Holidays like St Patricks Day give humans an opportunity to get out of the mundane, "let their hair down," and escape the stress of everyday life.
And it follows logically that after the Irish influx into America, they wanted to celebrate a sacred day in their homeland.
Today's commercial celebration of this holiday is often distracting, but with a bit o' knowledge; perhaps, we can take this opportunity to learn about some of the important contributions the Irish have made to society --and have some fun too.
The video below is a 2-hour BBC production of how the Irish saved civilization. It dispels the mistaken idea that it was the British who civilized the world.
It links the story of a young boy named Patrick who was taken into slavery by Irish marauders, escaped, only to return and convert Ireland to Christianity.
Upon watching these episodes, I would suggest dividing them into four 30-minute parts during the week.
I also would suggest that you connect your computer to your television so that your children can enjoy the beautiful scenery of Ireland. Be sure to notice all the rock walls in Ireland.
Here are other short, educational videos about "All Things Irish."
Disclaimer: It is impossible to fully cover on this curriculum page the many, many important Irish authors who have contributed to the world's literature; that said, here are three of the more important widely known writers.
Oscar Wilde - wrote The Picture of Dorian Gray, which is an important moral tale and a humorous play, The Importance of Being Earnest.
James Joyce - An early 20th century novelist and poet wrote Ulysses. This work is compared to Homer's Odyssey.
George Bernard Shaw is probably best known for Pygmalion or the musical, My Fair Lady.
C.S. Lewis is the very respected author of the Chronicles of Narnia, and The Screwtape Letters.
It's a humor thing, it's a sarcastic thing, and it's a St Patricks Day thing!
Here are a few quotes and maxims that I found meaningful. I can't say they are the greatest; they're simply ones that I like. However, since I'm only 25 percent Irish, you may only find one in four to be meaningful.
"Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their own." - Jonathan Swift
"There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about." - Oscar Wilde
“Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.”- W. B. Yeats
Even an Irish curse has a bit of humor in it.
May those who love us love us.
And those that don't love us,
May God turn their hearts,
And if He doesn't turn their hearts,
May he turn their ankles,
So we'll know them by their limping.
An Irish Blessing
May your glass be ever full,
May the roof over your head be always strong,
And may you be in heaven
Half an hour before the devil knows you're dead.
The beautiful knot work of the Celtic letters is an excellent educational activity.
Grammar note to Parents: My website is hosted by sitesell.com, but it does not allow me to insert periods or apostrophes in my file names, so all these references to St. Patrick's Day have to be typed as St Patricks Day. I didn't want you to think I am illiterate. Be sure to visit my other holiday pages throughout the year.