Palm Sunday Tradition: Swishing the Switches

easter switches

On Friday of this week English Class second graders made traditional folklore swishing switches for Palm Sunday.

easter switches2

First they folded strips of paper into accordian-like shapes to create colourful catkins to hang from the branches.

easter switches3

Then the pupils added brightly coloured feathers to added to their pussy willow branches. This tradition goes way back in history to Eastern Finland where children would dress up as Easter witches and then, carrying a bunch of decorated Easter switches, they would visit neighbouring farms. At each homestead the children would swish the switches in the air as they chanted a verse that would wish good fortune and health for the year to come. The farmer would keep the switch and usually hang it over the barn door for good luck and prosperity. The children would then return to the farm the following Sunday, Easter Sunday, to receive an Easter egg as a reward for the swishing. Happy Palm Sunday to all of our blog readers!

One comment on “Palm Sunday Tradition: Swishing the Switches

  1. Joanne Morrison says:

    Thank you for explaining this Palm Sunday tradition and great to hear it is being explained and carried on by the children in school. Congratulations to the Finnish school system!

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