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ERIC Number: EJ957085
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1056-0300
A New Take on New Year Celebrations
Montgomery, Sarah E.; Christie, Erica M.
Social Studies and the Young Learner, v24 n2 p14-17 Nov-Dec 2011
People all over the world relish the opportunity to count down the final moments of the year and welcome an exciting New Year full of opportunities and fresh beginnings. Different cultures have historical traditions of welcoming in the New Year, from eating black-eyed peas in the American South to creating geometric "Rangoli" (a form of sandpainting decoration) in India as part of the five-day Hindu festival of Diwali. These culturally rich celebrations offer time for both reflection on events past and resolutions for future behavior. In the United States, the New Year's holiday is truly global, as opposed to holidays such as Thanksgiving or Independence Day that arise from our national history. The New Year's holiday offers students the opportunity to consider critically the multicultural traditions practiced in the society. A study of the changing of the year offers myriad social studies connections--from questioning how calendars have developed, to analyzing celebrations across geographic and political boundaries, to making a personal commitment to improve the community in some way. In an effort to move beyond craft-based "celebrations," the authors use the New Year's holiday to emphasize global understanding, multiple perspectives, and civic responsibility. By cultivating a deeper awareness and understanding of traditions practiced in the United States and abroad, students develop knowledge of diverse cultures and make global connections. The authors describe three classroom activities that engage students with rich social studies content and use the fresh beginning of a new year to work as active global citizens by making resolutions that involve community-based civic action. (Contains 3 notes.)
National Council for the Social Studies. 8555 Sixteenth Street #500, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Tel: 800-683-0812; Tel: 301-588-1800: Fax: 301-588-2049; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: India; United States