1st Day of Advent – Winter Holiday by Arthur Ransome

booksTitle: Winter Holiday

Author: Arthur Ransome

Published: 1933

‘You know what it’s like. Dark at teatime and sleeping indoors: nothing ever happens in the winter holidays

That’s Nancy’s scenario, anyway, but how wrong she is! Alongside new friends, Dorothea and Dick, the Swallows and Amazons have their biggest adventure yet, involving igloos, ice-skating, sledging and semaphore, as they prepare for their quest to the North Pole! A breath-taking adventure: perfect for a cosy, Christmas read! Also, a fantastic, Christmas gift. Arthur Ransome’s classic Adventure series never fails to delight and this particular title (fourth in the series) is perhaps the most popular.

Christmas-based Entertainment: Semaphore

Semaphore_alphabetSemaphore has been a useful form of communication for centuries, and it features prominently in Arthur Ransome’s ‘Winter Holiday’, where we see the children demonstrate it, whilst communicating to Nancy from outside. It involves holding two flags in certain positions to indicate letters, eventually performing a word. As well as being a useful communication skill, it is an entertaining Christmas activity, as we see in ‘Winter Holiday. So get yourself (or make yourself) some flags each, and get down to your local field or park, with a friend and have a go yourself using the guide on this page taken from ‘Winter Holiday’, itself. As you can see, it shows you the position in which you hold the flags for each letter. Goodluck!

Christmas Fact: 

Tom Smith, creator of the Christmas Cracker, originally invented the design as a unique way to sell sweets, in 1847. He worked in a Bakery and had been striving to find an original way to sell his sweets.


2 thoughts on “1st Day of Advent – Winter Holiday by Arthur Ransome

  1. walter raleigh says:

    Love the way you’re approaching your ‘Christmas Book Advent Calendar’, Poppy! The additional information and activities really make it stand out from being ‘just’ another booki review. Very much looking forward to the next 23 entries!


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