Shogatsu ( New Year )Shogatsu, the Japanese New Year is on Januarythe 1st.They eat rice cakes and beans for working hardand shrimps so people live longer. Japanese people get boxes filled with luck andNew Year food. Kids get pouches call Otoshidama filled withmoney and all say” Akemashite Omedetouwhich means happy new year in Japanese.
Hinamatsuri ( Girls day )Hinamatsuri or Girls day is one of the festivals myfamily celebrate. It is on March the 3rd and only lasts one day. Platforms covered in red carpet are used to displayornamental dolls representing the Emperor theEmpress, attendants and musicians . Some Japanese people believed that the dollspossessed the power to contain bad spirits.
Kodomo no hi (kids day)• This festival was celebrated on the 5th of 5th month.• It is celebrated in the honour of the birth of children.• It is mostly known as Boys Day or the Feast of Banners.• Samurai Armour and swords are displayed, koinobori or fish banners are hung outside and again they eat rice cake.
Tana bata matsuri (Festival to plead for skills)• This festival was important to the Empress Koken and it originated from the Festival to Plead for Skills.• Tanabata is a Japanese star festival and it celebrates the meeting of Oriheme and Hikoboshi .• According to legend the milky way keeps these two lovers apart and are only allowed to meet once a year during the festival.• Japanese people write wishes on pieces of paper and hang them on a tree.
Questions and Answers• Q. Why does my family celebrate these festivals?• A. Because my mum came from Japan and she wants my brothers and I to know Japans culture• Q. What do we do on these days?• A. On Shogatsu we say the Japanese New Year Greeting, on Hinamatsuri we eat pink rice cake and display dolls, on Kodomo no hi we put up fish banners we eat rice cake, on Tana bata matsuri we get a bamboo stick and write a wish on a piece of paper then we put it on the stick.