I’ve created “The Best…” lists for many, if not most, of the major holidays and celebrations in the United States. To locate them, just go to that link and find the “Holidays” section.
If, however, you’re looking for resources accessible to English Language Learners about holidays that I might not have covered, here are a list of sites that provide information on many different celebrations.
Here are my choices for The Best Websites For Learning About Multiple Holidays:
Heads Up English Holiday Lessons for English Language Learners.
Holiday Lessons from EL Civics.
American Holidays from Susan Schneider’s ESL Website.
Religious Festivals from the CBBC Newsround.
Self-Study Holiday Quizzes from Activities For ESL Students.
Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations From Around The World comes from “Topics Online Magazine,” a resource specifically designed for English Language Learners.
Calendar of Themes from Houghton Mifflin
Fact Monster has numerous resources on holidays
Holidays Worksheets from Lanternfish
If you type the name of a holiday into the search engine at the New York Times, the first item that pops-up is a page the newspaper has with basic information about the celebration and, more importantly, multimedia it has created related to the day.
The Canadian Association of Second Language Teachers has a Holidays and Special Days section on their website.
Renee Maufroid, an English teacher in France, develops a lot of excellent ESL/EFL online activities. You can find ones she’s created on a number of holidays by going to his site.
If you go to Edsitement and type in the query “holiday” in their search engine, you’ll find a number of resources. Many might be too advanced for ELL’s, but can be modified.
ESL Holiday Lessons has many good lessons about…holidays.
ESL PDF has many printable hand-outs on various holidays.
Mr. Donn has a good page called Ancient Roots of Modern Holidays.
Teaching Tolerance has numerous high-quality lesson plans on many different holidays and anniversaries.
Time and Date doesn’t quite fit in with the other sites here, but it does let you quickly determine the dates for holidays in pretty much any country and any year. It’s a good curriculum planning tool.
Pete’s PowerPoint Station has a bunch of accessible PowerPoint presentations on different holidays.
Teachers First has a Holiday Central filled with useful resources.
John’s ESL Community has simple explanations for many holidays.
Woodlands Junior School in Great Britain has resources on many national holidays.
Festivals and Celebrations – Quizzes, Games & Printable Worksheets is the title of a great page from ESOL Courses. It has links to resources pages they’ve put together for a bunch of holidays.
Julia Gillard’s American Holidays is a slideshow from TIME Magazine.
Celebrations & Festivals | Free Early Learning Resources for Teachers has some very useful materials.
CNN Celebrates is a special page on CNN’s site that highlights holiday celebrations from throughout the world.
I’d certainly be interested in hearing other suggestions, so please feel free to leave them in the comments section.