Thanksgiving. 9:30-9:40 Preview. Why do Americans celebrate Thanksgiving? What does Thanksgiving mean to you? 9:40-9:55 History of Thanksgiving Day

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1 Thanksgiving 9:30-9:40 Preview Why do Americans celebrate Thanksgiving? What does Thanksgiving mean to you? 9:40-9:55 History of Thanksgiving Day Below is a transcript of the YouTube video History of Thanksgiving Day by Studies Weekly. You should have viewed this video before class. Take turns reading the transcript out loud. Turkey, pumpkin pie, family, football and parades! Where did these traditions come from? And how did they become a part of the national holiday we call Thanksgiving? To understand the origins of this holiday, we must take a look back at the origins of our country itself, particularly at the Plymouth Colony and its crucial first year. In the fall of 1620, the cargo ship Mayflower transported a group of 102 Englishmen, women and children to the New World. A portion of this group was Separatists, people who had religiously separated themselves from the church of England and wanted to come to the New World, defined religious freedom. In time, these people would come to be known as the Pilgrims. 1

2 The Mayflower arrived at the New World in December of 1620, weeks later than they had originally hoped and landed much farther north than they had planned, putting them in the present state of Massachusetts. These unfortunate circumstances made for a particularly harsh winter. Nearly half the colonists died, and those who did not, fell ill. As the Spring of 1621 approached, the luck of the Plymouth Colony began to change. The colony was visited by several local Indians, or Wampanoag people. One of these visitors was Tisquantum, otherwise known as Squanto. Squanto spoke English and showed the pilgrims how to use fish as fertilizer to grow crops on sandy land. He was their interpreter. He even chose to live among the colonists at Plymouth. By November 1621, things were looking up for the Pilgrims. They had survived their first year in the New World and had a successful enough harvest to continue living there. The Pilgrims collected their harvest, which could have included corn, pumpkins, squash, and some grain. They caught fish and gathered together wild fowl or birds, such as ducks, geese, and even wild turkeys to feast on in celebration. The mighty king of the Wampanoag people, Massasoit, joined the Pilgrims with 90 of his men. He also donated five deer to this great feast, which lasted for three whole days. To the Pilgrims, this celebration was not the start of a new holiday; it was a common harvest festival much like the ones held in Europe every fall after a good harvest. On December 18, 1777, Washington held a national day of Thanksgiving to commemorate the defeat of the British army at Saratoga. Through the remainder of the Revolutionary War, Washington proclaimed several national days of thanksgiving to commemorate special days. By the end of the war, individual states, particularly in the North, had gotten used to having a yearly Thanksgiving Day though there was no official national holiday, and the date of the feast would vary from state to state. Thanksgiving, as we know it today, was made possible largely by the efforts of the nineteenth century writer named Sarah Josepha Hale. She was America s first female magazine editor and author of the famous nursery rhyme, Mary Had a Little Lamb. During the Civil War, Hale was convinced that a national Thanksgiving Day would awaken in American hearts the 2

3 love of home and country, of thankfulness to God, and peace between brethren. She wrote letters to governors and even to President Abraham Lincoln. A few days after receiving her letter on October 3, 1863, President Lincoln issued a proclamation declaring the last Thursday of November to be Thanksgiving Day. Year after year, Americans continue to celebrate this day of feasting and thanks even though Congress had not yet ratified it as an official holiday. Over the years, the date seems to coincide with the beginning of the Christmas shopping season. In 1924, Macy s Department Store started their Thanksgiving Day parade, which route heads down the streets of New York and ends at the store. Also in the 1920s, the Detroit Lions came up with the idea of a Thanksgiving Day football game in order to boost dwindling attendance. It was not until 1941 that Congress finally made Thanksgiving Day a legal holiday. When they did, they moved the holiday up one week so the official day of Thanksgiving would be the fourth Thursday in November. This was done in an attempt to extend the Christmas shopping season. Today, more than anything else, Thanksgiving is about family. Though the way we serve our turkey and our pumpkin may have changed, and our entertainment varied over the years from archery and displays of arms to football and parades, Thanksgiving has become a welcome day of rest to spend with loved ones in recognition and appreciation for all the blessings for which we are thankful. 9:55-10:05 Vocabulary Matching. Place the letter in the blank next to the word it matches. 1. feast a. when a boat or an airplane has arrived from somewhere 2. donated b. people who travel or move for religious reasons 3. pilgrims c. gathering of crops 4. landed d. large, rich meal usually to celebrate a special holiday/occasion 5. harvest e. large bird eaten at a Thanksgiving meal 6. blessings f. the Pilgrims friends in the New World 7. turkey g. give without charging money 8. Indians h. favor from God 9. Mayflower i. first American colony 10. grace j. prayer you say before a meal to thank God for the food 3

4 11. Plymouth k. the Pilgrims boat 10:05-10:20 Answer the questions in complete sentences: 1. Where did the Pilgrims come from? 2. Why did the Pilgrims come to the New World? 3. Did many Pilgrims die the first winter? 4. Who came to visit in the spring? 5. What did the Indians show the Pilgrims? 6. What did the king of the Wampanoag Indians bring to the first Thanksgiving celebration? 7. On the first Thanksgiving, what were the Pilgrims thankful for? 8. How did the tradition of watching football on Thanksgiving Day start? _ 9. What famous parade is on Thanksgiving Day? Why is it on this day? _ 10:20-10:30 Number the sentences 1 through 8 to show the correct order. The Native Americans (Indians) taught the Pilgrims to hunt and plant corn. In 1863 President Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a holiday. The Pilgrims left England in search of religious freedom. Sarah Hale asked every president to make Thanksgiving a national holiday. In 1620 the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts. The Pilgrims invited the Native Americans to the first Thanksgiving. 4

5 The Pilgrims first winter was hard. Today, Thanksgiving is a day on which we give thanks to God for a good harvest. 10:30-10:40 Questions for Discussion What are some things you are thankful for? Does your family say grace (a prayer of thanksgiving) before meals? What foods are associated with Thanksgiving? What is your favorite Thanksgiving food? Who cooks Thanksgiving dinner in your home? What time of day does your family typically sit down to eat Thanksgiving dinner? What are some Thanksgiving traditions? What are some Thanksgiving traditions in your family? Do you think Thanksgiving is a family holiday? Why? What is your favorite Thanksgiving memory? What is your worst Thanksgiving memory? If you had to list your favorite holidays, what number would Thanksgiving be? Why? 10:40-11:00 Bible Study Jesus heals the sick woman Mark 5: Among them was a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered very much from many doctors and had spent all the money she had, but instead of improving, she was getting worse. 27 When the woman heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his coat. 28 She thought, If I can just touch his clothes, I will be healed. 29 Instantly her bleeding stopped, and she felt in her body that she was healed from her disease. bleeding = to lose blood ; suffer = to experience pain through injury, or sickness, or loss ; improve = quality or condition gets better; worse = getting bad; crowd = group of many people ; disease = harmful health condition 5

6 Jesus is the Healer! In the crowd around Jesus there was a woman who had a bleeding sickness (fibroid, Endometriosis?) for 12 years. She suffered from it so much. But she could not cure the sickness, even though she had spent all her money on many doctors. Then, the woman heard about Jesus who had healed many people that no one else could cure. She strongly believed that if she could just touch Jesus, her unfixable disease would be cured. She trusted Jesus. And then, right after she touched Jesus, her sickness was completely healed! She was so thankful for Jesus who is an amazing healer. Questions 1. What do we learn about Jesus in this story? a. Jesus is not a healer. b. Jesus is a healer. c. Jesus is in the clothing business. 2. Could her doctors cure the sick woman s disease? a. Yes, they could. b. No, they could not. 3. What happened to the sick woman who believed in Jesus, when she touched him? a. Her disease got worse. b. Nothing happened. c. Her disease was completely healed. 4. Do you think that Christ is the true healer? a. Not sure b. Maybe c. I haven t decided, but I want to know more about Jesus. 6

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