Holidays: Who declares these important dates and why they do so

Shanna-Kay Lemeul, Staff Writer

Happy holidays!

Many students, families, and friends wonder what the purpose of holidays are and Why this and How that. Well, if you’re looking for answers, then look no more. Ai??The connotation of this word typically means the act of folks getting together to “turn up” or in other words, to have a good time. Sounds awesome, right?

The denotation of Ai??the word holiday comes from the Old English word hA?ldonigdAi??g, which was originally referred only to special religious days, but as time and generations evolved, it spread into a variety of traditions and such. In modern use, holiday means any special day of rest or relaxation, as opposed to normal days away from work or school.

In fact, there are 24 known holidays that have historical and religious backgrounds. These holidays sprang from events that became popular and thenAi??became a tradition. Those holidays include but are not limited to the follwing: Ai??Valentine’s Day, New Years, Christmas, 4th of July, Chinese New Year, Yom Kippur, Easter, Thanksgiving, Mardi Gras, and Veterans Day.

Whereas, holidays such as Christmas, Easter, New year’s, and Thanksgiving are the few holidays that most students all across America celebrate. Yet, people may not be aware that the only holidays that are ai???break worthyai??? are all Christianity-based. Ai??Those of Jewish, Muslim, Atheist, or other non-Christian origins do not get the option to miss school, without suffering from an absence, to partake in known or unknown holidays in which they chooseAi??to celebrate.

In Stroudsburg High School, Students tend to face this problem. Some students believe that those that who celebrate holidays such as Rosh Hashanah should not be penalized for missing school.

ai???I think that for those who practice specific religions should be able to personally take time from school, just like we would for Christmas break,” said senior Sadie Unangs.

While some students agree, not all do. Senior Mikayla Johnson suggests that ai???if every holiday were to be given to every religion then we would have a pretty big handful of days off which deters our education. I believe students that have specific religions they follow should not be penalized when they do not show up to school for that day, but for everyone to get the day wouldn’t make sense.”

Additionally, what governing body is responsible for declaring holidays? Celebrations are only legally pertinent to federal employees and the district of Columbia. States typically have the authority to decide their own legal holidays. With that being said, the state of Stroudsburg High School, which is Pennsylvania, is responsible.

Despite religious reasons, holidays are considered as events for family and friends to bond. For many Americans, gathering around the Christmas tree, opening presents, and watching everyone’s eyes sparkle as they tear the wrapping paper off each gift are joyous moments. At Easter, many people enjoying hunting around for hidden eggs filled with delicious candy Ai??to enjoy.

Each holiday has its special activities, rituals, and events. Typically, one of their main goals it to bring people closer together and to spread joy.

Below are a few of the many holidays. Ai??For each, is a list of exciting activities people often enjoy. Ai??Perhaps you and your family will try something new!

Christmas:

Mini Gingerbread Houses

Gingerbread Cookie Recipe

Nativity Costumes

Pin the Nose on the Reindeer

Snowball Toss ( if there’s snow!)

Elf on the Shelf Christmas Countdown Printable

Caroling

Hanukkah:

Play the Dreidel Game

Make Latkes (potato pancakes) Ai??and Sufganiyot (round jelly donut)

Read Hanukkah Books Together

Hanukkah Helpers (plush dolls)

New Year’s Day:

Guessing the resolutions

Create your own time capsule

Fun photos

Visit to a city

Count down to 2017

Below are several links you may find valuable.

http://judaism.about.com/od/holidays/a/Hanukkah

http://tipjunkie.com/activities-for-kids/games/christmas-day/

http://howdoesshe.com/15-fun-new-years-eve-activities-for-kids-or-adults/

 

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