes in society and family circumstances.
You can't sprinkle Christmas magic without some magic in your heart.
If we have forgotten how it feels to be that child, we can just imagine from looking at the children's' responses - their involuntary gasps as they first come through the gate and walk into a place full of magic. The only evidence we ever need is that which comes purely from the children's hearts.
The magic for children is a gift to adults and a gentle reminder to keep life full of joyous magical moments. We see these beautiful displays and remember that Christmas is more than a stressful day in the kitchen, a credit card bill or difficulty juggling work and children on holiday.
We can choose!
If we 'feel' Christmas rather than just 'do' it we know it is about love and kindness, family and giving. These values are important all year round of course, but Christmas tends to bring them to the fore. We have to remember that there is a lot our children can't choose or have control over for themselves. But we can choose. We can choose to keep Christmas in our hearts, and more importantly, we can choose to keep the spirit of childhood in our hearts. In this way, even when we go against the grain, and everyone's idea of "OK", it is always with entirely honourable and heartfelt intentions.