The first day of elementary school is full of excitement, butterflies in the tummy and just a little bit of anxiety. This is why I find the German “Schultüte” custom so especially charming! Maybe you’ve seen these awesome cones in older photos? Here is the story behind them!
The Schultüte tradition dates back to the early 19th century in Germany. Parents give their little first grade students a colorful, oversized cone to celebrate starting school for the very first time. The cone is typically filled with little treats like chocolates, candy and small gifts. So fun! My mother has a terrific photo of her and her Schultüte as a little girl that I’ll have to track down and share.
The name Schultüte loosely translates to “school cone” (technically, Schule= school and Tüte=bag….sometimes you’ll see it spelled Schultuete when an umlaut isn’t available!). I remember we talked about getting one for Wolfie when he started first grade, but alas we never did! It looks so fun! Check out the grins on these kiddos…
images: barb lawrence
I love these stylish little girls from 1969! Although she wasn’t ready for school yet, mama made the younger sister her own mini Schultüte so she wouldn’t feel left out. Aw!
I don’t know about you but everything seems better served in a cone! German parents and grandparents know this too and since around 1810 they have been helping ease those first day of school jitters by giving them Schultüten. Today, this charming tradition lives on as a celebration for children all over the country. In addition to slightly more modern designs, the cones are now filled with cool school supplies (like colored pencils and crayons) and little toys, in addition to the classic sweets!
I think this tradition is so wonderful….would you try something like this for your little one when they enter elementary school? I think I would bend the rules and actually make one for 2nd or 3rd grade too! We just started school this week. Has your school begun yet??