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Wineberry Wood Press

Winter Solstice: Celebrating the Longest Night by Wineberry Wood Press

Winter Solstice: Celebrating the Longest Night by Wineberry Wood Press

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“Winter Solstice: Celebrating the Longest Night” is a great winter resource. It is designed to be used by families, students, and even adults-- there are opportunities for learning, fun rabbit holes to scamper down, and new ways of looking at winter traditions. This guide can be used to celebrate the solstice, learn in and out of the classroom, and/or establish seasonal traditions with your family. You can spread these activities out over the whole winter, the month of December, or focus on just a few the week of the Winter Solstice and try others next year.

The first half of this guide is all about reveling in the dark. With lights and cell phones constantly at our fingertips, we often forget that we can see in the dark and there is magic to behold. Flip the guide over and begin reading from the other side to celebrate the promise of light. Where the two sections meet in the middle you’ll find a bonfire, an ancient symbol of light in the darkness. (If you don’t plan to print this unit out, I have provided both sections separately so you don’t have to try and read upside down!) You’ll find an extensive booklist for all ages separated by subject and I encourage you to read some of the adult books even if you only plan to work with young children, they are fantastic. Spread things out, add in your own traditions or start new ones. Use this unit as a springboard for learning or just for fun, the choices are yours to make. 

This guide starts with the science behind the solstice, and different cultural traditions surrounding the Winter Solstice and then walks through information projects and tutorials to celebrate both the dark and the promise of light. Each half has 4 sections with two projects and there are two extra projects in the center for a total of 18 different crafts, games, recipes, and traditions to celebrate. In the first half, Revel in the Night, you’ll find information about nocturnal animals, the night sky, how people and animals see at night light pollution, and dreams. In the second section, the Promise of Light, we’ll look at all things warm and cozy, learn about why shadows get longer on the Winter Solstice, study evergreen winter plants, dormant plants, and the secret promise of spring and how different cultures mark the shortest day of the year. 

You'll receive a 88-page e-book featuring background information, tutorials with crafts, recipes, games, and more, lesson seeds for further exploration, printables, and book lists.

This unit study is multidisciplinary, allowing you to explore different areas of core content, arts, nature, and culture within the same project. (Core content: science, social studies, math and ela) 

Table of Contents:


What is the Winter Solstice

How to use this guide


Nocturnal Animals

   EXPLORE: Nocturnal Hike

   PLAY: Owl Cache Night Hunt

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration:


   CREATE: Star Stories

   FEAST: Star Gazing Picnic

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration

Night Vision

   CREATE: Glow in the Dark Mushroom Ink

   EXPLORE: Slow Down

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration

Dreaming in the Dark

   FEAST: Sweet Dreams Nocturnal Picnic

   CREATE: Lucid Dream Salve

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration


   GATHER: Tending a Fire

   CREATE: Storytelling Bag


Winter Warmth

   CREATE: Snowflake Lanterns

   FEAST: Sun Tarts

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration

Ever Green

   GATHER: Collecting Resin collecting

   FEAST: Forest Chai

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration

Looking towards the Light

   EXPLORE: Winter Sowing 

   CREATE: Bayberry Candles

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration

Marking the Shortest Day

   EXPLORE: Solstice spiral

   PLAY: Troll Houses

   Lesson Seeds/ Further Exploration


About the Author

All files are formatted for 8.5x11 paper. These files can be printed at home, at your local print shop, or with your favorite online printer. You can also use them in their digital form. 

I do my best to portray colors accurately, however, different monitors will vary in how they display colors. Items in photos are for display only, they are not included.

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