logo-l.jpg (8824 octets)


jacko.gif (1434 octets)



En vrac


k-witch3.gif (1264 octets)

1) Halloween: Origins and Legends

What are the origins of the Halloween holiday?

Pagans, devil worshipers, Roman Catholics, Wiccans, Druids and Gaelics have all celebrated October 31st for one reason or another. I doubt, however, if they donned plastic Star Wars suits and trick-or-treated around their villages. The origins of Halloween are varied and at this time are blended together, forming a general myth of what it's all about.

All Saint's Day within the Roman Catholic religion is November 1st, a day when all Roman Catholics are obligated to attend Mass to honor all Saints in heaven. The day proceeding would be October 31st, thus dubbed 'All Hollow's Eve' meaning 'to sanctify'. Druids would celebrate New Year's Eve on October 31st; this holiday was called 'Samhain' meaning 'summer's end'. When the Roman's conqured the Druids, many of their holidays and beliefs were absorbed into Roman culture. Another theory is that midnight on October 31st is the only time the gates of hell are opened and the undead can walk the earth.

The age-old myth that Halloween is the day when witches fly on broomsticks and ghosts are freed of their shackles will never die. We may never know the actual origin of Halloween, trick-or-treating, jack-o-lanterns or watches. But, I say, we believe what we wish were true; more often than not, we believe the unbelievable. Several links to some fabulous informational sites and articles are listed on the page titled Halloween: Origins and Legends. Wade through them, have fun finding some new information and make what you want of it all. Above all else, Have a Happy Halloween!


Tradition :

Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain. The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.

The American tradition of "trick-or-treating" probably dates back to the early All Souls' Day parades in England. During the festivities, poor citizens would beg for food and families would give them pastries called "soul cakes" in return for their promise to pray for the family's dead relatives. The distribution of soul cakes was encouraged by the church as a way to replace the ancient practice of leaving food and wine for roaming spirits. The practice, which was referred to as "going a-souling" was eventually taken up by children who would visit the houses in their neighborhood and be given ale, food, and money.

The tradition of dressing in costume for Halloween has both European and Celtic roots. Hundreds of years ago, winter was an uncertain and frightening time. Food supplies often ran low and, for the many people afraid of the dark, the short days of winter were full of constant worry. On Halloween, when it was believed that ghosts came back to the earthly world, people thought that they would encounter ghosts if they left their homes. To avoid being recognized by these ghosts, people would wear masks when they left their homes after dark so that the ghosts would mistake them for fellow spirits. On Halloween, to keep ghosts away from their houses, people would place bowls of food outside their homes to appease the ghosts and prevent them from attempting to enter.

As European immigrants came to America, they brought their varied Halloween customs with them. Because of the rigid Protestant belief systems that characterized early New England, celebration of Halloween in colonial times was extremely limited there. It was much more common in Maryland and the southern colonies. As the beliefs and customs of different European ethnic groups, as well as the American Indians, meshed, a distinctly American version of Halloween began to emerge. The first celebrations included "play parties," public events held to celebrate the harvest, where neighbors would share stories of the dead, tell each other's fortunes, dance, and sing. Colonial Halloween festivities also featured the telling of ghost stories and mischief-making of all kinds. By the middle of the nineteenth century, annual autumn festivities were common, but Halloween was not yet celebrated everywhere in the country.

In the second half of the nineteenth century, America was flooded with new immigrants. These new immigrants, especially the millions of Irish fleeing Ireland's potato famine of 1846, helped to popularize the celebration of Halloween nationally. Taking from Irish and English traditions, Americans began to dress up in costumes and go house to house asking for food or money, a practice that eventually became today's "trick-or-treat" tradition. Young women believed that, on Halloween, they could divine the name or appearance of their future husband by doing tricks with yarn, apple parings, or mirrors.

In the late 1800s, there was a move in America to mold Halloween into a holiday more about community and neighborly get-togethers, than about ghosts, pranks, and witchcraft. At the turn of the century, Halloween parties for both children and adults became the most common way to celebrate the day. Parties focused on games, foods of the season, and festive costumes. Parents were encouraged by newspapers and community leaders to take anything "frightening" or "grotesque" out of Halloween celebrations. Because of their efforts, Halloween lost most of its superstitious and religious overtones by the beginning of the twentieth century.

By the 1920s and 1930s, Halloween had become a secular, but community-centered holiday, with parades and town-wide parties as the featured entertainment. Despite the best efforts of many schools and communities, vandalism began to plague Halloween celebrations in many communities during this time. By the 1950s, town leaders had successfully limited vandalism and Halloween had evolved into a holiday directed mainly at the young. Due to the high numbers of young children during the fifties baby boom, parties moved from town civic centers into the classroom or home, where they could be more easily accommodated. Between 1920 and 1950, the centuries-old practice of trick-or-treating was also revived. Trick-or-treating was a relatively inexpensive way for an entire community to share the Halloween celebration. In theory, families could also prevent tricks being played on them by providing the neighborhood children with small treats. A new American tradition was born, and it has continued to grow. Today, Americans spend $2.5 billion annually on Halloween, making it the country's second largest commercial holiday.



Pumpkin carving is a popular part of modern America's Halloween celebration. Come October, pumpkins can be found everywhere in the country from doorsteps to dinner tables. Despite the widespread carving that goes on in this country every autumn, few Americans really know why or when the jack o'lantern tradition began. Or, for that matter, whether the pumpkin is a fruit or a vegetable. Read on to find out!

People have been making jack o'lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed "Stingy Jack." According to the story, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn't want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form. Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. The next year, Jack again tricked the Devil into climbing into a tree to pick a piece of fruit. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree's bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.

Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, upset by the trick Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, would not allow Jack into hell. He sent Jack off into the dark night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as "Jack of the Lantern," and then, simply "Jack O'Lantern."

In Ireland and Scotland, people began to make their own versions of Jack's lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. In England, large beets are used. Immigrants from these countries brought the jack o'lantern tradition with them when they came to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, make perfect jack o'lanterns.



Did you know that:

A pumpkin is really a squash?
It is! It's  a member of the Cucurbita family which includes squash and cucumbers. That pumpkins are grown all over the world?
Six of the seven continents can grow pumpkins including Alaska! Antarctica is the only continent that they won't grow in.That the "pumpkin capital" of the world is Morton, Illinois? This self proclaimed  pumpkin capital is where you'll find the home of the Libby corporation's pumpkin industry.That the  Irish brought this tradition of pumpkin carving to America? The tradition originally started with the carving of turnips. When the Irish immigrated to the U.S., they found pumpkins a plenty and they were much easier to carve for their ancient holiday.

2) Halloween in France

What is Halloween? Where did it come from? Why and how is it celebrated in France? If you've ever puzzled over these questions, take a look at this article - the answers are here!

Halloween originated in the British Isles out of the Pagan Celtic celebration of Samhain. On this day, it was believed that spirits rose from the dead and mingled with the living. The Celts left food at their doors to lure good spirits and wore masks to scare off the evil ones. The Romans who invaded England added a few of their own traditions to the celebration of Samhain - celebrating the end of the harvest and honoring the dead.

Centuries later, the Roman Catholic church established November 1st as All Saint's Day (la Toussaint), in celebration of saints who do not have their own holy day. This was done in part to detract attention from the pagan celebration of Samhain, but it didn't work. The celebrations on the eve of All Saint's Day continued evolving, and during the Irish immigration of the 1840s, Halloween found its way to the United States, where it developed over time into the children's holiday that we know today.

How did Halloween get to France?

Some sources say that Celts in northern France also celebrated Halloween, but this is unconfirmed. In any case, Halloween is not a traditional French holiday, yet it becomes more popular every year. How and why this is so is a combination of cultural influence and corporate marketing.

The French had been hearing about Halloween from foreign residents and tourists and in their English classes for years before the holiday ever showed its (masked) face in France. In 1982, the American Dream bar/restaurant in Paris began celebrating Halloween. At first it had to explain the holiday to each customer, but since about 1995, French customers have tended to be more and more familiar with Halloween.

The Mask Museum in Saint-Hilaire-Saint Florent was opened by Cesar group in 1992, and the owners started working to expand Halloween in France the following year.



Philippe Cahen, president of Optos Opus, claims that he single-handedly "imported" Halloween to France in 1995, despite admitting that Halloween already existed there (nope, doesn't seem like a logical claim to me either). Cahen created Le Samain cake in 1997 and registered the word "Halloween" as a world trademark. He also challenged 25 artists to come up with works with a Halloween theme, and the results were exhibited at the Victor Hugo Clinic.

In 1996, the village of St. Germain-en-Laye held a Halloween party on 24 October in the middle of the day, to give locals an idea of what it was all about.

Meanwhile, companies like France Télécom, McDonald's, Disney, and Coca Cola began using pumpkins and other Halloween images and ideas in publicity campaigns. This simultaneously increased French people's knowledge about Halloween and made it seem like another imposition of American culture.

How is Halloween celebrated in France?

Halloween in France is usually celebrated by costumed people of all ages going to parties at friends' homes, restaurants, bars, or clubs. The costumes themselves tend to be traditionally "scary" - mummies, ghosts, goblins, witches, and vampires - rather than the cute costumes like princesses, superheroes, and the cartoon character of the day which are popular in the US. Trick-or-treating is extremely rare; when it does exist, it is not from house-to-house, but from store-to-store.

Stores, malls, restaurants, offices, and homes decorate their windows; pastry and candy shops make up special desserts and candies; and many different kinds of companies use Halloween in their ads. Supermarkets sell pumpkins for jack-o'-lanterns and candy companies are now marketing candy in the traditional Halloween format: one big bag filled with lots of little packages, which may encourage trick-or-treating.

Traditionally, pumpkins are not a popular food in France, so the high demand for jack-o'-lanterns during Halloween has been a boon for pumpkin growers. There is even a pumpkin patch at a farm outside of Paris where people can pick their own.

Halloween in France is rather controversial, due to the perception of corporate and cultural influence, as well as the fact that it is not a typical French holiday and some people still don't understand what is being celebrated. Because Halloween is seen as an American celebration, some French people refuse to enjoy it, having decided to include it in their anti-American boycott. It's too early to tell whether Halloween will develop into a long-term tradition; once the novelty wears off, it may turn out to be just a fad.


3) Voici le début du scénario du film de Tim Burton

The Nightmare Before Christmas

(le Pumpkin patch chorus y chante  Halloween à merveille)

'Twas a long time ago, longer now than it seems, in a place that perhaps you've seen in your dreams. For the story that you are about to be told, took place in the holiday worlds of old. Now, you've probably wondered where holidays come from. If you haven't, I'd say it's time you begun.

This Is Halloween

Boys and girls of every age
Wouldn't you like to see something strange?

Come with us and you will see
This, our town of Halloween

This is Halloween, this is Halloween
Pumpkins scream in the dead of night

This is Halloween, everybody make a scene
Trick or treat till the neighbors gonna die of fright
It's our town, everybody scream
In this town of Halloween

I am the one hiding under your bed
Teeth ground sharp and eyes glowing red

I am the one hiding under your stairs
Fingers like snakes and spiders in my hair

This is Halloween, this is Halloween
Halloween! Halloween! Halloween! Halloween!

In this town we call home
Everyone hail to the pumpkin song

In this town, don't we love it now?
Everybody's waiting for the next surprise

Round that corner, man hiding in the trash can
Something's waiting now to pounce, and how you'll scream

Scream! This is Halloween
Red 'n' black, slimy green

Aren't you scared?

Well, that's just fine
Say it once, say it twice
Take the chance and roll the dice
Ride with the moon in the dead of night

Everybody scream, everybody scream

In our town of Halloween

I am the clown with the tear-away face
Here in a flash and gone without a trace

I am the "who" when you call, "Who's there?"
I am the wind blowing through your hair

I am the shadow on the moon at night
Filling your dreams to the brim with fright

This is Halloween, this is Halloween
Halloween! Halloween! Halloween! Halloween!
Halloween! Halloween!

Tender lumplings everywhere
Life's no fun without a good scare

That's our job, but we're not mean
In our town of Halloween

In this town

Don't we love it now?

Everyone's waiting for the next surprise

Skeleton Jack might catch you in the back
And scream like a banshee
Make you jump out of your skin
This is Halloween, everybody scream
Won't ya please make way for a very special guy

Our man Jack is king of the pumpkin patch
Everyone hail to the Pumpkin King now

This is Halloween, this is Halloween
Halloween! Halloween! Halloween! Halloween!

In this town we call home
Everyone hail to the pumpkin song

La la-la la, Halloween! Halloween! (etc.)



It's over!

We did it!

[tummy bump]

Wasn't it terrifying?

What a night!

Great Halloween everybody.


4) Nos 3 livres conseillés :

Sean C. O'LEARY. 3 autumn/Halloween : a fistful of art & craft ideas. Dublin : O'Brien Books, 1987. ISBN 0862781264

Colin & Jacqui HAWKINS. The monster book of witches, vampires, spooks and (monsters). London:  Collins, 1997. ISBN 0001982869

Elizabeth CLAIRE et al.. ESL teacher's holiday activities kit. New York : The Center for Applied Research in Education, 1990. ISBN 0876283059



Stew In A Pumpkin Shell

1 large pumpkin
Melted butter
2 large onions, chopped
4 large garlic cloves, chopped
Olive oil
3 pounds chuck steak, cubed
1 pound tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 1/2 pints beef stock
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 pounds white potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 pounds raw pumpkin, cut in chunks
2 cans sweet corn
12 canned yellow peach halves, sliced
Syrup from canned peaches

Bouquet garni
1 heaping teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper

To prepare the pumpkin, cut the top to form a lid, angle cutting so the lid will sit on and not fall in. Leave the stem for a handle. Remove the the "guts", the fibers and seeds and discard. Scoop away most of the solid flesh, leaving a sturdy wall of pumpkin, being careful not to cut through it. Measure out 2 pounds of the pumpkin flesh for the stew.

Brush the inside of the cleaned pumpkin with melted butter and sprinkle lightly with sugar. Replace the lid and set the pumpkin aside on a baking sheet.

Cook the onion and garlic in a little oil until soft but not browned. Transfer to a large saucepan. Brown the beef in the oil and add it to the onion mixture in the saucepan. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, half the stock, the bouquet garni, a little salt and plenty of pepper to the meat and onions. Cover and simmer until the meat is almost cooked. This should take about 1 hour.

At this time, put the pumpkin shell in the oven at 375 degrees. Leave it for 30 minutes, or longer if the walls are thick. But be careful not to collapse the walls. You can use a large casserole as a support for the walls.

Add the sweet potato, potato and pumpkin to the saucepan and cover with more stock. Return to a boil and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the meat is tender, the potatoes are cooked, and the liquid is thickened with the dissolved pumpkin.

Stir in the sweet corn and peaches and simmer for another 15 minutes. Taste, correcting the seasoning and adding a little of the peach syrup. Remover the bouquet garni and discard. Ladle the stew into the pumpkin and put back into the oven for 10 to 15 minutes and serve. Makes 6 to 8 servings.


Vegetable and Rice Stuffed Pumpkin - (Vegetarian)

1 Pumpkin (14 or 15 inches in Diameter) or 2 smaller ones
4 TB Sugar
2 TB Tamari sauce
1 c Water
1/2 LB Fresh shelled chestnuts
1/4 c  raisins
1/4 c  apricots, Chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, chopped or any tart apple
1/2 c Walnuts, broken but not too Small
1 Stalk celery, chopped
1 medium White onion, chopped
1 medium Red onion, chopped
1 can Corn, drained
1 medium Sweet green pepper, chopped
1 medium Sweet red pepper, chopped
1 medium Zucchini squash, chopped
1 medium Yellow squash, chopped
2 medium Fresh jalapeno peppers, Seeded and minced
2 c Cooked brown basmati rice
1/4 Ts Mace
1/4 Ts Tumeric
Black pepper
1/2 Ts Cinnamon
4 TB Tamari sauce

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Wash pumpkin and cut off the top, angle the cut so that the top will fit back on more easily, use a big spoon to scoop out strings and seeds. Mix sugar and 2 tbs. tamari sauce (you can warm them in the microwave so they will mix more easily ) and spread evenly over insides of pumpkin. Line the bottom of a large pan with single piece of aluminum foil folded over itself 3 or 4 times, pour 1 cup water in pan, place top back on pumpkin and place in baking pan, cover the pumpkin and the pan with foil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until pumpkin is just starting to become tender, the thicker the pumpkin the longer it will take.

2. Steam the nuts for about 15 minutes. Rinse them in cool water and slip off the brown skins. Chop chestnuts coarsely.

3. Combine chestnuts with raisins, apricots, apple, walnuts, celery, white and red onions, corn, green and red pepper, jalapeno peppers, mace, tumeric and rice, mix well. Add the 4 tbs. tamari and mix again.

4. Dust the inside of the pumpkin with the cinnamon. Pack the pumpkin with the filling and replace the pumpkin top. Return pan to oven, add water to cover the bottom of the pan and bake for 45 to 55 minutes.

5. If you are going to serve the pumpkin on something other then the pan it was cooked in BE CAREFUL. The bottom of the pumpkin may be VERY soft. Wrap the foil from the bottom of the pan up around the pumpkin as you pick it up, this will keep the bottom intact.
When serving this recipe, scrap the inside of the pumpkin with the serving spoon and mix the pumpkin into the stuffing.
If you have leftovers do not leave it in the pumpkin. Remove the filling and scrape out the pumpkin and store in your refrigerator.


Pumpkin Dumplings

1/2 cup canned solid pack pumpkin
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon (generous) baking powder
1/2 cup all purpose flour
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Whisk pumpkin, egg, salt, nutmeg and baking powder in large bowl to blend. Mix in flour (dough will be soft). Dip 1/2-teaspoon measuring spoon into boiling water to moisten. Scoop up generous 1/2 teaspoon of dough and return spoon to water, allowing dough  to drop. Working in 2 batches, repeat dropping 1/2 teaspoonfuls of dough into water, first dipping spoon into water to moisten each time. Boil dumpling until cooked through, about 10 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer to colander and drain. Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add dumplings. Sauté until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer dumplings to bowl. Sprinkle with cheese and serve. Makes 4 Side-Dish Servings.


Pumpkin and Potatoes

Pumpkin (Red Hubbard Squash Preferred)
White Eastern Potatoes Bacon

Cut up a pumpkin into manageable pieces. Remove skin off of the pumpkin with a potato peeler. Run pumpkin slices over a grater to shred the pumpkin. Shred enough to fill half of a 9" x 13" pan. Pile the shredded pumpkin higher than the sides of the pan as it will shrink as it cooks. Mix 1\2 to 1 cup of granulated sugar into the pumpkin to suite your taste.

Peel and slice enough white potatoes to fill the other half of the pan. Add salt to the potatoes and mix thoroughly.

Place pan in oven at 350 degrees for 1-1\2 to 2 hours. During the first 1\2 hour, stir the potatoes.

Also stir the pumpkin. After 1\2 hour, cover the top of the entire pan with slices of bacon. Turn bacon over halfway through the baking process.

Enjoy a great one pan meal. I personally like to use Hubbard Squash (red in color pumpkins). They are a sweeter pumpkin for use in cooking and especially for pumpkin pie.


Pumpkin Raviolis

Pumpkin Filling:
2/3 c. canned pumpkin
1/2 c. fresh grated
or shredded Parmesan cheese
(preferably parmigiano-reggiano)
2 Tbsp. dry bread crumbs
3 Tbsp. ground amaretti cookies or almond biscotti
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
Dash nutmeg
Dash salt

For sauce:
1/4 c. butter, melted with dash fresh chopped sage, poured over hot pasta, or to above melted butter and sage, stir in 1/2 C cream and heat to hot but not boiling, pour over hot pasta

Make ravioli dough and press or buy pre-made.

Combine all filling ingredients. Use to fill ravioli dough by putting 1 tsp. of filling onto one square of dough; moisten edges (use egg wash or egg beaten with a little water), then top with another square of dough, pressing edges to seal. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Cook in boiling water for 6 - 8 minutes or till pasta is cooked, but firm. Drain ravioli and keep warm while preparing sauce.

Spicy Pumpkin Bisque

1-1/2 teaspoons dried ground small red chilies such as Piquins
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
1 16 ounce can pumpkin puree
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 cup half-and-half or light cream
1/4 cup dry sherry
grated nutmeg


Sauté the onion and garlic in the butter until they are soft and transparent. Add the pumpkin, stock, Chile pepper, ground pepper, allspice, sugar, and sherry. Bring to a boil and cover. Simmer the soup for 30 minutes. Place the mixture in a blender and puree until smooth. Return the soup to the pot, add the half-and-half, and simmer until heated. Garnish with the nutmeg and serve.

This soup can be served either hot or cold. Serve it hot with grilled fish and seasoned green beans or cold as a luncheon entree with a crisp salad.


Pumpkin Sauce for Pasta

3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 LB pumpkin flesh, peeled seeded and diced (use one pumpkin about 1 3/4 LB)
8 fl oz strong vegetable stock
2 tbsp. parsley, or 1 tsp. dried parsley
4 fl oz single cream
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
pinch of ground black pepper
pasta, freshly cooked, to serve

Gently fry the garlic and onion in the oil for 3 or 4 minutes. Do not allow them to burn. Add the pumpkin and vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer over a medium heat for 15  minutes, stirring occasionally, until the pumpkin is tender.

Break up the pumpkin by beating it with a wooden spoon, and stir in the parsley, cream, nutmeg and seasoning. Cook for a further minute and add a little of the pasta cooking water if the sauce is too thick. Pour over the pasta and serve immediately. Serves 3




Une expérience menée en classe de 5ème par N. Mertz, professeur délégué au CDDP de Metz et à lire ci-dessous, ou sur le site www.ac-nancy-metz.fr/enseign/anglais/hallowmertz.htm




Dans le cadre de la mise en place des parcours diversifiés, il m’a paru intéressant de travailler sur le thème de " Festivals " : pour ce faire, j’ai choisi de développer " Halloween " en me basant sur une expérience menée avec des élèves de classe de 5ème très motivés par l’étude des fêtes et des traditions populaires des pays anglophones. Comme Halloween tend à s’implanter en France de plus en plus et que les élèves en ont entendu parler, nous avons imaginé de présenter aux autres classes d’anglais de 5ème de l’établissement certains travaux sur ce thème :
- une recherche de civilisation (historique)
- une représentation théâtrale
- des travaux d’élèves (activités sur la langue)
- la décoration du CDI : confection d’épouvantails, de dessins, de masques et découpages de citrouilles et création d’une fresque murale (travail mené conjointement avec le professeur d’arts plastiques) .
- la présentation musicale d’une chanson choisie par le professeur d’anglais et étudiée en cours du point de vue de la langue mais travaillée musicalement avec le professeur de musique.
Les sources : De nombreux ouvrages existent et peuvent vous être utiles :
Active English - Halloween, Jill Pay - European Language Institute
Background to Britain, M. D. Munro Mackensie et L J Westwood - MacMillan Publishers p121 à 129.
Britain : the country and its people, James O’ Driscoll - Oxford University Press : p 208 à 216
Celebrate ! Holidays in the USA - English Programs Division 
Celebrations, Marlene et Robert Mc Cracken - Revised - Collection Themes .
ESL Teacher’s Holiday Activities Kit, Elizabeth Claire - Phoenix. 
Faces of the USA’, Elizabeth Laird - Longman : p 68 à 69
Hallowe'en, Marlene et Robert Mc Cracken Collection Themes .
In Britain, Bordas et Fils p 22 à 27
Spotlight on Britain - Second Edition - Oxford English p 11 à 15
Welcome to Britain and the USA, Elizabeth Laird - Longman .
Witches, Pumpkins, and Grinning Ghosts, Edna Barth - Clarion.
Surveillez les différentes publications de revues pour la classe telles que Standpoints (CNDP) où des articles paraissent souvent en début d’année et sont facilement exploitables.
De nombreux documents sont accessibles sur Internet (voir exemples de documents en annexe).

Objectifs :

1 - De civilisation 
Développer la connaissance de faits de civilisation et de traditions différentes au travers d’articles de journaux ou de magasines anglophones et d’ extraits de livres sur un thème.
2 - Méthodologiques 
- Entraîner les élèves à la lecture et à la compréhension de textes authentiques.
- Les entraîner à sélectionner les informations utiles .
- Les entraîner à la reformulation des informations recueillies et à leur restitution.
- Les entraîner à la production d’énoncés au travers d’une pièce de théâtre mettant en scène les différentes traditions de Halloween et d’activités sur la langue guidées par le professeur.
- Développer la créativité et l’imagination des élèves.
- Entraînement à la recherche au CDI avec le documentaliste .
- Pratique et utilisation du dictionnaire.
- Développement de l’autonomie des élèves par rapport à un texte.
- Développement de l’aptitude des élèves à communiquer, à écouter et à travailler en groupes constitués par le professeur.
3 - Linguistiques 
- Travail sur la langue lors d’activités sur le thème proposées par le professeur :
- Recherche et enrichissement lexical.
- Travail sur les marqueurs de cohesion : la logique interne d’un texte.
- Production d’une pièce de théâtre sur le thème guidée par le professeur: les marqueurs du discours oral.
- Améliorer la production orale des élèves lors de la représentation théâtrale de la pièce qu’ils auront écrite. Cette représentation pourra être filmée au camescope pour une amélioration de la qualité de l’oral.
- Objectif grammatical : travail sur les comparaisons/ le présent simple / la place des adjectifs, le simple past.
4 - Objectifs interdisciplinaires
- Favoriser la création individuelle et la créativité des élèves par la production de dessins , éventuellement d'une fresque en vue de la décoration du CDI à l’aide du professeur d’arts plastiques. Création d’épouvantails , de masques divers, de mobiles et bien sûr, utilisation de citrouilles creusées et décorées par les élèves. Concours du dessin le plus " Halloween ".
- Entraînement aux travaux manuels avec la création de découpages et collages qui compléteront et illustreront la recherche livresque.
- Étude d’une chanson en cours de musique qui pourra être accompagnée par un ou plusieurs instruments de musique interprétée par les élèves.
5 - Mise en œuvre
Les élèves seront répartis en groupes de 3 ou 4 élèves au CDI pour leur travail de recherche et devront, dans l’ordre qui leur plaira, compléter les tâches qui leurs seront assignées dans un délai prévu par le professeur en fonction de leur niveau et du nombre d’activités choisies ; toutes les activités donneront lieu à une évaluation par le professeur d’anglais ainsi que le professeur d’arts plastiques pour la partie artistique et manuelle .

I) Activités en anglais


a) Travail sur l’origine et l’historique du mot ‘Halloween’.
Leur travail consistera à effectuer une recherche documentaire dans différents livres et magazines sur l’origine du mot, de la fête (voir références en annexe) et les différentes traditions qui la composent. Ils devront sélectionner les informations pertinentes, en comprendre le contenu à l’aide du dictionnaire et du professeur, les reformuler simplement et les présenter clairement sous forme d’un résumé. (Les résultats de leurs recherches devront être insérés dans la pièce de théâtre qu’ils imagineront ensuite). Le travail de chaque groupe pourra être illustré à l'aide de dessins et présenté sur des tables lors de la représentation théâtrale.
b) Création d’une pièce de théâtre.
Celle-ci mettra en scène différents sketches illustrant les traditions de Halloween comme " Trick or treat, Fortune Telling, The Three Dish Game,The Nut Game etc ". Le fait d’inclure ces jeux donnera à la création un contenu plus ludique et suscitera la motivation des élèves lors la création de la pièce et leur attention au cours de la représentation (les spectateurs peuvent faire partie intégrante de la pièce).
c) Travail lexical à partir de poèmes sur le thème.
* Donner aux élèves quelques poèmes et les faire travailler sur le lexique : ils auront pour consigne de relever les termes évoquant :
- all the scary characters (witches, ghosts, spiders, frogs, bats, skeletons, cats,...)and the scary adjectives related to them (wild, terrible, warty, etc ...)
-The symbols of Halloween (castspells, flying brooms, etc...)
-The scary verbs (wobble, tremble, cream, groan, brew, haunt, scare, cook,cast a spell, etc...)
-The scary sounds (crackling, booing, moaning, groaning etc...)
* Créer un poème à l'aide de ce lexique et le mettre en chanson en utilisant un air connu de tous par exemple "Are you sleeping ? "
Ex. de poème :
Witches flying, witches flying,
Through the sky, through the sky,
Wobbling and trembling, wobbling and trembling,
On their brooms, on their brooms.
Warty witches, warty witches,
Cooking brew, cooking brew,
Casting spells and chanting,
casting spells and chanting,
In their caves, in their caves.
Cet exercice a pour but d’enrichir le lexique des élèves sur le thème. La mise en musique facilitera la présentation du poème et le respect du rythme.
d) Expression écrite : Describe your Halloween character (and draw it !)
En utilisant le lexique se rapportant aux différentes parties du corps, les élèves devront effectuer un travail semi - guidé sur les comparaisons :
ex : "My scary thing is horrible. You just have to see it to know that it is evil. It has :
eyes as scary as ___________/as big as_______________
a nose as warty as __________/as long as__________
a face as _________ as___________
a body as ugly as___________
hands like__________
mouth as crooked as____________/as mean as___________
ears like_____________
feet like_____________
Au cours de cet exercice, les élèves seront amenés à réutiliser le lexique vu dans l'exercice c).
Si le vocabulaire se rapportant aux diverses parties du corps n’a pas été vu, il sera bon de l’introduire au préalable à l’aide d’un dessin annoté que les élèves devront compléter.
Ils pourront ensuite dessiner les descriptions obtenues et les afficher dans le CDI .
e) Exercice de lecture.
Le professeur choisira une histoire sur Halloween et mélangera l’ordre des paragraphes. Les élèves auront pour consigne de les remettre dans le bon ordre. Ce type d’exercice permettra au professeur de sensibiliser les élèves à la logique inhérente d’un énoncé et à l’utilisation des link-words. (voir la brochure intitulée : Hallowe’en collection ‘Themes’ où un grand choix de textes est proposé).
f) Exercice sur les superstitions.
Les élèves doivent constituer une liste des superstitions qu’ils connaissent et que le professeur aidera à compléter :
ex : It is unlucky to throw away a piece of bread.
A dream that occurs in a strange bed will come true.
Crossed fingers make a dream come true.
A person who enters a house with his left foot first will have bad luck.
Leaning a broom against a bed is unlucky.
A cricket that comes into a house brings bad luck.
It is good luck to see a shooting star .
Killing a spider brings poverty or rain .
It is good luck to sing while bathing. Etc...
Cet exercice sera l’occasion de réactiver le présent simple, les relatifs et les expressions liées au lexique de " luck " .
g) Utiliser les tests de clozure pour développer la compréhension de texte et le lexique sur Halloween.
Ex : It was a [---] night with great [---] clouds in the sky. The moon [---] out from behind the clouds and looked down on an old haunted [---]. In that [ ---]lived a(n)
[---]. Time to [--- ] . Time to [---] chanted the [---] [---] as the clock struck [---] .
Cet exercice sera l’occasion de mener une réflexion sur la langue : quel catégorie grammaticale utiliser devant quelle nature de mot ? De plus, il permettra le réemploi du ‘ simple past’ étudié en 6ème et revu en 5ème .
Toutes les activités menées en anglais donneront lieu à une évaluation du travail du groupe par le professeur d’anglais et figureront dans les résultats du trimestre de l'élève.

II) Activités menées avec le professeur de dessin.

a) Carving pumpkins
b) Building a scarecrow.
c) Creating painted Halloween masks (bats, skeletons, monsters, ghosts, etc) .
d) A haunted house .
e) Creating class mobiles using images glued to circles, squares of coloured cardboard.
f) A class wall hanging can be made.
Ces créations apporteront à l’activité un côté ludique et serviront à décorer le CDI lors de la représentation théâtrale. Ils développeront la créativité des élèves et feront l’objet d’une évaluation spécifique par le professeur d’arts plastiques.

III) Apprentissage d’une chanson avec le professeur de musique.

Le professeur choisit une chanson populaire et en étudie les paroles en classe auparavant :
- il veillera à travailler la prononciation des mots nouveaux ainsi que le rythme des phrases .
la présence du professeur de musique lors de cette séquence pourra être profitable aux élèves lors de l’apprentissage du chant en cours de musique.
- cette chanson pourra être enregistrée ou filmée au caméscope en vue d’un travail plus approfondi sur la production orale des élèves.
- celle-ci sera présentée lors de la soirée à la suite de la représentation théâtrale des élèves.
Toutes ces activités seront présentées par les élèves à leurs camarades de 5ème lors d’une soirée récréative et seront, si possible, enregistrées et filmées au caméscope en vue d’une exploitation en classe.


N. Mertz Professeur délégué au CDDP de METZ