Sunday, November 11, 2007

All about Martinstag

Update: Don't miss our St. Martin's Day Unit Study!

Thanks to Thea Fortune for contributing this great compilation on Martinstag.

St. Martins Day (Martinstag) is celebrated on November 11 in many parts of Europe. St. Martin was a Roman soldier who helped the poor, was martyred and became a Catholic saint.

Some of the symbols of St. Martins are lanterns, geese, and Weckm√§nner. In many areas, the community participates in a parade around the town or neighborhood, with the children carrying lit lanterns through the dark November evening. Traditionally lanterns were lit by candles, but people also use glow sticks and battery powered “candles”.

For more information about Martinstag and St. Martin check out Zzzebra ( and the other websites listed below.

Many ideas for lanterns can be found on:

Heiliger Martin ( - 7 different styles, including one out of a paper bag, one using “k√§seschachtel” and another from papermache. The easiest lanterns I’ve seen take the coloring pages from this site, make them into a tube, and place a strip of black construction paper or black posterboard at the top and bottom – punch holes in the top to run a string through. ( ( – many kid friendly activities including a variety of lanterns.

ZZZebra ( – lots of seasonally appropriate activities for kids including a “laternen-werkstatt”.

While on parade, it’s fun to sing simple folksongs such as “Laterne, Laterne”, and “Ich geh’ mit meiner Laterne”

Goose is often served for dinner on Martinstag, and Heiliger Martin has several appropriate recipes ( .

Recipe for Weckman is on Zzzebra, which is fun to do with your kids :

1 comment:

Thea said...

I forgot to mention another website in English ( . They have a great explanation of Martinstag. Every month they offer new recipes and information about foods, drinks, culture and traditions in Germany.