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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Germany Series at GermanPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind German holidays and observances. I’m Matt, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 7 - Advent Sunday.
In this lesson, we will discuss how people spend the time before Christmas in Germany. Advent starts four weeks before Christmas and begins with the first Advent Sunday, or Adventssonntag in German, and ends with the fourth Advent Sunday before Christmas Eve.
Now, before we get into more detail, I've got a question for you-
What is the word that should be filled into the blank of this German Advent verse? "Advent, Advent, a candle burns, first one, then two, then three, then four; then Blank is standing in front of the door."
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later, so keep listening!
During Advent, many people decorate their houses with Christmas decorations by hanging a string of lights, Christmas balls, and stars on their windows. In addition to making Christmas decorations, people send Christmas wishes, write wish lists often referred to as Wunschzettel, buy Christmas gifts, and bake Christmas cookies during this time.
Many people either make Advent wreaths, called Adventskränze, at home or buy them; they are typically made of fir branches and decorated separately. However, no matter what, the wreath must be decorated with four candles. On each Advent Sunday, another candle is lit. Another custom during the time of Advent is that parents gift Advent calendars to their children. From December 1st to 24th, one of the twenty-four doors of the Advent calendar is opened each day. There is usually a small chocolate behind these "little doors," to shorten the waiting time until Christmas Eve.
In many cities, the decorated Christmas trees and hanging strings of lights reflect a festive atmosphere. Christmas markets called Weihnachtsmärkte in German attract numerous visitors and are a favorite rendezvous point during Advent. At the stalls, Christmas items, cookies, warm drinks, and light meals are offered. You can find the smell of roasted almonds, hot chestnuts, or mulled wine, called Glühwein in German, everywhere and usually the sounds of Christmas music can be heard all around.
Another pre-Christmas tradition is exchanging gifts, known as Secret Santa or Wichteln. This usually takes place during the Christmas holidays with friends or colleagues.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
What is the missing word in this German Advent verse?
The missing word in this famous children's' verse is Christkind or “Christ Child.” So it will be "Advent, Advent, a candle is burning, first one, then two, then three, then four; Then the Christ Child is standing in the front of the door"
So listeners, how did you like this lesson? Did you learn anything interesting?
Do you celebrate Advent in your country?
Leave a comment telling us at GermanPod101.com. Until next time!

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Do you celebrate Advent in your country?