Today is Children’s Day in Japan

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Hey there,

こんにちは。May 5th has always been celebrated as the Children’s Day in Japan (Kodomo no hi こどものひ also known as  端午の節句). To mark this day, many Japanese families raise  fish shaped flags (koinobori こいのぼり). As you can see in the picture, there are more than a few black and red carps the because black carp symbolizes the father while the red carp is the mother of the family that raises the flags. Children can be any other color, most of the time vibrant and colorful carps…

Children’s day (kodomo-no-hi) was originally celebrated in Eastern Asia (China, Korea, Japan) on the 5th day of the 5th month according to lunar calendar to mark the start of the rainy season. In modern Japan, during the children’s day,  children eat  kashiwamochi which is a kind of rice cake wrapped with kashiwa leaves. There’s a good reason why Japanese kids eat kashiwamochi, it is because the kashiwa tree never fully sheds its leaves throughout the year, so if the kids eat kashiwamochi rice cakes on this day,  it is thought that the family can last forever just like a kashiwa tree that is alive all year long…

Additionally, during the children’s day (kodomo no hi) Japanese families with boys buy a Kabuto (sort of a samurai helmet) that can cost up to $1000. The day is a national holiday and a part of the Golden Week vacation. Dino Lingo thinks it would be really cool to be a kid in Japan during the children’s day…

Japanese lessons for kids

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