What Do We Celebrate?

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May Day rallies

May Day rallies

May Day rallies

Kayla Page, Writer

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My favorite holiday is Christmas, not because I receive presents but also because of my religion and the time I get to spend with my family as well. I also love April Fool’s Day. I spend the whole day with pranks and laughs with my friends and family, wondering who will end the day with the best prank. The problem is, though, I only know of the ones that were introduced to me. So, what about the ones that are celebrated by others?

There are 365 days in a year and we live through each and every one these days every year. Throughout the year, there are many special celebrations in honor of events or people that have occurred or who have passed. But the only thing is that we only know of the ones we are raised up with. For example, the more international ones are Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Valentine’s Day. Then, there are the ones that are celebrated every day, like National Free Ice Cream Day and more. So, I will introduced two holidays that I had learned of.

The first holiday is called Summer Solstice, also known as Midsummer. This is a holiday that is celebrated in Japan and we know it to be as Daylight Savings Time. It occurs on June 21 to mark the onset of summer as the longest day and the shortest night in the Northern Hemisphere. It also again occurs on December 22 for the onset of winter as the shortest day and the longest night in the Southern Hemisphere. This is just the movement and tilting of the Earth as one side moves closer to the sun while the other side moves further away. Based from research from its history, this observation was first made during the Stone Age. In Japan, it is celebrated with feasts, bonfires, picnics and songs as families come out to enjoy some sun rays and have fun together. Some traditions and activities found on this day are visitations to Stonehenge, the creating of a flower crown and Solstice Sun catcher, gardening, and the thoughts and actions of new goals that they set to start something new.

Another interesting holiday is called May Day that occurs on May 1. It is a public ancient spring festival in the Northern Hemisphere that is found in many cultures. It actually has 3 reasons as to why this day is celebrated. Originally, it was a day to celebrate the start of summer, but later after that holiday was established, there had been a bombing in the early years of Chicago where many people would protest for different working conditions. So, it then became a day of protests and riots that traced back to the events that occurred in Chicago. Four people were killed in the protests when a bomb was thrown into the crowd. So, in today’s age it is a day to celebrate and honor workers. During the festival, workers dance, sing, and eat cake. Also, an interesting fact is that the name of the holiday originates from the French term “m’aidez”. It means, “Help me!”

In conclusion, from this research it was knowledgeable because I was able to learn about two holidays that I had no previous information about. It was quite interesting, especially the holiday May Day. Another IB Learner Profile that relates to this is that of Communicator because from my research I was able to write and share the information that I had learned to others so that they can learn as well.

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