Created by Miss Musser for Diversity Course: EPI 0030 Instructor: Barbara Wright Childrens Day (kodomo-no-hi)
This is a national holiday in Japan celebrated on May 5th. Started in 1948, Children's Day is a festive day dedicated to celebrating the health and happiness of all children. The holiday is believed to have begun in china where they would hang medicinal herbs to ward off childhood diseases. In Japan it is often celebrated by giving children kites and hanging streamers. In Japan, the Children's Festival was originally called the Boy's Festival while the girls had the Doll Festival(March 3rd). The History of Childrens Day In Japan
On Children's Day, children fly kites - often in the shape of carp. Carp are strong and brave fish that swim upstream, so Japanese parents want their children to be strong and brave like the carp. Here is the Koinobori (Carp streamers) song. Words by KONDO Miyako, Music by Unknown Author (English Translation) Carp streamers are higher than the roof The biggest carp is the father The small carp are children Enjoying swimming in the sky.
Japanese Carp Kites Koinobori, literally meanskoi = carp and nobori = to climb These tubular kites when they catch the wind are suppose to represent carp swimming upstream.
Japans Childrens Day May 5 is Children's Day, when families celebrate the healthy growth and happiness of children. It became a national holiday in 1948, but it has been a day of celebration in Japan since ancient times. The fifth day of the fifth month was traditionally called Tango no Sekku and was a festival for boys. Girls have their own festival, called Hina Matsuri (Doll Festival), held on the third day of the third month. On Children's Day, families with boys fly huge carp-shaped streamers (koinobori) outside the house and display dolls of famous warriors and other heroes inside. The carp was chosen because it symbolizes strength and success; according to a Chinese legend, a carp swam upstream to become a dragon. In recent years, as more people have moved into apartments and smaller houses, the carp streamers have also gotten smaller, and there are now miniature versions that are decorated indoors. Also on this day, families often take baths sprinkled with iris leaves and roots. This is because the iris is thought to promote good health and ward off evil. Rice cakes wrapped in oak leaves and filled with sweet bean paste, called kashiwamochi, are also eaten.