Thanksgiving: The History and How to Celebrate

In this lesson about American Culture and History, you'll learn about the History of Thanksgiving and How to Celebrate!

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The American English Podcast

By Shana Thompson

Start listening at minute 9:06.

Today I’ve decided to talk about Thanksgiving. This will be fairly advanced for listening comprehension. So if you are having trouble understanding, you can always access the transcript on the web page at Information about that is inside the Classroom, and that should help if you’re interested in expanding your English vocabulary, phrases and much more. 

So first, I’m going to describe the origins of Thanksgiving. Then I will talk about the food. And then lastly, we’ll talk about how Americans celebrate Thanksgiving. 

Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday celebrated in Canada, the United States, some of the Caribbean islands and Liberia. It began as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. 

Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday of October in Canada and on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States. And it’s celebrated around the same time of the year in other places in the world. So this year, it will fall next week on November 28th. 

Although Thanksgiving has historical roots in religious and cultural traditions, it has long been celebrated as a secular holiday. The history of the first Thanksgiving is somewhat incomplete. However, we do know that it originated in England and it was brought to New England and Virginia by pilgrims and puritans. New England is that area around New York. It includes Maine. Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Massachusetts. States in that general area.


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Shana - ESL Teacher

Hi Everyone! I am an ESL teacher from California and the host of the American English Podcast. Learn more about me and my teaching experience here.

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