It was full steam ahead for the 143 students of St George Greek School who participated in Adelaide’s third annual Easter workshop. The event, organised and run by the Greek school’s eight teachers, is focused on the significance of Easter and Greek Orthodox traditions.
The teachers tirelessly guided youngsters through an array of educational and enjoyable activities. The little ones made everything from Easter cards and baskets to their own lambada (candle). They baked egg-shaped biscuits, made koulourakia and learnt how to fold palm leaf crosses distributed in Orthodox churches on Palm Sunday.
St George Greek School Principal Maria Miltiadous, a mother of four herself, states that the inspiration behind the workshops is to ensure that children have a hands-on experience of Greek culture and traditions.
“This is another way for our Greek School community to come together. Parents and grandparents also participate and watch their children and grandchildren experience Greek traditions that they too were once taught,” Ms Miltiadous said.
St George’s parish priests, fathers Diogenis Patsouris and Konstantinos Skoumbourdis, also attended the activities and interacted with the students.
READ MORE: How Easter is celebrated around Greece
“The children love making palm crosses with Fr Konstantinos while listening to the very interesting things he shares about Easter, but I would have to say the highlight of our workshop for the students is getting into the mixing, kneading and twisting of our traditional Easter koulourakia,” Ms Miltiadous said. As a child of migrants herself, she understands the importance of inspiring the younger generation of Greek Australians to love the country of their ancestors.
“My parents left Cyprus and came to Australia as refugees. They lost everything back home but, despite all the hardships, they never lost their love for Greece and Cyprus, which they made sure they instilled in me from a young age,” she said, adding that it is our turn to ensure that we preserve our wonderful traditions and teach the younger generations just as we had been taught about our heritage.
READ MORE: Greek culinary traditions of Easter