The first day of kindergarten or elementary school is when a child spends a considerable amount of time away from their parents for the first time. In order to make their experience a memorable one and to reduce their anxiety, the German “Schultüte”, “Zuckertüte” or KidsCone plays an important part.
Schultüte is a cone shaped bag filled with goodies that first-graders in German schools get for completing their first day in school. A Schultüte basically means a school cone (although the actually meaning of German word Tüte means ‘bag’ in English).
History of the Schultüte
For more than a century, German kids have been carrying a “Schultüte” (or “Zuckertüte”) to school to celebrate their first day of school.
Many believe that “Schultüte” was first introduced to school children in Eastern Europe and Germany in the 19th century. Back then, parents took the cones to the school before the first day of first grade where the teachers would hang them up on “Zuckertütenbaum” (sugar cone tree).
Children believed that once the sugar cones were ripe and large enough to pick, it was time for them to go to school.
Content of the Schultüte
Contents of the cones may include fruits, sweets, small toys or even school supplies, and it is given as a reward to the child for having completed the first day of school. Nowadays, almost every German child carries a Schultüte to school on the first day of school.
It’s common for close family members to contribute to the contents of the Schultüte.
Schultüte can be self-made or it can be bought but it is a a must-have as the first day of elementary school has a very special meaning in Germany. However, one tradition that every child follows is that they do not open the Schultüte until the first day of elementary school is over.
You can buy a ready-made Schultüte online or from various stores, or you can even make your own Schultüte. In the simplest form, you can just make a simple cone and then stuff it with things like toys, stationery, and treats.
Make your own Schultüte
Here are the steps to make your own Schultüte.
- Choose paper for your Schultüte and cut into a square. The bigger the square, the bigger the size of the cone. Consider using construction paper if you’re making a bigger one.
- Lay paper flat and bring two opposite corners together. Glue the edges together.
- Cut off top to form into a cone
- Pick a color of tissue paper and cut a long enough strip to wrap around the top of your Schultüte.
- Glue around the outside top of the cone and attach the tissue paper hanging down.
- Fill your Schultüte with candies. Depending on the size of your cone, you can also fill it with office supplies.
- Choose a ribbon color, pull up the tissue paper and tie it closed.
- That’s all! Your Schultüte is now ready.
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