In Ecuador this past year, December 23rd was reserved for school Christmas programs.  Students and their families flooded into the schools to participate in the fun.  At my small school, 
U.E. Agustín Cueva Dávila, the Christmas program 
was a whole-school event. 
To decorate, students were asked to make ornaments or donate some 
from their homes to add to a community Christmas Tree.
The program started with a grand procession by all the students representing their different classes. 
Ecuadorians love living history reenactments so the Juniors and Seniors paraded in 
and formed a living crèche overlooking the festivities.
The pre-school kids had the Little Drummer Boy leading their procession. 
Then they sang a few songs while the teachers sprayed foam, or “fake snow” to add to the
spirit of the season.  When you live at the Equator, snow mostly comes in a bottle! 
Other classes sang Christmas Carols, or performed choreographed routines to Christmas music.  It’s normal for some crafty parent to contract or make all the costumes while each child pays their share. 
The staff joined in the fun with a musical number of their own.  
I missed rehearsal so I wasn’t able to participate.
The 6th and 7th graders had been practicing a traditional dance for weeks, 
and they performed it beautifully.

Here they are posing for pictures with their dance instructor. 
Even the Parent’s Association danced a famous jig called “Los Viejitos”, or The Old Ones.
After all the performances, the students lined up by class and the new 
student government representatives passed out gelatin and candy for all to enjoy.
“Señora” and “Señorita Navidad” of Ibarra also came to the party to hand out bags of candy
to all the younger students.  The kids were in complete awe to have them at our school.  
Beauty contest winners are very famous here.
And finally, as in all Ecuadorian parties, the festivities ended with a dance party.  
Books were given to the winners.
And then we were free.  Eight days of vacation from school.  
And lots of holiday adventures for me to come!