USA: December Holidays                                                  

The month of December is the Christmas season. Christmas Day (December 25th) is a time for sharing and visiting among families and friends.  Christian families celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ on this day. Most American families decorate an evergreen tree in their home with glass bulbs, shiny tinsel, and lights.  Children hang special Christmas stockings to be filled with treats. Young children hope that Santa Claus will surprise them with presents left in their stockings or by the Christmas tree on Christmas morning. Family members and friends often exchange gifts and send Christmas cards to one another.


Another important December holiday is the Jewish season of Hanukkah/Chanukah which is the Festival of Lights. It is celebrated for eight days in honor of the Jewish victory and the miracle of the oil that lasted for eight days.


Also in December is the African-American celebration called Kwanzaa--the celebration of renewal. Kwanzaa is an African-American holiday that celebrates the first harvest. It begins on December 26th and lasts for seven days. The name Kwanzaa comes from a phrase which means "first fruits" in Swahili.