Holidays provide a great way to introduce students to the culture and history of a country. “Observe” a world holiday in your classroom by asking students to research the holiday’s origins or learn more about a particular aspect of the country.
Holiday Focus: France’s Bastille Day
On July 14, the French celebrate their national holiday, Bastille Day, when people remember the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789 during the French Revolution. The Bastille was home to political prisoners and was a symbol of the monarchy’s absolute powers. The celebrations today include fireworks, dancing, and parades, including a parade down the Champs-Élysées in Paris.
World Holidays Featured This Month
Rwanda – Liberation Day – July 4
Marks the end of the 1994 genocide, when close to one million people lost their lives.
Cape Verde – Independence Day – July 5
Although an official holiday, it is celebrated only once every five years to cut down on the cost of celebrations.
Guam – Liberation Day – July 21
Marks the island’s liberation from the Japanese in 1944 during World War II.
Egypt – Anniversary of the Revolution – July 23
Commemorates the 1952 revolution, which overthrew the British-supported monarchy and brought to power a group that included future president Abdel Nasser.
Venezuela – Simón Bolivar’s Birthday – July 24
Honors Venezuela’s liberator and national hero.