I grew up in a home where Santa was completely taboo. My mother hated him so much that we didn’t even have a single Santa decoration, we didn’t sing any Santa Christmas songs … I mean, it got a little intense sometimes.
Now, as a mother, I can see her point – I don’t teach my children that Santa is real, either, but I ‘m not quite so fanatical about it. I actually have some Santa ornaments on my tree, we sing about “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer,” and we enjoy doing Secret Santas for people. The “S” word is not akin to swearing in my house.
Why have we chosen not to incorporate belief of Santa into our home? My mom’s reasons and my reasons are the same, even though we’ve gone about the implementation differently.
1. We believe that focusing on Santa takes the emphasis off the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, who is the real reason for the season.
2. We believe that teaching our children about the reality of Santa, and then later telling our children that he doesn’t exist after all, sets up a distrust between parents and children. We want our children to be able to believe us, and so we want them to feel that we will always tell them the truth.
3. This is especially important to us as homeschoolers – we want our children to listen to us as we teach them about everything. We are setting ourselves up as their role models, and so we need to create a learning environment where they know they can believe the things we say on every topic, be it English or science or what-have-you.
4. We want to tell our children about Jesus Christ and to share our beliefs without that atmosphere of possible mistrust.
Because of our homeschool environment, my children don’t encounter much opposition to our anti-Santa traditions. I’ve told them that if they have a friend who believes in Santa that they shouldn’t spoil it for them – everyone should have the choice to believe or not to believe.
This doesn’t mean that every homeschooling family should stop celebrating Santa Claus. It’s a personal decision to be made by each family – it’s your home, your family, your holiday, and you should celebrate it the way you see most fit. The most important thing is that you celebrate in the way that brings the most love, joy, and harmony into your own home this Christmas season.