MESSAGE FROM THE PRINCIPAL
As the natural light dims in the winter months, many cultures and religions celebrate holidays that focus on light as a central symbol. Ramadan, the Lantern Festival of Loy Krathong, and Diwali were celebrated earlier in the year. In the coming weeks, celebrations on Luciadagen, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Epiphany, and the Chinese New Year will take place. Many of the holidays that feature candles, lanterns, and lights that fill the darkness as people commemorate historical events and annual festivals.
The Winter Solstice takes place on December 21st. With the shortest hours of daylight, this day is commemorated in many countries. In some places, a Yule Tree is decorated with fruit and candles and lit to represent the sun. In Japan, where the sun is of central importance, many people celebrate the end of the Yin and beginning of the Yang period on this day (from www.multiculturalcalendar.com).
Our library has several excellent texts that describe the international holidays with light and peace at their center. Among the many books included in the collection are the following titles: Celebrations of Light by Nancy Luenn, Kwanzaa by Deborah M. Newton Chocolate, The Winter Solstice by Ellen Jackson, Floating Lanterns and Golden Shrines by Rena Krasno and Toru Sugita, Feliz Nochebueve Feliz Navida by Maricel E. Presilla, and Hanukkah, Shmanukkah, by Esme Raji Codell.
I welcome information about holidays or traditions that your family celebrates throughout the year if you would like us to share them with our school community. I hope your family enjoys this time of festivities and special occasions.