Washington DC 6th-graders craft Pinoy parols for Christmas activity

Washington DC Pinoy parols
Sixth-graders from DCPS Excel Academy learned more about Christmas traditions in the Philippines through the Embassy Adoption Program (EAP). Photo from Washington PE shows Ja’Lynn, Viakyia, and Imaiya, the winners of the parol-making activity.

Sixth-graders from Washington DC Public School’s (DCPS) Excel Academy took part in various activities about Philippine culture and tradition, including an interactive Pinoy parol lantern-making tutorial for the holidays.

Keisha Hopkins’ all-girls class was introduced to the Philippines with several presentations that are part of the Embassy Adoption Program (EAP) for this school year through the Philippine Embassy’s partnership with Sentro Rizal Washington DC.

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The virtual learning sessions for the girls were held via Microsoft Teams. Prior to the parol-making activity, the students engaged in interactive discussions and Q&A games regarding the history, culture, language, food, and national symbols of the Philippines.

An instructional video for the do-it-yourself Christmas lantern-making activity was also presented to the class as craft kits to make the parols were sent to the school for the next online session.

The session held on December 15, 2020, focused on the significance of Christmas celebrations in the Philippines including the Simbang Gabi (early dawn mass), Christmas carols, and the parol (Christmas lantern) which are also made by San Fernando, Pampanga craftsmen every year for the brightest holiday event in the Philippines, the Giant Lantern Festival.

The sixth-grade students of DCPS Excel Academy talked about how they made the parols themselves and the different ways their own families celebrate Christmas. Prizes were given by the Embassy to the top three winners with the best parol Christmas lanterns.

Established in 1974, the EAP is a unique partnership education program of DCPS and the Washington Performing Arts that exposes DCPS students to international perspectives and cross-cultural lessons.

Disney’s new video tutorial is teaching fans around the globe how to create festive Filipino Parol lanterns inspired by the viral tearjerker Christmas advert “From Our Family To Yours” featuring the Philippines released ahead of the holiday season.

If you want to feel more festive, check out these Christmas Lights Shows You Can Watch Online with your loved ones in the safety of your own home.

SEND CHEERS in the comments below to the Philippine Embassy and Sentro Rizal Washington DC for teaching more people around the globe to appreciate Filipino Christmas traditions!

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Margo is a voracious reader - some might even say she reads too much for her own good. She majored in BS Psychology and hopes to become a forensic psychologist one day. She’s also an aspiring writer, mental health advocate, and a staunch believer of equality.