Christmas USA

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Overview

From the snow and mistletoe of New England to the festival lights of the Southwest, Christmas across the USA is celebrated with many rich and meaningful traditions. Whether it's foresting Christmas trees in Wisconsin, taking an elk sleigh ride in Wyoming, or decorating a gingerbread cottage in the White House, the nation's favorite holiday has something for everyone.

Here the creators of Christmas Around the World present a collection of American Christmas traditions and history...

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Overview

From the snow and mistletoe of New England to the festival lights of the Southwest, Christmas across the USA is celebrated with many rich and meaningful traditions. Whether it's foresting Christmas trees in Wisconsin, taking an elk sleigh ride in Wyoming, or decorating a gingerbread cottage in the White House, the nation's favorite holiday has something for everyone.

Here the creators of Christmas Around the World present a collection of American Christmas traditions and history that will fill your heart with the joy of the season. With fun facts, crafts, and recipes, they treat you to a nationwide Yuletide celebration and offer many tips and suggestions for creating heartwarming memories for your own family and friends.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
From the Northeast to the Great Lakes to the Pacific States, Christmas USA by Mary D. Lankford, illus. by Karen Dugan, teaches readers the customs of Americans around the country, with fun facts, recipes and crafts galore. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Sharon Salluzzo
Climate and cultures have played significant roles in how Christmas is celebrated across the United States. Lankford divides the United States into seven regions and presents the history of the Christmas celebrations in each area. She also includes a contemporary celebration, sometimes naming a specific city and its festivities. The rest of the book is devoted to a history of Christmas in the White House, Christmas stamps, and activities and crafts. The text-dense single page devoted to a region of the county might be off-putting to some readers. However, Lankford writes in a friendly tone. She includes interesting tidbits on the White House Christmas trees and celebrations by several presidential families. She is clear on the influence of specific immigrant groups who brought their traditions with them as they settled in a new land. Directions for crafts, such as pomanders, cascarones, greeting cards, and garlands are clear and are accompanied by illustrations. The recipes for nut crescent cookies, Bizchochitos, "Colonists' Scripture Cake," and other oven recipes do not include warnings for using oven mitts when taking the hot items out of the oven. Readers will enjoy finding popular toys on the toy time line. While some children will find this of interest, this useful introduction to the history of Christmas will probably be most helpful for teachers and parents. Includes a map of the United States and an index.
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-As in the author's Christmas around the World (HarperCollins, 1995), this book features full pages of text opposite illustrations showing regional observances (Northeast, Southeast, Pacific States, etc.). Multicultural influences are included in a conversational, sometimes fragmented narrative. Useful and interesting end matter includes "Christmas at the White House" and at the post office, (genuinely) "Fun Things to Do," crafts, recipes, and a time line of toys from 1859 (cap guns) to 1997 (PlayStation).-Susan Patron, Los Angeles Public Library Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Lankford and Dugan have collaborated on previous volumes about Christmas and birthday traditions around the world. In this disjointed effort, the author divides the U.S. into seven broad regions, presenting one page of historical, social and geographic information for that region, including commentary on Christmas traditions that relate to that region. This approach is problematic due to the inclusion of information that has nothing to do with Christmas, while leaving out major traditions such as taking children to visit Santa Claus, hanging up stockings or enjoying classic Christmas stories, poems and plays. Additional sections cover the history of the holiday at the White House and in the postal system, with added pages of activities and crafts. A recipe for Scripture Cake is included, and a few Bible verses are oddly incorporated into the text, although the custom of attending church on Christmas Eve is barely mentioned. The final spread is a timeline of commercial American toys. Dugan's illustrations are bright and cheerful, with the cover showing smiling children waving American flags around a Christmas tree decorated in red, white and blue. (bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 6-9)
Booklist
“Warm and cheery...A pleasant and useful addition to Christmas collections.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688150129
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/26/2006
  • Pages: 48
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Mary D. Lankford is the former director of library services for the Texas Education Agency and has received many awards, among them the Texas Library Association Distinguished Service Award. The author of informational books for children, including Christmas USA, Christmas Around the World, and Jacks Around the World, she travels across the country conducting workshops on libraries and children's literature. She lives in Austin, Texas.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 27, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Jennifer Wardrip, aka "The Genius" for Kids @ TeensReadToo.com

    CHRISTMAS USA is more than just a book of facts. Although the author has broken up the United States into several parts--Northeast, Southeast, Great Lakes, Plains, Southwest, Mountain, and Pacific--this is a book perfect for children and adults alike, regardless of where in the USA you reside. Filled with such interesting facts as when Christmas trees became part of the US tradition, when Christmas was first declared a legal holiday, and which US President instituted an official tree in the White House, CHRISTMAS USA presents these facts in a fun, interesting way. <BR/><BR/>It's not just a book of facts, though. It's also filled with hands-on activities such as how to make a Christmas Journal, making your own Christmas cards, how to make cranberry or popcorn garland, easy directions for cookie Christmas tree ornaments, and creating a pomander and cascarones. It also includes some tasty, easy-to-follow recipes for aniseed cookies, nut crescents, and scripture cake, to name a few. <BR/><BR/>This is a great book to share with your children. Not only will they learn about different holiday customs and traditions around the US, but they'll be able to follow the easy instructions for the crafts and activities and, with adult supervision, might even be able to whip up some yummy holiday treats for the whole family!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 28, 2006

    Facts, Activities, and Recipes Perfect for Christmas

    CHRISTMAS USA is more than just a book of facts. Although the author has broken up the United States into several parts--Northeast, Southeast, Great Lakes, Plains, Southwest, Mountain, and Pacific--this is a book perfect for children and adults alike, regardless of where in the USA you reside. Filled with such interesting facts as when Christmas trees became part of the US tradition, when Christmas was first declared a legal holiday, and which US President instituted an offical tree in the White House, CHRISTMAS USA presents these facts in a fun, interesting way. It's not just a book of facts, though. It's also filled with hands-on activities such as how to make a Christmas Journal, making your own Christmas cards, how to make cranberry or popcorn garland, easy directions for cookie Christmas tree ornaments, and creating a pomander and cascarones. It also includes some tasty, easy-to-follow recipes for aniseed cookies, nut crescents, and scripture cake, to name a few. This is a great book to share with your children. Not only will they learn about different holiday customs and traditions around the US, but they'll be able to follow the easy instructions for the crafts and activities and, with adult supervision, might even be able to whip up some yummy holiday treats for the whole family!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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