Celebrating Spring!

 

Ancient cultures particularly native American and Iranian, celebrate the spring equinox with customs that date back to thousands of years.

Last week before breaking for spring, we took a small peek at the traditional Iranian ‘Norooz’ with the spread of our own ‘Haft Seen’ (the seven seen’s or the letter S in farsi) a tabletop (sofreh) arrangement of seven symbolic items traditionally displayed at Norooz, (the Persian new year) which includes seven items all starting with the letter seen (س) in the Persian alphabet.

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  1. Sabzeh (سبزه) – wheat, barley, – symbolizing rebirth (we used wheat and barely growing in our garden)
  2. Sombol – (hyacinth) – symbolizing first blooms of spring (we planted ours in the garden),IMG_4761

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3. Senjed (سنجد) – dried oleaster Wild Olive/Jujube fruit – symbolizing love (we planted our first jujube tree last week though i used a

 

store brought fruit for the spread) IMG_4735

4. Seer – Garlic (wed planted some in the garden last fall)

5. Seeb (سیب) – apple – symbolizing beauty and health (salvaged from cafeteria waste some for the compost heap ans a few for the spread)
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  1. Somāq (سماق) – sumac fruit – symbolizing (the color of) sunrise
  2. Serkeh (سرکه) – vinegar – symbolizing old-age and patience (didnt have)

The following items, although Persian symbols, are not the main part of the traditional Haft-Seen.

  • Divan-e Hafez, a Persian poetry book (we read from the children’s garden journals instead)

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  • painted eggs ( couple of plastic ones i was given for Easter by the class)
  • coins as a symbol of wealth
  • Iranian sweets ( is used pistachio brittle from TJs )

For good measure we panted a raspberry bush,

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and while learning of ancient traditions enjoyed the full vigor of springs display after a quiet winter.

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