HOLIDAYS AND TRADITIONS
I would like to tell you about holidays and traditions in the
United States of America. The so-called legal holidays include
Christmas, New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Day, President's
Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving and others.
Christmas is a religious holiday celebrated on the 25th of
December. On this day Americans celebrate the birth of Jesus
Christ and sing Christmas carols. Another important tradition is
sending Christmas cards. People start sending cards to their
relatives and friends early in December. Going home for
Christmas, is another good tradition. Christmas is considered to
be a family celebration and every person must come back home on
this day. This means that at Christmas, American houses are full
of aunts, uncles, cousins and other relatives who might not see
each other for a year. Americans put up a Christmas tree and
decorate it with toys and sweets. There are religious ceremonies
at churches on Christmas Day and families usually attend them.
The Christmas table is very big. You can see turkey, ham, sweet
potatoes, pies and other food. In the morning children hurry to
the Christmas tree to look for presents. They hang big colourful
socks for Santa Claus to put presents inside. Everybody starts
unwrapping presents and thanking each other.
New Year's Day is celebrated on the 1st of January, but
Americans begin celebrating it on the 31st of December. There is
a big celebration in Times Square in New York City on this day.
New Year's Day is not as widely celebrated as Christmas. On
January 1 Americans
visit friends, relatives and neighbours. There are parties and a
lot of food. People watch television together and write New
Martin Luther King Day is celebrated on the third Monday in
January. Martin Luther King was a black man who won full civil
rights for black Americans. On this day schools, offices and
federal agencies are closed.
Memorial Day is on the last Monday of May. On this day Americans
honour the memories of their dead relatives. This day is also
the beginning of summer. Americans go to relax at the beach or
go to the mountains.
Independence Day is one of the most important holidays in
America. It is celebrated on the 4th of July. On this day in
1776 the Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia.
There are picnics, parades and fireworks all over the country on
Independence Day. Americans do not work: they have day-long
picnics with their favourite food like hot-dogs, hamburgers,
potato salad and others.
Halloween is a holiday celebrated mostly by children and the
young. On the 31st of October they dress as vampires, witches
and ghosts and go from house to house saying trick or treat.
People should give them a treat otherwise, the children will
play a trick on them.
Thanksgiving is one of the popular American holidays, too. It is
celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November. This holiday
dates back to the time when the first settlers, the Pilgrims,
came to America. Their first winter was very hard, they had
little food. In spring, the Indians taught them to plant and
grow new crops, hunt and fish. The following autumn the
colonists made a great feast for the Indians. At Thanksgiving
American families gather and spend this day together. The
traditional Thanksgiving food is roast turkey, pumpkin pies,
cranberry jelly, ham, sweet potatoes, and other delicious food.
The United States is a young country, but it has a lot of great
old and new holidays that are fun to celebrate.
attend [a'tend] посещать
Christmas carol ['knsm3s'kcer(3)l] рождественская песенка
cranberry jelly [кгагтЬ(э)п ,keik] клюквенное желе
crop [krop] урожай
date back [Мегфзек] ОТНОСИТЬСЯ К
day-long ['deilrtrj] длиной в целый день
Declaration of [ldekl3lrerJ(3)n3vl декларация
Independence indi'pendans] независимости
feast [fist] пир
federal agency ['fedar^l'eKfpnsi] федеральный орган
firework ['fai3W3:k] фейерверк
full civil rights ['M'srvil'raits] полные гражданские права
ghost [gaust] привидение
ham [haem] ветчина
hurry ['плп] спешить
honour ['юпэ] почитать
hang (hung, hung) [hATj] вешать
legal holiday ['hg^l'lmtadei] государственный праздник
pumpkin pie ['рлшкш 'pai] тыквенный пирог
put up [,put4p] ставить (о елке)
relative ['relatrv] родственник
relax [n'laeks] расслабляться
resolution [,rez3'lu:J(3)n] обещание
settler ['setb] поселенец
treat [tri:t] угощение
trick [tnk] шутка
turkey ['t3:ki] индейка
unwrap [дп'гагр] разворачивать
witch [witj] ведьма
1. What do the legal holidays in the USA include?
2. What do you know about Christmas? What are its traditions?
3. Is New Year's Day celebrated in America?
4. What is Martin Luther King Day?
5. What is one of the most important American holidays and why?
6. What holiday is loved by children?
7. What is celebrated at Thanksgiving?