La Purisima - Christmas Around the World for Kids - Nicaragua

This is the first activity in our Christmas Around the World for Kids series! Since we're in central America for our World Geography studies, we're starting there for our Christmas celebrations/lessons too! Today, we're looking at a tradition in Nicaragua!

Nicaragua is a small country in central America. You can see the red marking it below:

Since so many people in Nicaragua are either Catholic or have Catholic backgrounds, Christmas celebrations in Nicaragua often start on December 7th with La Purisima (Spanish for "the most pure" and "La GriterĂ­a" (Spanish for "the shouting").  

La Purisima celebrates the Virgin Mary with community-wide parades, fireworks, and singing. People will call out "What causes so much happiness?" And others will answer "The Conception of Mary!" 

Families and children go caroling and, after they sing at a home, they are given treats and gifts. Donuts (rosquillas) are a common treat, so I decided that for our "visit" to Nicaragua we would sing a Christmas carol and eat donuts!

Christmas Around the World for Kids: Nicaragua

I let the kids pick their own song to perform as a group (for me!) and, after they performed, they each got a few donuts. Obviously (from my picture above), my donuts were apple fritters. I did not make traditional Nicaraguan donuts, but we still enjoyed them and learned a new thing about a new country! You could make rosquillas or any other donut recipe OR even just give your kids candy and cookies to celebrate! The point is to learn about Christmas activities that kids are doing in other places around the world. I'll put the recipe I used below.

Like many families in the United States, Christmas Eve in Nicaragua is celebrated with a family dinner and sharing gifts. At midnight, fireworks are set off to celebrate the birth of Jesus.

After we ate our donuts, we put our Nicaragua "stamp" in our "passports!"

We are going to be learning about Christmas around the world this year with 12 different activities--this was the first one!  I would LOVE if you joined us!! I will be linking all the activities to THIS PAGE, so you can pick and choose which to do. There's also a link to get the passport that I made there (for free) and a giveaway that will run from December 1st-16th!  And, I'll be linking to a new Christmas Around the World for Kids activity each week day until all 12 are up!

Here's the donut recipe I used:

Note: This is not a Nicaraguan recipe--it's actually a no-sugar added apple fritter. You can find recipes for Nicaraguan rosquillas online, use my recipe, buy donuts from a shop, or give your kids a completely different treat for their singing!


** 4 apples (Cut the ends off and cores out. Then slice them so they look like donuts--shoot for about 4 slices from each apple.)

** 2-1/2 cups unbleached flour
** 2 tablespoons honey
** 2 tablespoons sugar-free syrup
** 1 teaspoon baking powder
** 2 teaspoons cinnamon
** 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
** 1/2 teaspoon allspice
** 1/2 teaspoon salt
** 1 egg
** 3 tablespoons almond milk
** 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

** 2 cups oil for frying
** sugar-free syrup or powdered sugar substitute for topping

How to Make Apple Fritter Donuts:

1- Heat the oil in a deep frying pan to 350 degrees F.
2- Mix together the flour, honey, syrup (only 2 tablespoons), baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, salt, egg, milk, and vinegar to make the donut batter.
3- Evenly coat each apple slice with the batter.
4- Use tongs to carefully lay the donuts in the oil for a few minutes on each side. You want them to look golden brown.
5- Place the cooked donuts on a plate with paper towels to drain. 
6- Squirt a little syrup or powdered sugar substitute on each donut as a topping!

Another Note: I cook everything sugar-free, including desserts! If you want to use normal sugar, just substitute 1/4 cup of your favorite sugar for the honey and syrup in the batter and sprinkle your favorite sugar on top of the donuts for a topping!

And if you're looking for more homeschool unit studies, be sure to check out our growing collection here!

Happy Educating,
Carla & the kids who don't sit still!