Tradition, emotions and family. That’s Thanksgiving. It is one of the most popular and important holidays in the United States and Canada. The last Thursday of November is one of the most special days for Americans. It is a day full of tradition where every family in the country gathers around a feast to give thanks for all they have received during the year. At Casvi International American School, we also join this celebration, not only because we are an international school with an American curriculum and teachers, but because at Casvi we are a big family full of traditions.
As the last week of November approaches, all Americans are preparing with excitement for this important date. Thanksgiving is a day of tradition where families get together, prepare a traditional dinner, decorate their homes with pumpkins and crowns of nuts, and give thanks for everything received during the past year. Without a doubt, this year Thanksgiving has been marked by the pandemic. Many families have a lot to be thankful for, since, without a doubt, being able to be close to their loved ones is already a reason to celebrate this 2020.
In spite of the restrictions, and following the protocol marked by goverment, in Casvi International American School we have wanted to participate in this special day for all. Our students were able to feel the culture and tradition of this day thanks to their native teachers. Full of enthusiasm, they arrived early in the morning with all the necessary materials to start their most creative side and design the perfect Thanksgiving decorations.
Throughout the morning, our students developed different activities accompanied by their native teachers, who helped them create typical dishes of this holiday. In addition, using different design techniques, our students created the best decorations: turkey crowns, pumpkins, and pilgrim hats.
Having an IB methodology in our teaching model, makes our main objective to form citizens of the world. This means that at Casvi International American School we work to share our cultures and traditions. Therefore, Thanksgiving is an important day in our calendar, as it is the perfect time to work as a family, sharing moments, experiences, cultures and traditions. Cooking, creating together, eating pumpkin pie as a family… Thanksgiving is our day.
At Casvi International American School we enjoy this festivity to the fullest. Even our colleagues from Madrid Diario came to our facilities to join us on this day. In this link you can discover more details about the Thanksgiving celebration in our school.
The origins of Thanksgiving
The origin of Thanksgiving goes back to the history of the first settlers who came to the United States from England and has to do with the autumn crops. As tradition has it, in 1620 a group of settlers from Plymouth, Massachusetts helped the English to harvest the land. After a successful harvest, they decided to invite those Indians who had helped them to a meal as a sign of their appreciation for having taught them the techniques of growing corn and hunting.
This celebration lasted over time and each year it was held in more colonies and American states. In 1817 the State of New York adopted the fourth Thursday of November as a national holiday, and finally, in 1863 President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed it as a non-working day in the whole country. Today it is a national holiday.
Normally, at Thanksgiving, American families gather in their homes decorated for the occasion, where they prepare a great banquet. Before the meal, the most believers pray a prayer in thanksgiving to God for the food.
At the table, the turkey is the main protagonist. Usually the traditional dinner consists of stuffed turkey, corn bread, cranberry sauce and potatoes. Also at dessert time it is usual to serve a pumpkin or apple pie to finish the dinner. The meal is usually accompanied by apple cider, wine and champagne.
Just as in other celebrations such as Christmas or Halloween, Americans usually decorate their homes on Thanksgiving. Pumpkins and dried fruit wreaths are placed on the doors. In addition, the decoration of this holiday focuses on the colors of autumn: brown, red, green and orange.
This holiday is also celebrated in other countries such as Germany and Japan, although they have different names. In all cases the religious character predominates, since it consists of a celebration of gratitude for some special reason. Traditionally it is for a good harvest or the end of a drought, among others.
Today’s celebration has lost much of its original Christian meaning and has become an opportunity for American and Canadian families to come together and give thanks for what they have. Now more than ever. In Europe, the celebration of Christmas or Christmas Eve would be the perfect comparison for this special day.