Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Holidays Around the World: Celebrate Independence Day with Parades, Picnics and

Holidays Around the World: Celebrate Independence Day with Parades, Picnics and

Deborah Heiligman
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
National Geographic, 2007   ISBN: 978-1426300745

It all began when the men and women who lived in the original thirteen founding colonies in America decided that they were no longer going to accept being dictated to by the king in England. The king either had to give them some freedom and rights or they were going to go their own way. The king refused to back down and the Americans had one of their number, Thomas Jefferson, write a “Declaration of Independence.” On July 4th, 1776 this declaration was adopted and for the following week it was read aloud all over the new country.

Much as they did on that first 4th of July, people often celebrate today in the streets with parades and block parties, large picnics, and dances. Today we wave our flags and sing patriotic songs as we watch the bands march by and afterwards we have a splendid time eating traditional summer foods such as watermelon, ice cream, hot dogs, burgers, and corn on the cob. We play all kinds of games on land and in the water and when evening falls there are firework displays to watch.

There are also quieter and more thoughtful ways to spend this special day. Some people like to listen to a reading of the Declaration of Independence while others like to remember those who have given their lives for American freedom.

At the back of this wonderfully presented book readers will find an additional section full of further information about Independence Day. There are directions for how to do a three-legged race, a recipe for deviled eggs, web site addresses of interest and much more.