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C) Make a speech on the American tradition to celebrate Halloween.
6. Pair work. Make up and act out a dialogue discussing national holidays. Do library research and collect additional materials describing unusual national holidays. Use the expressions of correcting people, agreement and disagreement, etc.:
1. Staying with your friends in Georgia, you discuss the customs and traditions of a national holiday with your host/ hostess.
2. Be a host/hostess to a guest from Britain or the USA and discuss the beauty of Russian folk tradition in festivals. Point out the revival of traditions.
3. Exchange opinions with your partner on the multinational character of our society and the advantages of enrichment for the various traditions in the multinational situations.
7. Group work, a) Read a letter from America:
The University of Pittsburg
Pittsburg, Pen. USA
15 November, 199...
There is an air of great expectation here in the US. We are just through with Halloween fancy dress balls, but the season of holidays is in full swing. Thanksgiving Day is coming. And now that we are on the subject, let me tell you more about American holidays that impress foreigners so much.
Thanksgiving Day has a special significance for Americans because it is traced back to that group of people (pilgrims) who were among the first to come to the New World in search of freedom.
Late in the year 1620, a ship named the Mayflower brought 102 English men, women and children to the rocky coast of what is now Massachusetts, one of the 50 states of the United States of America. The ship's passengers were Puritans who had been prosecuted in Britain.
The winter was cold, and about half of the Pilgrims died. In the spring, with advice and help from the Indians the Pilgrims planted corn (known also as maize) and other crops.
In October 1621, to celebrate the good harvest, the Pilgrims held a feast which featured, among many other foods, wild turkey, which is native to North America. They called this their day of thanksgiving.
The story is told and retold every year to young children in schools. The holiday is called Thanksgiving Day, and is now observed on the fourth Thursday of November.
Thanksgiving Day is marked by families gathering together to enjoy a traditional dinner of roast turkey, and to speak to one another of the things for which they are thankful. Young people who are at college or live away from their families usually come home for this dinner. If the parents are elderly, their adult children or some other relative will prepare the Thanksgiving feast.
Perhaps the most important day to a country is the Holiday that commemorates a national event. For many nations the date is the country's independence day.
For the Americans — it is the 4th of July, Independence Day. The Holiday recalls the signing of the Declaration of Independence on the 4th of July, 1776.
At one time, picnics with patriotic speeches and parades were held all over the United States on the 4th of July. They are still held in many places. It is also a day on which firework displays fill the skies in the evening, and the flying of flags is common.
In 1976 the bicentennial celebrations were held across the country.
A more recent holiday has been introduced, it is Martin Luther King Day. The Rev. Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. was a black clergyman who is ranked among the greatest of black Americans because of his crusade during the 1950s and 1960s to win full civil rights for his people. Preaching nonviolence, much in the same way as had Mohands K. (Mahatma) Gandhi of India Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke out and campaigned tirelessly to rid the United States of traditions and laws that forced on black Americans the status of second-class citizens. Among these laws were those in some states which required black people to take back seats in buses or which prevented voting by blacks. The world was shocked when Dr King was assassinated in 1968. Ever since, special memorial services have marked his birthday on January 15. By vote of Congress the third Monday of every January, beginning in 1986, is now a federal holiday in Dr King's honour.
Some holidays are observed in the custom by all Americans, for others, however, the customs can vary greatly. Those who feel strongly about the labour unions, for example, see Labor Day as a day on which to demonstrate labor solidarity in a public way. For others, Labor Day means a day off to go for a ride in a car, to go for a final summer swim or to hold a family get-together.
Sorry, but this is a very long letter indeed. Please, give my best wishes, love and season's greetings to all our family and friends.
b) Split into groups (3—4 each) and discuss the information of the American holidays. One of the students is supposed to play the role of a person who doesn't know much, or doesn't care much for keeping traditions and observing holidays. Another is highly enthusiastic about them. Keep interrupting one another with questions to get more information about the holidays and traditions.
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