This school year we have been learning about American girl history with my American Girl study guides. So far we have learned about Native Americans with Kaya, Colonial America with Felicity, the American Frontier with Josefina, and Pioneer America with Kirsten.
This holiday season we are excited to slow down our school days and work our way through An American Girl Christmas. This study guide offers a history through Christmas in America with 6 different mini units for 6 of the American Girls (Josefina, Kirsten, Addy, Samantha, Molly, and Kit.) Each girl has their own Christmas story you will read together, craft options, a recipe, and an act of service, with a little bit of history throughout. With this guide you do not have to complete every girls mini unit, but you are able to choose which girls you would like to study and what activities you have the time for. It is simple and easy to accomplish this holiday season, bringing you together to make meaningful connections and memories.
When I was creating the guide, I based it off the amazing American Girl Holiday Treasury that is full of all the Christmas stories for each of the girls. (You do not need to have this book to complete the Christmas guide. You can use the individual Christmas stories for whichever girls you plan to learn about.) When I was done, I realized Felicity was the only story left out of the treasury, I’m not sure for what reason.
So for those of you who are using my American Girl Christmas Guide and wanting to do a study on Felicity also, I thought I would add some links and ideas here that you can complete to go along with her Christmas story.
Felicity: Christmastide in Colonial America
Christmas in Colonial America was a big celebration with many parties, feasts, and dancing. Christmastide began on Christmas Day and ended on January 5th. Christmas Day was spent going to church and having a big feast afterwards, and many men went fox hunting. Wealthier colonists would show off their wealth with lavish balls, big feasts, and dancing parties for days on end. Christmas celebrations were mostly for adults instead of children, but Felicity is excited to be invited to her first dance at the Governor’s palace in her story Felicity’s Surprise.
If you choose to learn about Felicity this Christmas I suggest reading Felicity’s Surprise by Valerie Tripp, as well as the “Looking Back” section in the back of the book for more history on Christmas in Colonial Virginia. There is also a movie called Felicity: An American Girl Adventure. This is such a cute movie all about Felicity, and it ends with her Christmas story.
Here are some activities or crafts you could do together after reading Felicity’s Surprise. (Click on the photo to take you to the blog post with directions.)
Yule Logs were a big tradition during the holidays. They were giant logs that were a burned for days in the hearths of colonists homes during the holiday season. Create your own simple Yule log as a centerpiece for your Christmas table.
Greenery such as holly and mistletoe were popular ways to decorate homes in Virginia during Christmas. Felicity’s mother, Mrs. Merriman, loved to decorate with holly and loved it’s bright red berries. Here are some crafts to create your own holly or mistletoe.
During Felicity’s time, America was on the brink of war with England to become its own nation. The Revolutionary War began in 1776. George Washington actually made his famous cross across the Delaware River on Christmas Day of 1776. When Washington Crossed the Delaware by Lynne Cheney is a great picture book you could read about this event. Create one of these fun American flag ornaments to represent the birth of the United States of America.
In the story Felicity’s Surprise, Felicity is invited to her first dance at the Governor’s Palace. She learns proper dancing lessons in her classes with Miss Manderly. Watch these YouTube videos and learn a proper curtsy or colonial dance:
– How to Curtsey: https://youtu.be/Sp6IrThVC0A
– How to Dance a Minuet: https://youtu.be/rR5s339qbC4 (A minuet is a slow, stately ballroom dance popular in the 18th century.)
– Watch an upbeat Colonial Dance: https://youtu.be/URU1EXECmIE
Here are some recipes you can bake together. In Felicity’s Surprise, Felicity and Elizabeth bake Shrewsbury Cakes (cookies) together. These were a popular buttery-English cookie that were shared together during the holidays. Raspberry tarts were another festive dessert they served in colonial times. OR create this fun edible version of the tradition of a Yule log.
I hope you enjoy some of these activities together if you choose to learn and read about Christmas with Felicity. Be sure to share all the wonderful moments with me on Instagram 🥰
For all the other American Girl Christmas guides check out An American Girl Christmas!