It’s apparently a tradition to celebrate Carnaval (Carnival) in French schools (Maternelle & Elementary). This fun occasion is when all the kids dress up and parade around. I equate it to the Spring-time Halloween but without going door to door to get candy. For the Maternelle, parents were invited to come for the last hour of school and watch the parade and afterwards share a snack with them. This was done on the last Friday before vacation. I think the exact date of Carnival celebration is closer to mid-March – but with our Winter vacation falling the first 2 weeks of March, this event was pushed up this year. Our town has a separate Carnaval parade and family celebration coming up at the end of vacation on the 16th and the City of Bordeaux is celebrating it’s Carnival on Sunday March 17th.
What I love about this is that the kids and the teachers make their costumes for carneval . This year the Maternelle celebrated with the theme of “Faire Peur” – or to make afraid or to scare – for the kids they were told they were going to scare away Winter! What a fun theme! It was so impressed with how creative these teachers were in making the costumes. It’s also nice as a parent to not have to go out and buy a costume just for a hour celebration. (At the elementary level, they have a party at the end of the school day without parents – but in costumes – enjoying getting dressed up and of course enjoying candy!).
For my daughter’s class – the boys were Dragons and the girls Witches. You can see from the photos that giant paper bags were used for the costume. I learned that my 5 year old and her class painted their own costumes and then taped on the black designs following a model. They then stapled together colored construction paper and cut out a ring to create their witches hat. I think they turned out wonderful !
Other classes were monsters & cobwebs …so darn cute!
And yes, I think they did scare away Winter….the first part of this Winter break has been very Spring like and sunny. (Then again it is March – but it’s so nice to see the sun again after months of rain and clouds!).