Holidays and Homeschooling
Holidays and homeschooling are a perfect mix! As a matter of fact, there are so many holidays from all around the world – and they can be a terrific frugal resource and jumping off point for your studies.
Everyone loves a party or a celebration! Why not use them as frugal resources for lesson planning? It doesn’t even need to be complicated. With the internet right at our fingertips – it is a simple matter of looking up the information. You can find holidays worldwide listed here.
Once you choose a few holidays (or perhaps one for each month of the year), you can use these simple tips to create lessons:
- Bookmark Wiki-pedia or country websites to read together.
- Add countries and sites to a list (Google Drive is free & makes a good choice).
- Select a few pictures from the site to add to doc or notebooking page.
- Use maps, atlases, or globes to identify location of country with students.
- Have students make and “stamp” pretend passports.
- Find recipe from your country of choice and cook together.
- Use a notebooking sheet or journal to list country information.
July 14- Bastille Day in France
La Fête nationale (The National Celebration) a.k.a. French National Day is the day in France when they celebrate their independence. It may look familiar and is actually scheduled each year only ten days after the 4th of July – Independence Day in the United States of America.
Celebrations are held throughout France, just as in the U.S. during our Independence Day. The oldest and largest regular military parade in Europe is held on the morning of 14 July, on the Champs-Élysées in Paris (famous landmark).
Ceremonies, speeches, parades, and fireworks are all common during celebrations around the country. The French armor guard, wreath laying at various memorials, and marching bands are also familiar sights during the holiday.
Origin of the Holiday
Shortly after the storming of the Bastille on 4 August, feudalism was abolished. On 26 August, the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen was proclaimed.
The Fête de la Fédération on the 14 July 1790 was a celebration the unity of the French Nation during the French Revolution. The aim of this Celebration was to symbolize Peace one year after the Storming of the Bastille.
Books to Read
- A Kids Picture Book . . . by Jasmine Williams
- Kids Travel Guide to Paris France by Shira Halperin
- Mission Paris – A Scavenger Hunt by Catherine Aragon
- City Walks with Kids – Paris Adventures on Foot by Natasha Edwards
- The Secret Garden – classic
- Monet & the Impressionists for Kids by Carol Sabbath
- History for Kids – Napoleon Bonaparte
- Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans
- In the Reign of Terror by GA Henty
- Henri Matisse – Drawing with Scissors by Jane O’connor
Movies to Watch
Les Miserable – classic & newer versions to choose from
Bastille Day in Other Countries
Though originating in France, Bastille Day is not only celebrated there, but in places all around the world. Bastille Day Interactive Map for US shows locations in the United States where it is celebrated – you may be able to join in the fun for a family field trip or hands-on learning activity.
Other French Holidays
Looking for other French holidays to explore with your family? Check here to see what might make a good match for your schedule, lesson plans, or location.
Do you have some ideas to add? What have you done to celebrate or learn more about holidays in the United States or other countries in your homeschool?