Since 2009 my family and I have celebrated Michaelmas with a week of activities which include; crafts, games, dressing up and story time and every year I post this guide so that you can join the fun with us!
I first posted this activity guide on my blog nearly ten years ago after crafting it together with the help of my two oldest children who were then just six and three!
It’s amazing to think that those little boys are now 15 and 12 years-old AND that God has blessed us with four more children!
Since I first published this it has been shared around the world and well loved by homemaking moms as well as Waldorf teachers who have brought it into the classroom and I am so pleased!
They have saved it, shared it, downloaded it and Pinned it. However, I would caution you, if you would like to Pin this guide please make a copy and Pin the copy or take screen shots. My website is banned from Pinterest. Conservative homemakers are not welcome there. You may lose your account by Pinning my content.
I have shared the updated version of this guide, on my blog, for nearly a decade now! I have always offered this guide for free, each year, since I created it and I encourage you to share it as much as you would like.
Fall Equinox falls one week prior to the Christian celebration of Michaelmas. These two holidays are often celebrated in similar fashions, with harvest feasts and various fall merriment.
Michaelmas; also known as the Feast of Saints Michael, Gabriel, Uriel and Raphael, the Feast of the Archangels, or the Feast of Saint Michael and All Angels, is a time -as the days grow shorter- to reflect on our inner strength that helps us over come the darkness in the world.
The first ingredient in our week of fun is the story. Told in eight parts, the story brings to life the changing of the seasons and weaves these changes into a brave narrative of one boy’s defeat of a mighty dragon.
To join our celebration simply read the eight parts of the story guide and then expand the story line yourself as long or short as you like. Add places, names, descriptions and details. Be sure to tell the story to your children without reading it from a page, look at them, really engage them.
Older children can have fun helping you flesh out the details of your story so that it truly becomes a narrative that is special and enduring to your family and can be shared year after year.
I dress up as Sir George with a knitted knight hat and red silk cape when I tell the tale. Be sure and tell the story early on in the day so you have time for the craft or activity I have suggested to accompany the narrative.
If you’re artistic use paper and crayons, paint, chalk or whatever to create a picture to go along with each day’s story. Encourage your children to create impromptu artwork about the story as well.
I’ve also created a list of things you will need for your week long celebration, don’t worry, it’s all very simple!
Supplies for the Week:
Local vegetables (to bake or steam)
Local, grass fed meat
Candles and candle holders or gourds and candles
Leaves (don’t worry if they haven’t turned yet, that’s OK)
Paper and crayon for leaf rubbings
Clay Ingredients – Baking soda, corn starch
Silks, scarves or blankets for a cape
Cardboard, scissors, tape
Cookie ingredients or prepared sugar cookie dough
Saturday, September 22nd, Fall Equinox
Story guide: Begin by telling of an ancient land where all the people in the land (Mother Nature’s Realm, Avalon, maybe the city where you live or ?) are harvesting their crops and hold a big feast. Tell the children what kind of crops the people grew (based maybe on your local foods) and how the mothers and daughters careful prepared the food in big hot ovens built by the fathers and grandfathers.
Activity: Prepare a simple harvest dinner using your local veggies and grass fed meats. As a family, talk about where the food came from, who grew it and who harvested it.
Sunday, September 23rd
Story Guide: In our ancient land, where last night we heard about the harvest and the feast, The Sun has decided that he’s tired of shinning all day long during these long, drawn out, summer days and the people no longer really need him to grow their food since the harvest so he asks the Angels to make the days shorter for a while so he can get more rest.
Activity: Set out candles in your home in anticipation of Father Sun’s long naps or carve gourd lanterns.
Monday, September 24th
Story Guide: Sister Wind grows chilly without the Sun around all day. She blows and blows to warm up, the way that running around can make you all hot and sweaty, but all her blowing just makes the leaves very cold. The cold leaves have the idea of trying to warm up by turning the colors of fire.
Activity: Leaf rubbings
Tuesday, September 25th
Story Guide: But turning the colors of fire does no good, the leaves are still cold and slowly they drop one by one to the ground. Some of the fire leaves fall upon a huge mound of earth and magically they become the scales on the back of a mighty dragon! The dragon immediately begins doing what dragons naturally do, he ravages villages and eats fair maidens, hissing big clouds of fire and smoke through the sky!
Activity: Rake up some leaves into a pile, pretend it’s a dragon. Give him a scary name. If you don’t have leaves work with what you have; straw, a mound of dirt, a tree stump or a pile of laundry. To get even more creative make a papier-mâché head or tail.
Wednesday, September 26th
Story Guide: The dragon frightens Mother Night and she is too scared to let the moon come out. The people know that without the moon there will be no winter night light for the hibernating animals and without a long winter nap the animals and seeds will not have energy to grow next spring. So the people ask their angels to help them.
Activity: Make clay angel ornaments using this recipe. Bake them with ribbon inside and a loop at the top. Hang your angels on the trees outside to protect you from the dragon (or inside if your dragon is a pile of laundry).
Tuesday, September 27th
Story Guide: The Angels agree that something must be done. They send a magic cape and sword to a young boy named George and knight him, Sir George, the brave knight of the Angels. He is afraid but he accepts the challenge to fight the dragon.
Activity: Make a stick or cardboard sword
Friday, September 28th
Story Guide: George and his magic cape and sword chase the dragon all around the earth, up into heaven and back. He fights many mighty battles. He fights the dragon in water, over a bridge, up a tall tower, in a field. George is tired, he doesn’t think he can go on. George prays and asks God for inner strength the courage to save his people.
Activity: Make a cape. You can get fancy and use silk scarves that you dye naturally or simply use a cut up sheet, blanket or scarf.
Saturday, September 29th, Michaelmas!
Story Guide: God sends The Angel Michael to George and the Angel Michael tells George about the war in heaven and how he helped win the battle that ended in Lucifer being cast out of heaven. Through Michaels example, George gains new strength to slay the mighty dragon. He corners the dragon between two large boulders and victoriously defeats him. All the people are happy and bake good things to eat and give them to the brave George.
*Don’t be tempted to think this tale as too violent for young ones. Children view the world and death differently than we do as adults. The simple triumph of slaying the dragon will not translate into violent animal murdering adults, I promise. Fairy tales speak to the soul and part of that magic is the death of the evil in the story. This empowers children to believe they can conquer their own woes, putting them to “death.”
Activity: Dress the family up and act out the whole story, bake sugar cookies cut them out to look like dragons, swords, angels, etc., read Revelations Chapter 12. Go on a dragon hunt. My family goes to the same place every year, a park with natural cave formations, and we explore, hunting for dragon tracks in the dirt to see if we can find him.
You can follow my family’s Michaelmas adventures on my Instagram account (link in the side bar)
Have a great autumn!
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