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Fairy Night

By Alexandra Eder, 2006 2:59 minutes

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Alexandra describes the tradition in her family of all her cousins gathering with their grandmother to face the prospect of Black Pete's visit. She conveys the suspense and thrill of this event from a child's point of view. Although Alexandra's grandmother has died, her family has vowed to continue the tradition.

Collection Western Stories: Expressions for the Future


What family and cultural traditions will we pass on?

Alexandra describes the suspense of waiting for Black Pete’s visit.

  • Who is Black Pete?
  • What culture is this childhood character derived from? Does the grandmother’s title ‘Oma’ give a clue about its origins?
  • What do you call your grandmother and grandfather?
  • What are your grandparents’ and parents’ cultural backgrounds? What childhood traditions have they handed on?

Characters that steal children? Fairies that rescue? Many fairytales and cultural legends have both good and bad characters.

  • Why do you think children’s tales are so full of good and evil?
  • Create a novel, interesting fairytale with contemporary characters that contains a moral about good and bad.

Alexandra laughs, “There is always an apple that no-one ever eats”. Some childhood behaviours seem universal, no matter what culture.

  • Create a list of things that many children throughout the world have in common.
  • What childhood fantasies appear to be universal, no matter what culture?

Alexandra asserts, “My family is determined to continue the tradition of coming together and being excited by what the night will bring.”

  • What childhood traditions did you enjoy most?
  • What traditions would you like to pass on to the next generation?

Traditions and culture change over time. You might be the first to create a new tradition.

  •     What tradition would you to invent to pass on to the next generation?