Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Buddies~ St Brigids Day

***In September 2011 6 families got together and started Buddies Home School. Each week we meet in each other's home and follow a simple rhythm: movement and music, craft/ baking, snack time, free play and story time. Each part of the session is led by a different family. We are sharing this week's session with you here...***

Zoe led our music and movement session this morning. After our hello song we played a really great balancing game. The wooden blocks were stepping stones over a river and the children had to balance over them to rescue a teddy bear. They really enjoyed it and took turns beautifully.

After that Roisin told us the story of St Brigid. Today is St Brigid's Day, she is the female patron saint of Ireland. The part of the story we told the children was that she approached the King asking for some of his land upon which to build a convent. The King said no, Brigid then persuaded him to give her the land that she could spread her cloak over. The King agrees. Brigid spread her cloak and the corners of which spread throughout the Kingdom of Kildare and the King granted her the land as all the food and supplies she needed, as Brigid was clearly blessed by God.

We acted out Brigid spreading her cloak by unfolding a large sheet,

the land look so good!

so we decided to build Brigid a house on it.

The traditional activity on this day is to make a St Brigid's Cross. This is to be hung by the door of the house to protect it throughout the year.

Roisin had brought lots of pipe cleaners and showed us how to make one. Traditionally they are made of reeds, pulled, not cut, from the land and soaked to make them pliable.
You need 14 pipe cleaners.

Lay 2 in a cross and wrap one around the other to make the cross strong.
Take another pipe cleaner and bend it in half. Hook this over one of the legs.

Now turn your cross so that when you hook the next folded in half pipe cleaner you are trapping the 'legs' of the one you have just hooked on.

Keep turning and hooking on the pipe cleaners over the legs of the previous one.

To finished wrap the ends of the pipe cleaners together or secure them with another pipe cleaner.

As you can see this is actually not that simple to understand, it took me a good few times to see what we had to do. In fact it was just too difficult for our wee ones who needed too much help and they all wandered off having lost interest.

So we scrapped that idea, pushed the pipe cleaners aside and luckily Roisin had come prepared with paints and glass jars. We called the children back and they really enjoyed painting beautiful tea light holders.

Aren't they lovely, I can't wait to see what they look like with a little tea light flickering inside.

After snack time the kids got their coats on and spent their free play time running and chasing and digging in the garden.
While us mummies had a cup of tea and finished off the crosses. It's so great how flexible we can be, changing each session and activity to suit the mood and ability of the children (and mummies).

To end the session Amanda read one of my very favourite stories.

It was enjoyed by all :-)


  1. St Bridget came to my village in the 12th century (at least I think I have that right) and thus our church was built and the village apptley named after her St. Brides Major.
    We celebrated today in the local school, wearing green to represent Ireland and in traditional welsh way, the children sang and played music. They sang about the saints and about Jesus and read stories about St. bridget and reminded ourselves what an amazing saint she was and where she came from.
    It was supported by the parents and the elders of the village and we all tucked into tea and hot drinks afterwards. Truley lovely. :)

  2. I love this! Thanks for sharing your Brigit's day activities. This is definitely one of my favorite days, though I have been trying to think of ways to celebrate it with the kids, so thanks for the ideas. I made St. Brigit's crosses last year but it kind of took me a while to figure out ;) so maybe we can do the mantle story and the sheet...wonderful.

  3. Ah shit - can't believe we missed St Brigid's day. Only learnt about it last year, when Timmy came home from school singing " Sing a song for Brigid, Brigid brings the spring" it was so sweet!