Christoph’s Content Corner

Content Strategy Consultant, Head of Contet

writing an article about a celebration

  • by Christoph Trappe
  • December 8, 2023 December 8, 2023

Conference attendee turned storyteller: How to write an article about an event

writing an article about a celebration

Trappe Digital LLC may earn commission from product clicks and purchases. Rest assured, all my opinions are mine or of the arcticle's author if not me.

Conferences can drive leads and are a great way to connect with people in the industry while learning from speakers. But what about content strategy, and when does it make sense to write an article about an event that we attended?

Let’s dive into that topic, including:

Why should we write an article about an event?

  • Keeping a tally of ideas
  • Saving details
  • Prioritization
  • Production and goals

Let’s start with the why first. Events are significant, but they can also be fleeting. We go now, and once the event is done, it’s done. But they also included a ton of content we could consider using in our ongoing content strategy, and conference content can be pretty interesting. It’s different from the content we can create without leaving the office. That can include:

  • Answers to questions that people have asked
  • Observations on new trends
  • Takeaways from specific conference sessions

Given that people attend these conferences professionally, it should be easy to tie all these things back to the article you are writing and your business goals and improve your brand positioning. 

Read next:  Should I put a conference hashtag in my Twitter name when I’m attending a conference?

Once that article is created, it hopefully can help with the longer-term connection of your target audience.

The value of conference content hasn’t gone unnoticed, by the way. Some companies even hire event influencers that share conference content for them.

Here are my top six tips on how you can make content creation using conference content easier.

1. Keep a tally of content ideas for the article about an event

Not all content ideas are created equal, and conferences can keep us busy. However, unless your only job is to generate conference content, I wouldn’t recommend trying to write an article while also juggling on-site activitie s.

Just keep a tally of highlights in your notes on the phone. Or record a voice note to yourself to review later. Just make sure you leave enough details for yourself so you can remember what each content idea was about.

Read next: 8 ways to write content faster

There are a couple of ways to think about topics:

Conference related specifically

This usually leads to articles like “Top 20 sessions I saw at xyz conference.” These can be useful when your audience is interested in that conference. They might also build relationships with the speakers as they would appreciate that you enjoyed their session.

Read next:  Roundup posts: How to use expert quotes in your content strategy

The biggest problem with these kinds of articles is that they must be turned in quickly. For example, I attended a conference two weeks ago, and a brand told me which sessions they enjoyed in two more weeks. Why do I care?

Now, if they highlight some of the key takeaways from each session and offer a version with highlights that are useful to the reader, this could work nicely.

Topic related

Topic-related articles aren’t about the conference but about specific things learned while at the conference. An example could be an article that covers “Are these the latest trends in xyz?”

And then, the writer uses the information gathered in sessions to produce the content.

Other content types

Also, remember that not everything needs to be turned into an article. Some content certainly is better in the form of an article, but also consider other content types like:

  • YouTube Shorts

To keep track of things, you could record some voice memos on your iPhone, jot down some notes, or even use a voice recorder to keep a running tally of what you’re seeing.

writing an article about a celebration

2. Save some details

There’s a difference between an idea for an article and a start to an article. Make sure to write down some different details for each content idea. What would you write about, and what might be the key points? Sometimes, taking a picture of a PowerPoint session can help.

The essential tip here is that it’s hard to write an article from scratch when all we have is a working title. But having more source materials can be a good start.

Read next:  Content strategy: The importance of good source materials

3. Prioritize

Even if you jotted down ten fantastic ideas, it’s impossible to write an article about every single one today. Evaluate:

  • What would be most relevant to our content strategy and audience?
  • Which topics do we have something unique to say about?
  • Consider updating existing content with the new information (do you already have articles on related topics, and could they get even better with the new details?)

Make a list of articles that should be done first.

Starting with an outline – even in your head – helps. Here’s what you want to cover, the key points, and make sure to understand the “why would the audience care?”

5. Content production and goals

Content production can quickly get away from us. Meetings get in the way, and distractions can pile up. Before we know it, none of the ideas were turned into articles. So set a goal. Be realistic but also stick to it. For example:

  • Write two pieces by the end of the month
  • Record a podcast on one of the topics

Then get started on the production. Write the article with your unique thoughts and expertise in mind, and find a way to sprinkle your stories in there to make them truly unique. Consider when content creation works best for you, too. I know some people prefer to write later in the day, which I personally don’t like. My most productive content creation happens early in the day and morning.

Of course, remember to make sure your content is valuable and that you follow best SEO practices .

6. Publish and distribute

Once your content is published, throw it a parade and distribute it everywhere that makes sense . Use it in emails, social media, and maybe paid, and don’t forget to share it internally so others in the company can also consider sharing.

Conference content can be turned into content with a longer-term impact when done well. I know that every time I attend a conference, there’s so much potential content I could use for prioritization, and following these six steps helps me get things done without feeling overwhelmed.

Remember that if we create the wrong content or use the incorrect format, it might not perform. And when it doesn’t perform, it’s easy to say that writing articles at conferences doesn’t work. But in those specific cases, it didn’t work because we didn’t pick the proper storyline or format.

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Student Opinion

15 Prompts for Talking and Writing About the Holidays and the New Year

Share your traditions, weigh in on a seasonal debate, write a creative story or reflect on the year behind you while preparing for the one ahead.

Hands fill up plates from dishes of food on a table with a red tablecloth. A bowl with a green salad is in the center of the table, and next to it is a casserole dish of macaroni and cheese and a candleholder with six red candles.

By Natalie Proulx

Merry Christmas , happy Hanukkah , joyous Kwanzaa and happy New Year.

To celebrate the season, we’ve rounded up 15 prompts we’ve written over the years that you can use for writing or discussion in the classroom, among your friends or at your holiday gatherings. You might talk about your beloved family traditions, weigh in on a seasonal debate, write a holiday-themed short story or poem, or reflect on the year behind you and prepare for the one ahead.

Each of these prompts was inspired by a New York Times article, essay or image, and many of them are still open for comment for students 13 or older.

For more writing prompts and conversation-starters, see our related column .

1. What Holiday or Holidays Are You Celebrating This Month?

Hanukkah? Christmas? Kwanzaa? A combination? Something else? Use this prompt to talk or write about your own holiday celebrations — or those that other families have that you wish you could be a part of.

2. What Are Your Family Traditions?

Students who weighed in on this prompt told us about preparing 12 meals for Ukrainian Christmas, making the haft sin for Nowruz, lighting the candles on the menorah for Hanukkah and playing the game White Elephant. What rituals help you mark the holidays or reflect on the year?

3. What Foods Will Be on Your Holiday Table?

Food is an important part of holiday celebrations all over the world. What dishes will be on your table this year? You might talk about the best festive snacks and finger foods with this prompt , or take inspiration from Lunar New Year and share your favorite holiday food traditions with this prompt .

4. How Do You Decorate for the Season?

Traditional or modern? Over-the-top or more understated? Discuss the way your family decorates for the holidays — or how you wish it did — with these two prompts. How do you think you will choose to decorate your home when you are older?

5. What Role Does Religion Play in Your Holiday Celebrations?

Several of the winter holidays have religious roots. In “ Saying Goodbye to Hanukkah ,” a writer asks whether you can celebrate traditionally religious holidays without religion. What do you think? Read the essay and then use this prompt to talk or write about how much religion is a part of your life and your holiday celebrations.

6. Do You Look Forward to Family Get-Togethers This Time of Year?

The approaching holidays often mean spending more time with family members, who come from near and far. Who do you look forward to seeing this time of year? Do you enjoy large family get-togethers or do you find them overwhelming? Use this prompt to talk or write about your most memorable family gathering.

7. What Makes a Great Gift?

What are you giving this holiday season? What are you hoping to get, or what have you already received? Use this prompt to share your gift-giving dos and don’ts, talk about the best and worst gifts you’ve gotten and weigh in on the adage “It’s better to give than to receive.”

Or, use this prompt to debate the commercialization of Christmas and whether experiences make better gifts than physical items do.

8. Should Phones Ever Be a Part of Family or Holiday Gatherings?

Now it’s time for a holiday debate: Are phones and other electronics welcome at your family or holiday gatherings? Do you think they should be? Can they ever be helpful? Or are they a distraction from spending quality time with your loved ones? Discuss these questions and others with our related prompt .

9. What Will You Be Watching, Listening To and Wearing This Season?

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”? Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You”? An ugly Christmas sweater, perhaps? Use these prompts to debate the best and worst holiday films , share what’s on your seasonal playlist and plan your special holiday outfit .

10. What Can You Do for Others This Year?

This year, Nov. 29 was #GivingTuesday on social media, a day when you were invited to take a break from buying things, and, instead, show generosity to others. The Giving Tuesday website suggests thinking about it this way:

Whether it’s making someone smile, helping a neighbor or stranger out, showing up for an issue or people we care about, or giving some of what we have to those who need our help, every act of generosity counts, and everyone has something to give.

What do you have to give? What people, issues or causes are important to you? What can you do this holiday season to give back? Tell us here , and then get more inspiration from the Opinion section’s Holiday Giving Guide .

11. What Seasonal Story Could These Images Tell?

Related Picture Prompt

writing an article about a celebration

A magical gift. A sledding adventure. A family gathering. What story could these images from around The Times tell? Choose one or more of the holiday- and winter-themed picture prompts from the slide show above, and then write a creative short story, poem or memoir inspired by them.

Another option? Use one of these images to play Exquisite Corpse with your friends, family or classmates: One person starts by writing or saying aloud the first line of a story based on the image, and then another person adds on, and so on.

12. What Were the Best and Worst Things About 2022 for You?

The Times’s art and culture critics often end the year by compiling a series of “best of” lists — the best TV shows , movies , art , songs , podcasts , books , comedy , poetry , theater , dance performances and more .

What would be on your “best of the year” list? What would be on your “worst of the year” list? What art or pop culture did you love or loathe? What news, sporting events or viral social media moments did you think were great or terrible? What were the most notable aspects of your personal, family or academic life? Use this prompt to help you make your “best” and “worst” lists and then compare them to those of other students.

13. What Would You Pick as Word of the Year?

Every year the Oxford English Dictionary selects a “word of the year” that is meant “to reflect the ethos, mood or preoccupations” of the previous year. For 2022, the publisher chose “goblin mode.” What do you think of this choice? What is one word or phrase that you think sums up this year? Weigh in on our related prompt .

14. What Was the Best Day of Your Year?

When you look back on the past year, what would you say was your most memorable day? Were you celebrating a big life event or achievement, like getting your license? Or were you doing something more mundane — perhaps talking to a friend on the phone, making a meal for your family or taking a long walk alone? What made that day so special to you?

Even though this prompt was written in 2021, you can still use the article and questions to take some time to appreciate your favorite day of this past year.

15. Do You Make New Year’s Resolutions?

As one year ends and another begins, will you take stock of all that you have (or haven’t) accomplished and make resolutions for the year ahead? Or, like other Gen Zers, according to this article , do you set goals all year round? Use this prompt to talk or write about the various goals or self-improvements you are currently working toward, as well as those you’d like to focus on in the New Year.

Students 13 and older in the United States and Britain, and 16 and older elsewhere, are invited to comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff, but please keep in mind that once your comment is accepted, it will be made public and may appear in print.

Find more Student Opinion questions here. Teachers, check out this guide to learn how you can incorporate these prompts into your classroom.

Natalie Proulx joined The Learning Network as a staff editor in 2017 after working as an English language arts teacher and curriculum writer. More about Natalie Proulx

How to write an excellent event recap

lightbulb drawing outline

Opensource.com

You've put on and held an event. Congrats! Now what? A post-event wrap up and report is a useful way for your community and attendees to follow up on key ideas and takeaways that could impact how they communicate, collaborate, and make decisions going forward.

A post-event wrap up is most useful within days of the event, and it's best if you can publish your piece within 48 hours of the event's conclusion. A wrap up report should be published no more than two weeks after the event. The news is a bit stale after that, so do your best to aim for 48 hours after the event. A week or less is OK too, but not optimal. Schedule time on your calendar for writing, as it's easy for this task to be deprioritized in the face of other needed work. Set aside time for writing or you'll likely find you don't get the writing done.

Pro tip: Schedule time no more than 24 hours after the event to write and publish your report. The fresher the news, the more readers you'll have.

Take good notes

Writing up a great event report means gathering data while at the event. Take the time to write down a few notes about things that particularly impressed you during the conference or meetup. Don't rely on your memory to keep track of the things that stood out to you, and write down as many takeaways from the event as possible. You will not use all of your notes, but the more detail you can later provide, the better.

Pro tip: Most post-event wrap up reports include the following items, so take notes accordingly. You may not use all of these details, but it is good to have them.

  • Event overview , which you can likely harvest from the blog post announcing the event, the event "about" page on their website or from sites like Lanyrd, Meetup.com, etc. You don't have to use the organizers' description, but it is often a good starting point.
  • Location of event , including thanks to whoever provided the space in the case of a meetup. E.g. "Red Hat graciously hosted the Boston Python Users Group meeting last Wednesday."
  • Number of attendees at the event. Some like to note the number of attendees from certain groups depending on the goals of the particular community hosting the event, e.g. "The organizers were excited to see 25% of our attendees were newcomers." or "We had more than 50 women join us at the conference, a 15% increase over last year." or "I was particularly proud of the efforts to reach out to the student community in Prague, with more than 40 students attending. Half of the students had not yet entered university."
  • Thanks to the event sponsors. While you do not need to call out the names of all sponsors, it is best practice to give a shout out to your employer specifically if they were a sponsor. In the case of one or two sponsors, it is best practice to name them and link to their home page in your thanks. In the case of an event with many sponsors, a thank you to them with a link to the event's sponsors page will suffice. If a sponsor did something truly memorable and appreciated, a specific thanks to that sponsor is always welcome.

Pro tip: Thanking event sponsors, particularly one's own employer, can be difficult to do without looking disingenuous. The most important thing to remember is to disclose your relationship with your employer in the blog post to avoid accusations that you're shilling. Consider the difference between these two thanks, both of which say basically the same thing, but will likely be received by your audience very differently:

I'm very pleased that my employer, Red Hat, treated everyone at the Foo Bar Meeting to coffee and treats. We're glad we could share a meal with all of you and provide a small bit of thanks for all of your contributions to FLOSS.

Is much better than:

Red Hat provided coffee and treats to everyone at the Foo Bar Meeting, which was totally awesome of them. Red Hat rules!

Take photos

Of course, you want to ensure that you have permission to take photos at the event. Confirm with the organizers if there's a photography policy and abide by it. Some FLOSS folks request that all photos taken during their events be published under a Creative Commons license, others forbid photos at their events entirely, and others request that attendees make use of photographs taken by the conference photographer.

Whatever the organizers request of you, honor those requests. Abiding by the conference photo policy makes it much easier to ask for an exception later should you need to do so. E.g., "I notice this photo is copyright [event name]. May I use it in my forthcoming blog post provided I give proper attribution?"

Being a good FLOSS citizen also means obtaining permission from the subjects of your photos to capture their image. Some conferences provide pins or other garb to attendees who do not wish to be photographed—keep an eye out for these indicators. If you don't see one, politely ask to take a photo of your fellow attendees and let them know you may use it on your blog or publish it on Flickr, etc. If they decline, respect their request. It is also best practice to let folks take a look of the photo you have taken to make sure they are happy with their appearance in it, but this step is not required. It definitely helps build good rapport with your fellow community members, so why not do it?

In general, group photos that do not show faces in the audience are well received even in those communities that are "camera shy." Get a good sense for your audience and photograph accordingly.

Pro tip: Capture or use the highest possible quality imagery. Suboptimal photos from your cell phone camera are better than no photos at all, but not by much. If you don't have a high quality camera, check the conference's photo pool for imagery that may be better or ask a colleague to snap a pic or two on your behalf. Ensure whatever content you use is licensed so that you may use it or that you obtain permission from the copyright holder to make use of it.

Session audio and video

If session(s) from the event are recorded, it is always good practice to at least link to those talk recordings. For a meetup or other event where only one talk was recorded, embed the recording in your post. For events where multiple sessions took place, choose your top one to three and embed those recordings. Make sure that you introduce the recordings with sufficient text—which can be quite terse, but must be present—so that your readers understand why they ought to take the time to watch the content.

Pro tip: Some videos feature automatic closed captioning for the hearing impaired and still others provide text transcripts of the audio/video recording. When versions of the content exist that provide these extra vectors of entry for your audience, ensure that you embed them or link to them.

Know how to tag your post and photos

Most event organizers these days are pretty good about letting folks know what tag(s) to use when sharing photos, tweets, Facebook messages, and blog posts. Make sure to note the tag(s) used and add to your photos and post.

Pro tip: If the hashtag for the event isn't prominently mentioned in the event guide or at the start of the meetup, don't hesitate to ask the question at the start of the festivities. You're not the only one wondering what tag(s) to use. If it's too difficult to ask this question up front, see if the event already has a photo pool or Tweet stream. Replicate the tags in use for the conference tweet stream or photo pool.

Pro tip: Consider using some sort of social bookmarking service to gather news and feedback from the event. It's possible that the event organizers have already set something up, so ask them if they have done so. If not, offering to set up the resource for them is a kind and wonderful thing to do when you're at an event run by community volunteers.

Gather extra materials

Perhaps you saw an outstanding network diagram in a particular presenter's talk or you noticed that a speaker did not plan to publish her slides. It's best to ask the speaker at the event for these resources, then follow up on your request by email. If you were not able to make the request in person, make sure to send your request by email quickly so you can include the materials in your post and get the post published in a timely fashion.

You will also likely find that other folks have written about the event and may have done write ups on sessions you missed. They also may have an alternate perspective on an aspect of the event you particularly enjoyed. Include links to other write ups and reports in the blog post—even a simple list of links is fine—and consider updating your post if you run across a particularly excellent write up of the event after you've published your report. Updating the blog post comments with additional details is a fine way to proceed, but folks are often less likely to read the comments section.

Pro tip: Before publishing your report, take a moment to search identi.ca and Twitter using the event hashtag. This quick search will likely produce other write ups that you may wish to link to in your own post. The conference news aggregator or press page is also an excellent source of such material.

Writing your post-event report

If you're having trouble getting started, prepare an outline of your post. Start with the basics as mentioned in the "Take good notes" section in your introductory paragraph, then expand from there. If you just hate writing—and that's OK, many do—get as many points out onto a page as possible, then ask for help from a friend or colleague to organize your thoughts and content. A blank page is a tough place to start, so don't expect what you compose to be immediately perfect.

Pro tip: If you are having trouble writing and outlines are not the best way to organize your thoughts, try these approaches:

  • Just write. Don't worry if it's not perfect or even coherent at first. Structure, proper grammar, correct spelling, etc. can be taken care of later.
  • Write down the 10-second pitch for the event and then write to address the high points that support that summary.
  • Talk about your experience at the event with a friend or colleague and ask them to jot down notes during your conversation. Let their notes become your outline. Alternatively, you may wish to use transcription software for this purpose.

Joe Ottinger, my colleague at Red Hat who also works on the Open Source and Standards Team, has penned some more tips on writing on his blog .

Publishing your post-event report

This document largely assumes that you'll be publishing your event wrap up post on your personal blog, but there are many outlets for such reports. The conference organizers may need help with wrap up reports due to post-event fatigue, so offering to help them with your post-event write up can be a welcome way for your post to get even wider exposure and to do a good deed for the community. The fine folks at Opensource.com also publish post-event reports, so check out their guidelines for submitting content. You may also find that your wrap up report will be useful to other trade press outlets or blogs, so licensing your content so that folks can reuse it increases the value of your creation. You may even find that said trade press outlet or blog would like to simply republish your post, which is a great thing to do if you're open to it.

Pro tip: Once you have written your post, make sure to share it using whatever social networking services you prefer to use. E.g., identi.ca, Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc. Make sure to also include the event tags when broadcasting via social media. If you're not a social media user, the event organizers may want to help you share the write up more widely via their social media channels.

Sample post-event wrap up reports

Here are a few examples of well written post-event wrap up reports, provided as a source of inspiration if you're having trouble getting started or just want to get a sense of what a good post-event report contains.

  • Recap: OpenStack Meetup April 26 features photos early in the post and includes video, a thanks to sponsors, and shoutouts to key community folks in attendance.
  • Developer conference 2012 part III: Workshops, hackfests, and more features a photo of the audience very early in the post without showing too many open seats and includes links to talk slides and videos as well as lots of detail on what the presentation topics were.
  • Schedule time to write and publish the report within 48 hours of the event. Block time on your calendar so it happens.
  • Along with your text about what you found most useful about the event, include photos and video or audio recordings, preferably embedded in the post. Linking to these resources is also OK.
  • Include important stats in your post that are relevant to the community attending the event, e.g. number of attendees, number of student attendees, number of committers, etc.
  • Make sure to thank the event organizers and sponsors in an appropriate fashion.
  • Once your post is published, make sure to share it via whatever social media channels you like to use. If you do not use social media, let the event organizers know about your post in case they'd like to use it in the post-event report outs or to add it to their event news page.

Reposted with permission from Hawthorn Landings.

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Celebrate to Win

  • Whitney Johnson

writing an article about a celebration

Taking a moment to acknowledge an accomplishment can actually serve as fuel for the next one.

Most of us don’t have a good plan to celebrate accomplishments. Individuals and organizations tend to have an “on-to-the-next” mindset, as though it is contrary to productivity and efficiency to relish, even briefly, reaching our objectives. Nothing could be further from the truth. Celebration is an important opportunity to cement the lessons learned on the path to achievement, and to strengthen the relationships between people that make future achievement more plausible. The author describes four moments that can be used to celebrate meaningfully.

As adults, we are often much better at work than we are at play. In fact, we seem to turn play into a form of work, one at which we are sadly less competent. Take, for example, office retirement and birthday parties, complete with balloons, pastries, and the requisite crudité platter. It’s usually a drop-by-between-meetings party. Say hi. Grab a plate of goodies to eat, alone, at your desk. Even the guest of honor may only do a fly-by.

writing an article about a celebration

  • WJ Whitney Johnson is the CEO of Disruption Advisors, a tech-enabled talent-development company and author of Smart Growth: How to Grow Your People to Grow Your Company .

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TWO WRITING TEACHERS

A meeting place for a world of reflective writers.

Writing Celebrations…But Why?

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You can tell a lot about a person by what they choose to celebrate. Recently, I was able to sit in on a 7th grade Information Writing Celebration.  After participating in historical fiction book clubs, students selected a topic within the time period of their novel to learn more about.  Students read terrific books like Lions of Little Rock, by Kristin Levine, The King on Mulberry Street by Donna Jo Napoli, Saving Zasha , by Randi Barrow, and Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson.  Consequently, students delved into topics like segregation, immigration, war dogs, slavery, etc. to build their knowledge for informational writing in writing workshop.

Early in the process, students knew who their audience would be– parents, teachers, administrators, other school personnel (like me), and their peers would be reading their writing.  So…how did knowing this affect them as writers? I wondered.  Knowing that on a certain date, a celebration would be held and that an authentic audience would be assembled for their writing, what kinds of effects did that have on them as writers?  I decided to ask them, and I found what these seventh graders said to be quite instructive:

“It made me challenge myself more,” responded Luke.  “I tried harder to make my writing the best it could be.  I don’t think I would’ve done that otherwise.” Samantha said, “I felt like there was more pressure on me, but that was good.  It forced me to try to make my piece the best it could be.” “It was terrifying!” Julian told me, eyes nearly popping from his head.  “I was really, really nervous.  But once I started to hear and read feedback on my writing from someone other than my teacher, it made it worth it.”

So…Why Celebrations?

Having spent my career in middle schools (23 years and counting), I understand the kinds of pressures a segmented, unforgiving middle school schedule can impose on all involved, especially the teachers.  With special schedules, snow days, professional development days, concerts, assemblies, field trips– teachers often begin asking me, “How can I possibly fit in a writing celebration?!  There goes another day!”  And you know what? They’re right.  Having taught for 15 years in seventh and eighth grade classrooms, I sympathize with concerns about time and the need to cover required curriculum.

However, according to one of my great mentors, Dr. Mary Ehrenworth, “An [important] kind of response [we can provide to our kids] is going to be making a really big deal of their publishing.  If they write, and it goes into a milk crate, kids stop writing.”  Mary suggests that if teachers are the only audience for student writing, we lose an opportunity- we lose an opportunity for authentic engagement, student agency, and real excitement that can only be generated by a wider audience.

I think of writing celebrations as akin to reading the final chapter of a book.  When I recently came to the end of Forge , a terrific historical fiction book by the incredible Laurie Halse Anderson, I didn’t stop before the last chapter– I finished it! As readers, we would never dream of not reading the final chapter of a book we have put in the time and effort to read.  So, why would we publish something so that only one person could read it? Now, perhaps this comparison doesn’t resonate with you, but allow me to offer my top three reasons to make time for celebrations:

  •   Writers write for an audience…and celebrations provide an audience.  Everything we do in writing workshop, as much and as often as possible, is meant to closely mirror what real writers do in the real world.  And one thing writers do is write for an audience. Deb Frazier recently wrote a great post about authentic audience here .
  • Implicit messages matter because they help to nurture a writerly identity.  The value we place on writing helps nurture a writerly life.  When during the course of a busy school year, a teacher is willing to prioritize the celebration of writing, this sends a powerful and important unspoken message.  Stacey Shubitz once wrote about showcasing not just products but process during writing celebrations.   She wrote, “…Celebrating a child’s unique process shows the child that their way of doing things is valued and respected in the classroom.”
  • Celebrations are fun!  In the rigorous academic world in which we all now teach and coach- a world which worships standards, accountability, rigor, testing, data, objectives, evaluation, etc. (none of which inspired any of us to enter this sacred profession, I’m guessing), why not take one day- one period- to celebrate writing and acknowledge our writers?  Especially when the benefits are so contributory to what we are trying to achieve as writing workshop teachers.

Types of Celebrations in Middle School

Over the years, I have experimented with different types of writing celebrations.  Here are a few to consider:

Museum Celebration:   The celebration I discuss above was a version of a “Museum Celebration.”  During a museum celebration, writers are invited to place their published piece of writing in front of them, right next to a paper entitled, “Feedback for ______ (student’s name here).”  Then, when the celebration is to begin, all writers (including the teacher, hopefully) stand and find a piece of writing to read and respond to on the feedback sheet.  Once a reader finishes, s/he looks around the room to find another piece to read.  Self-regulating, simple and elegant, this type of celebration is low prep and worth the small amount of effort, as students typically love receiving feedback from their peers!

Small group read alouds:  As a teacher, I loved to invite parents and guardians into my classroom to participate in writing celebrations.  Typically, I would send out an invitation ahead of time that included an RSVP- this would provide me with a general estimate on how many guest listeners would be in the room that day.  I liked to set up these celebrations as small group read alouds, working to be sure attending parents were spread across groups of writers.  After a short welcome and introduction, writers would begin sharing their pieces one by one, with applause following each one!

Author’s Chair:  Author’s chair is a format I like to employ when pieces were short- like original poems or vignettes.  I found that students were typically reluctant to volunteer toward the beginning of class; but once one or two writers have taken the chair to share their work with the class, most others clamor for their opportunity.  Note: Recognizing this format rewards extroverts and likely produces anxiety for my introverts, I would usually reserve the last few minutes of the celebration for small group sharing.

Principal’s Choice Award:  This is a new idea a colleague and I decided to pilot, and it proved to be successful.  During the aforementioned information writing unit and subsequent celebration, students created and published Google sites.  Parents were invited to come be an audience for the seventh grade writers.  During the celebration, both students and parents were invited to select and nominate an informational piece to be reviewed for a “Principal’s Choice Award.”  Our principal then reviewed those nominated and selected one to be acknowledged on our morning announcements and Tweeted out for public viewing.  The site was also posted on our Library Media Website.

Writing Celebrations pic

Whatever way you choose to celebrate your students’ writing- whether it’s in-person or digital in some way- know that you’ve made an important decision to support their writerly identity.  You are weaving into your teaching a crucial, yet underappreciated facet of a writer’s life: that is, we write to be read .  And that can act as a contagion for some writers, leading to not just more skill, but more love for writing.  And isn’t that something we want for all our writers?

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writing an article about a celebration

Published by Lanny Ball

For more than 29 years, Lanny has taught, coached, presented, staff developed, and consulted within the exciting and enigmatic world of literacy. With unyielding passion and belief in the possibility of workshop teaching, Lanny has worked to support students, teachers, and school administrators around the country in outgrowing themselves as both writers and readers. Working first as a classroom teacher, then as a coach and TCRWP Staff Developer, Lanny is now a literacy specialist, working and living in the great state of Connecticut. Outside of literacy, he enjoys raising his three ambitious young daughters with his wife, and playing the piano. Find him on this blog, as well as on Twitter @LannyBall. Lanny is also a former co-author of a blog dedicated to supporting writing teachers and coaches that maintain classroom writing workshops, twowritingteachers.org. View all posts by Lanny Ball

5 thoughts on “ Writing Celebrations…But Why? ”

Nothing like an authentic audience! In addition to the excitement of having classroom “guests”, it is often only during these planned events that classmates have the time to enjoy and reflect upon each other’s work beyond existing partnerships.

Like Liked by 1 person

This is so true, Victoria! When students’ writing is given the light of day, there’s a whole new dynamic that is created. I think it helps add another dimension to their identity, one rarely on display in a communal setting.

There are so many great ideas in this post, Lanny!

I appreciate the analogy you made about not stopping before the last chapter of a book. No reader would ever do that! Hence the reason we must make publishing/celebrating/reflectingike the “final chapter.”

Thanks, Stacey! I’m glad the final chapter comparison worked, as it hopefully helps to emphasize the importance of celebrating our writers.

This post couldn’t have been more perfectly timed! I am presenting on The Cartonera Project: Every Student an Author at the USM Spark Conference later this morning, The Cartonera Project is a schoolwide celebration of writing and I am hoping to grow it to other schools. (More info here: http://tinyurl.com/y95savmm ). Celebrating our students writing — both the process and the product — is such a huge component that is often passed over. I loved everything about your post, Lanny. It connected with my heart. ❤️

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Oxford House

  • How to Write a Great Article in the Cambridge B2 First Exam

writing an article about a celebration

  • Posted on 11/12/2019
  • Categories: Blog
  • Tags: B2 First , Cambridge Exams , Writing

Writing in your only language can be a challenge, but writing in another language can be a complete nightmare ! Where do you even begin?

If you are taking your Cambridge B2 First exam you’ll have to write two texts in an 80-minute period. In part 1 you must write an essay but in part 2 you will be able to choose between a number of options. This could be could be an email, a letter, a report, a review or an article.

Read more about the format of the Cambridge B2 First exam .

In this writing guide, we’ll focus on how to write an article for the Cambridge B2 First Writing paper – part 2. We’ll also share with you some tricks and tips for passing this part of the exam. You’ll learn how to plan your article, structure it, use rhetorical questions , exclamation marks – and lots more. By the end, you’ll have the confidence to write an amazing article in English!

What is an article and how do you write one for the B2 First?

You’ll find lots of examples of articles in magazines, newspapers and internet blogs. In these texts, writers share information, guides and opinions on specific topics. The idea is to write in a way that grabs the reader’s attention and keeps them interested until the very end.

In the Cambridge B2 First Writing Paper – part 2, you could be asked to write about a variety of topics. However, it’s often something you’ve recently learned to do or know a lot about. For example, the question might be about a concert you’ve been to recently, you favourite hobby or your hometown.

Here’s an example of a B2 First article question.

How to write an article - Cambridge B2 First | Oxford House Barcelona

Now let’s look at how to get started!

How to write an article in three simple steps

You’ve got the question in front of you, so now it’s time to start writing your article, right?

Wrong! If you do that, you’ve missed an essential stage: planning.

You can compare writing an article to preparing your favourite meal. No good tortilla de patatas was ever made without carefully preparing the ingredients first. It’s exactly the same with your writing – only, you’ll need fewer onions. Time management is also important. You only have about 40 minutes total so you need to plan your time carefully.

Here’s how to do it:

Step 1: Make a plan (10 minutes)

Think about the question.

Really focus on the question. Decide who your role model is. Is he or she a sporting hero you really admire? Or someone closer to home? It could be a family member that you look up to or a person in the community who’s done something amazing. Think about why they inspire you and make some notes on your ideas.

Think about the tone

Consider the best blogs you read on the internet. Are they relaxed and friendly? Or do they sound like boring school essays? The truth is most articles are quite conversational. They are somewhere between semi-formal and informal. They are often informative, whilst entertaining and engaging the reader. You can also try to add some humour in too!

Think about the structure

Structuring your article is key and there’s normally more than one way to do it. Decide which structure makes sense for the question. Try to keep it logical and include different ideas in different paragraphs.

Here’s an example structure:

  • Paragraph 1 Introduction Start with a catchy opening line to hook the readers. Then introduce your role model.
  • Paragraph 2 – Describe what makes them special Giving examples and developing your answer.
  • Paragraph 3 – Why you chose them as your role model This should be like a conclusion and give the reader a lasting comment or a question to think about.

Note: For many articles four paragraphs will be more appropriate – it depends on the question you are given.

Linkers are a fantastic way to organise your ideas. Experiment with some of these in your next article:

For a start…

Not to mention…

On top of that…

*Remember, you don’t need headings or titles in the article it should read as one continuous piece of work.

Think about vocabulary

Brainstorming vocabulary is a great way to get your ideas flowing . What are some great words related to the topic? List some adjectives for being a good role model. Pick out some verbs related to motivation or any good nouns or collocations you think would work. Throw some phrasal verbs and idioms in there too!

Here’s an example for the question above:

Write an amazing Article - B2 First | Oxford House Barcelona

Think about ways to personalise your writing

Articles tend to have a personal touch. You can be a lot more familiar with the reader addressing them personally with pronouns like ‘you’ and ‘I’. Give your own opinion and also use contractions. Here are some more ways to sound personal:

Have you ever wondered…?

I’m sure you can imagine…

Can you believe…?

I will never forget…

There’s nothing more amazing than…

If you ask me…

Step Two: Write it (25 minutes)

An interesting introduction is the key to a first-rate article. You want to capture your audience’s attention whilst making it clear what it’s going to be about. Start with an opening line that sets the tone of the topic. Try to catch the attention from the first word. Here’s an example:

Firefighters and superheroes are obvious role models. But sometimes the person that inspires us the most is so much closer to home. I have never had a favourite singer or sports star but my father has always been an important inspiration for me.

Next, think about the original question. What makes your role model special? Remember to keep it interesting and include some personal feelings. Use exclamation marks like this:

One of the things that makes my father so special is that he always does everything for his family, and he’s an excellent listener too. Whenever we have a problem he’s always there for us. Not to mention the fact that he’s also really fun-loving! If there’s a party, my dad is the first person on the dancefloor.

But only include one or two exclamation marks in the article or they’ll lose their impact.

Finally you want to tackle the last question. Why did you choose him as your role model? A great technique here would be to address your reader personally and even include a rhetorical question at the end. This gives them something to think about. A little bit like this:

I think my father is the best role model because he is the most hardworking person I know. He has a really difficult job as a doctor and is always saving lives. That’s so inspiring for me!

I really look up to him and he really pushes me to be the best I can be. Wouldn’t you want a role model like my dad?

Step Three: Check it (5 minutes)

Everything has come together and you’ve got your final article. Now you can sit back, relax and put your feet up until the examiner says stop. Wait, not quite!

You’re missing the last important step. Always check your writing. You’d hate for all your hard work to be wasted at the last moment. Here are some things to check for.

  • You included everything in the question
  • You’ve used a variety of sentence lengths
  • The spelling is correct
  • It’s personal and engaging
  • You haven’t repeated the same vocabulary too often
  • It’s not too formal

What are the examiners looking out for?

To get the very best results, you need to know what the examiners are looking out for when they are marking your writing.

These are the four most important things to consider:

How to write an article - B2 First - What are the examiners looking for | Oxford House Barcelona

Ask yourself these questions when checking your work and make any necessary changes before the time is up!

Any other advice for writing an article?

Read, read, read. Go online and search for blogs in English that interest you. If you love sports, look at the sports news. If you prefer fashion, find fashion articles. Whatever it is read real examples for real inspiration!

If you’re still not confident about writing in English, or you want some help preparing for the B2 First exam, take a look at our exam courses .

You can also check out our articles on how to write an Essay or a Review in the Cambridge B2 First.

Glossary for Language Learners

Find the following words in the article and then write down any new ones you didn’t know.

Nightmare (n): : a bad dream.

Rhetorical question (n): a question that doesn’t need to be answered, for dramatic effect.

Time management (n): the way to use your time effectively.

Look up to somebody (pv) : to admire someone.

Humour (n): something amusing or funny.

To hook (v): to attract and captivate your attention.

To flow (v): to move steadily and constantly.

First-rate (adj): excellent, top quality, well made or done.

An exclamation mark (n): this punctuation symbol: !.

To tackle (v): dealing with a challenge or something difficult.

To put your feet up (exp): to rest and relax.

pv = phrasal verb

adj = adjective

exp = expression

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A Black Friday Guide to Shopping in English

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How to plan a writing celebration in writing workshop.

You finished your writing unit and kids worked hard to plan, write, revise, and edit their stories. You worked hard conducting mini-lessons, conferencing, and guiding kids to become better writers. The writing unit is over and you’re about to start a new genre.

But, wait! Celebrate all of that hard work with a writing celebration!

A writing celebration is not just a way to acknowledge the hard work that went into writing the current pieces, but it’s also a way to remind kids of everything they learned, as well as motivate kids for the next genre (unless it’s your EOY writing celebration)! Kids love to share and celebrate and knowing they’ll partake in a culminating event helps to motivate them throughout the unit.

You and your students have worked with their writing throughout this genre, unit, or year! End with a writing celebration for your little authors! A publishing party is a great way to review all of the writing strategies learned in the current unit, set writing goals, and share writing pieces. Read this post for tips on planning your writing celebration and ideas for fun ways to celebrate.

What to include in your Writing celebration

At the end of your writing unit, have an author’s celebration, or publishing party. Each celebration can be different and they don’t have to be complex. The basic components include sharing work and celebrating everything learned about writing in that genre.

A note on publishing: I don’t ask students to rewrite their stories for publishing. This is definitely overwhelming in kindergarten and first grade, especially if it spans across pages. Our publishing consists of coloring in the pictures if needed, adding a cover (which I staple onto a large folded piece of construction paper and place the pages inside), and an About the Author page.

That said, there are times when a student wants to rewrite their piece and that’s fine with me.

1- Review the Writing Genre

Gather students and ask them to tell you everything they learned about writing in that genre. Write these on a chart. This will be a helpful reference when kids leave feedback for their peers.

Review the writing genre with students before the author's celebration. This will be helpful when they are leaving feedback for their peers.

If it’s your last writing celebration of the year, you may want to review the genres you learned throughout the year as well.

2- Writing Celebration: GALLERY WALK

Ask students to pick one of their “published” (finished) pieces of writing to display at the “writing museum.” Tell them they will get a chance to read others’ work and leave feedback.

Give each child 3 post-it notes. Allow them (if possible) to walk around the room and read 3 different stories, leaving feedback on the post-it note and making sure to add their name to the bottom.

The first time you have this type of celebration, you will want to teach kids what types of feedback are helpful, as well as how to leave suggestions in a tactful way (see next section). If you are teaching kindergarten, you may even want to focus on positive feedback and discuss as a class overall suggestions, rather than have kids write both on a post-it.

Host a Gallery Walk! Have each student choose a favorite finished piece of writing to display. Read this post for more author's celebration tips!

Teaching Kids to Give Feedback

If this is the first time students are asked to leave feedback for one another, you may get a ton of “ I like your story .” or “ Nice pictures. ” You may even see “ This is sloppy !”

Most kids don’t inherently know how to give constructive feedback so it’s important that you take the time to teach them. It can make the difference between a child beaming or crying when reading their feedback! Plus, when kids learn how to give constructive feedback, it also helps them learn more about good writing.

First, let kids know they will get to enjoy their peers’ work and give feedback. Tell them it’s important to give positive and specific feedback to help each other grow as a writer.

Have a couple of books ready that have simple reviews (you can find many on the back covers of books). If the reviews are long, just pick a sentence or two to read and discuss with your students. Why are these reviews great? Make a chart with key elements to include in a review:

Before an author's celebration it's important to teach students how to give feedback to their peers.

Write a list (with their help) on the board. Some examples: I love your pictures. You have great details! I like the part when . . . Your handwriting is very neat!

For more advanced writers, encourage them to be specific and even refer to what they’ve learned from other authors. For example: When you described the roller coaster ride, I could really imagine what it felt like. You used Show, not Tell just like Julie Brinckloe! I like how you compared how soft your dog was to cotton balls.

Next, teach kids how to give suggestions for improvement. Use obvious examples. Say, “Should you write ‘ This is terrible! ‘? No way! Instead, you can write what the author can include to make it even better! For example, instead of writing, “ This is so sloppy! ” you can write, “ If this was a little neater, it would be easier to read. ”

Make a chart with “Instead of…” and “You can write…”

Before an author's celebration it's important to teach students how to give suggestions to their peers.

Allow a few minutes for kids to share about the stories they read: first, the positives, then have a conversation about things that made reading the writing difficult.

Without mentioning names, kids can tell the challenges they had when reading. Among these may be:

  • sloppy writing
  • misspelled words (you may want to discuss inventive spelling )
  • missing capitalization or punctuation
  • missing information
  • events were out of order

Make a chart of these to use for making writing goals in your next writing unit! To help your students learn strategies for specific writing challenges read this post: HOW TO GET STUDENTS WRITING INDEPENDENTLY DURING WRITING WORKSHOP .

This is also a good time to set writing goals! Make a list of things they can improve on and ask students to choose a goal to work on. Place their name on a post-it note next to the goal. I like using post-it notes so they can be moved as students’ goals change.

4-End your Writing Celebration on a positive note

Remind kids that when they started this unit, they had no idea how to write a (insert writing genre product here). Now, they have learned so much that will help them any time they are writing said type of piece. Let them know what the next writing genre will be and show them excitement about how they will learn to create a fantastic writing piece in that genre!

I like to end with a snack while kids are reading their feedback post-its, and either a cool pencil, sticker, or certificate they can take home to share about with their families.

Other Writing Celebration Ideas

Like I said before, each celebration can be different! The important components are celebrating everything learned and sharing writing. Setting goals can also be a part of your celebration or the beginning of your next genre.

Here are some alternate ideas to a gallery walk:

  • Have partners sit around the room and take turns reading their writing to each other, leaving feedback for one another only.
  • Keep kids at their tables and have one student share their story with the entire table. You can make a simple “crown” for the author to wear while reading. I made one by drawing a crown with gems on construction paper, gluing to a sentence strip, and laminating. Instead of stapling, just use paper clips to hold crowns together, so you can adjust them for each speaker.
  • Invite another class in and pair up students to share their writing. If you teach first, invite a kindergarten class. This can be motivating for the younger students, while the older students will beam with pride!
  • Invite parents to join in the celebration! I usually did this at our last author’s celebration of the year. We decorated pizza boxes and filled them with our writing from the year and parents came in and sat with their children and listened as their child shared their writing. If the weather was nice, we took blankets outside and had a picnic author’s celebration.

A simple way to have an author's celebration is for students to share their story with their table!

More celebration tips

  • Look through your students’ writing to ensure they all have at least one published piece of work to share at the celebration.
  • Have them create an About the Author page with information about themselves! Add their pictures and hang them up around your room for your gallery walk.
  • Optional: Decorate the classroom to make the room a bit festive. You don’t have to go crazy with balloons and centerpieces, but a few streamers or even a celebratory message displayed on your whiteboard will get your kids excited about the celebration!
  • Don’t forget to take a class picture of your students holding their writing pieces! Add this to your end-of-year slideshow or to students’ writing portfolios or end-of-year memory books.
  • After your writing celebration, place these new books in your class library for students to enjoy reading!

Don’t worry about making your author’s celebration fancy. Instead of spending too much time on decorations or gifts, just remember the 2 big ideas: reviewing what was learned and sharing writing. Students will feel special sharing and having their hard work acknowledged. Don’t forget to share how proud you are of their accomplishments and how excited you are to see what they write next. Your enthusiasm will be contagious to your little writers!

I’d love to know what you think of these ideas! Let me know if you’ve ever had an Author’s Celebration and what you incorporated in it!

Reader Interactions

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May 11, 2022 at 4:52 pm

In first grade we had a Hollywood Walk of Fame for our authors. We made a red carpet with red butcher paper. We made stars with their names and taped them on the edges of the Red carpet, so they could see their names as they waked, The teacher’s and other support staff took out our phones and snapped pictures of them and we played Hooray for Hollywood on the loud speaker. All the students were wearing Sun Glasses! They had so much fun and they sat and the principal read some of their book out loud and they enjoyed popcorn and juice as a treat for their hard work.

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May 16, 2022 at 9:01 pm

Hi Maria, What a fun celebration! I’m sure the kids had a great time and will always remember it! Thanks so much for sharing your ideas!

Men in white priestly robes walk in a procession while holding candles through a hallway with ornate pillars and a wall with paintings depicting followers surrounding Jesus' body.

Easter 2024 in the Holy Land: a holiday marked by Palestinian Christian sorrow

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Roni Abusaad, PhD does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

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Every year, Christians from across the world visit Jerusalem for Easter week, walking the Via Dolorosa , the path Jesus is said to have walked on the way to his crucifixion over 2,000 years ago. Easter is the holiest of days, and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre , the site where Jesus is believed to have died, is one of the most sacred sites for Christians.

But not all Christians have equal access to these sites. If you are a Christian Palestinian living in the city of Bethlehem or Ramallah hoping to celebrate Easter in Jerusalem, you have to request permission from Israeli authorities well before Christmas – without guarantee that it will be granted. Those were the rules even before Oct. 7, 2023, when Hamas launched an attack on southern Israel . The Israeli response to the Hamas attack has resulted in even more severe restrictions on freedom of movement for Palestinians in the West Bank.

The site where the Bible says Jesus was born, in Bethlehem, and the place he died, in Jerusalem, are only about six miles apart. Google Maps indicates the drive takes about 20 minutes but carries a warning: “ This route may cross country borders .” That is because Bethlehem is located in the West Bank, which is under Israeli military occupation, whereas Jerusalem is under direct Israeli control .

As a human rights scholar and Christian Palestinian who grew up in Bethlehem, I have many fond memories of Easter, which is a special time of gathering and celebration for Christian Palestinians. But I also saw firsthand how the military occupation has denied Palestinians basic human rights, including religious rights.

A season of celebration

Traditionally, Palestinian families and friends exchange visits, offering coffee, tea and a cookie stuffed with dates called “ maamoul ,” which is made only at Easter. A favorite tradition, especially for children, is taking a colorfully dyed hard-boiled egg in one hand and cracking it against an egg held by a friend. The breaking of the egg symbolizes the rise of Jesus from the tomb, the end of sorrow and the ultimate defeat of death itself and purification of human sins.

For Orthodox Christians, one of the most sacred rites of the year is the Holy Fire . On the day before Orthodox Easter, thousands of pilgrims and local Christian Palestinians of all denominations gather in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. Greek and Armenian patriarchs enter the enclosure of the tomb in which Jesus was said to have been buried and pray inside. Those inside have reported that a blue light rises from the stone where Jesus lay, and forms into a flame. The patriarch lights candles from the flame, passing the fire from candle to candle among the thousands assembled in the church.

That same day, delegations representing Eastern Orthodox countries carry the flame in lanterns to their home countries via chartered planes to be presented in cathedrals in time for the Easter service. Palestinians also carry the flame using lanterns to homes and churches in the West Bank.

Deep roots in the Holy Land

Palestinian Christians trace their ancestry to the time of Jesus and Christianity’s founding in the region. Many churches and monasteries flourished in Bethlehem, Jerusalem and other Palestinian towns under Byzantine and Roman rule. Throughout this period and into the modern day, Christians, Muslims and Jews lived side by side in the region .

With the Islamic conquest in the seventh century, the majority of Christians gradually converted to Islam . However, the remaining Christian minority persisted in practicing their religion and traditions, including through the rule of the Ottoman empire, from 1516 to 1922, and to the present day.

The establishment of Israel in 1948 led to the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians, over 80% of the population , which is referred to by Palestinians as the “ nakba,” or the catastrophe . Hundreds of thousands became refugees throughout the world, including many Christians.

Christians accounted for about 10% of the population in 1920 but constitute just 1% to 2.5% of Palestinians in the West Bank as of 2024, because of emigration . Christians in the West Bank belong to multiple denominations, including Greek Orthodox, Catholic and various Protestant denominations.

Thousands of Palestinians rely on the pilgrims and tourists who come to Bethlehem every year for their livelihoods. Two million people visit Bethlehem annually, and more than 20% of local workers are employed in tourism . Another important local industry is carved olive wood handicrafts. In 2004, the mayor of Beit Jala, which borders the city of Bethlehem, estimated 200 families in the area made their living from carving olive wood. Christians around the world have olive wood nativity sets or crosses carved by Palestinian artisans, a tradition that has been passed down through generations.

Impact of the occupation

The neighborhoods of the occupied West Bank have been fragmented by the building of over 145 illegal Israeli settlements. Both Christian and Muslim Palestinians face huge barriers to accessing holy sites in Jerusalem .

Men wearing long green garbs walk in a procession and one in the center holds a tall crucifix.

Bethlehem is encircled by several Jewish-only settlements, as well as the separation wall built in the 2000s, which snakes around and across the city. Across the West Bank, over 500 checkpoints and bypass roads designed to connect settlements have been built on Palestinian lands for the exclusive use of settlers. As of Jan. 1, 2023 , there were over half a million settlers in the West Bank and another 200,000 in East Jerusalem.

The highways and bypass roads cut through the middle of towns and separate families. It is a system that former President Jimmy Carter and numerous human rights groups have described as “ apartheid .” This system severely restricts freedom of movement and separates students from schools, patients from hospitals, farmers from their lands and worshipers from their churches or mosques.

Additionally, Palestinians have a different license plate color on their cars. They can’t use their vehicles to access private roads , which restricts their access to Jerusalem or Israel.

Going far beyond separate roads, Palestinians in the West Bank are subject to a separate legal system – a military judicial system – whereas Israeli settlers living in the West Bank have a civilian court system. This system allows indefinite detention of Palestinians without charge or trial based on secret evidence. All of these restrictions on freedom of movement disrupt the ability of Palestinians of all faiths to visit holy sites and gather for religious observances.

Prayers for peace

The barriers to celebrating Easter, especially this year, are not just physical but emotional and spiritual.

As of March 25, 2024, the number of Gazans killed in the war had surpassed 32,000 – 70% of them women and children , according to Gaza’s health ministry. Israel has arrested 7,350 people in the West Bank , with over 9,000 currently in detention, up from 5,200 who were in Israeli prisons before Oct. 7, 2023.

Israel bombed the world’s third oldest church , St. Porphyrius Greek Orthodox Church, in Gaza in October 2023, killing 18 of the more than 400 people sheltering there.

Christian Palestinians in the West Bank suspended celebrations for Christmas in 2023 in hopes of bringing more attention to the death and suffering in Gaza. But the situation has only worsened. An estimated 1.7 million Gazans – over 75% of the population – had been displaced as of March 2024, half of them on the verge of famine .

Many Palestinians have long turned to their faith to endure the occupation and have found solace in prayer . That faith has allowed many to hold on to the hope that the occupation will end and the Holy Land will be the place of peace and coexistence that it once was. Perhaps that is when, for many, Easter celebrations will be truly joyful again.

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How Writing 'The Sicilian Inheritance' Led Jo Piazza to Investigate a Murder in the Family

'The Sicilian Inheritance' became a book, a podcast and a hunger to know the truth about what happened to a murdered matriarch

Courtesy of Jo Piazza

When I first started writing a novel loosely based on the murder of our family matriarch in Sicily, I didn’t want to know the real story. I wanted to let my imagination run wild. I wanted to craft the characters and the mystery in my head using only this nugget of information about a murder of a woman left behind while her husband made his fortune in America. 

But once my novel The Sicilian Inheritance was put to bed and in my editor’s hands, something told me the story wasn’t finished. I needed to know the truth about what happened to my great-great-grandmother Lorenza Marsala. I became obsessed with solving Lorenza’s actual murder and, because I am an incredibly thorough content creator, decided to make a true crime podcast about it.

My family has been passing down the tale of Lorenza’s murder for more than a hundred years. It changes depending on who is doing the telling, with numerous theories and tangents and mythologies involved. We are Italian Americans and we love embellishing and entertaining an audience with our lore. 

But what has always remained the same is the fact that our family matriarch was murdered before she could join her husband Antonino and five of her children here in America in 1916.

Theories abound about my great-great-grandmother's death

Some of my family members claim the murder was done by the local mafia, who they always refer to as the Black Hand. They believe that she was killed because the Black Hand wanted her land, or they wanted to steal her money after she sold it. One even believes she was working for the mafia herself.

My dad, who passed away seven years ago, always thought she was killed because she was a witch, or a healer, and that someone important died under her care and then she was killed in revenge for not being able to save them. Or maybe they just didn’t like witches.

Because this story might involve the mafia, the primary research isn’t without risks. I didn’t completely believe this until I spoke to Barbie Latza Nadeau, a reporter and expert in the Italian mafia. Barbie told me that there is still danger in researching mafia crimes, even if they happened decades ago.

“You always have to be careful what you're digging up when you're sifting through the ashes because you may end up stumbling upon something that someone doesn't want you to find out about,” she explained. “I'm not trying to scare you. I just think you just have to be vigilant.”

Some family members warned me not to investigate

Not everyone in my family is happy about my digging into the past either and many of them tried to warn me off of it.

My Uncle Jimmy cautioned me not to go to Sicily to uncover the truth. “Why are you opening old wounds?” he asked me. “ You're going to wind up starting our vendetta again.” He was joking, but also not joking. 

I’m not the first in my family to seek the truth. Many of my relatives have gone to the village of Caltabelotta, where our family is from, to try to find information and some have encountered weird things along the way. My cousin Laura  claims that when she mentioned Lorenza’s name to a local official, lightning struck the church in the town square. Another says they were thrown out of the town’s municipal office by the mayor when they asked to see her death record. 

Family members have found some birth certificates, but no actual proof about what happened to Lorenza.

How could I go about solving a hundred-year-old homicide? None of the people who were there are still alive. I had no idea how to get any records about a death in a foreign country, particularly one that happened so long ago. 

First: The Internet. Next: A Family Trip to Sicily

I started out on Ancestry.com, which gave me a birth and a death date for Lorenza. I quickly learned the limitations of research in the United States. There was no way I could solve this thing from my laptop at my desk. So last summer I packed up my entire family, including three kids under the age of seven, and set off for Sicily to do some original research on Lorenza Marsala. 

Could I find the official death record? Was there a police report? Was anyone prosecuted and if so are there records of a trial? I was about to find out.

There is another story that my family has passed down about what happened after Lorenza was killed: Her sons drew straws to see who would go back to Sicily to avenge her death. Many relatives believe that a son named Giuseppe drew the short straw and returned to avenge his mother by murdering her killers during a rabbit hunt and then disappeared. 

If that is true, surely some record of it must exist. 

When I arrived in Caltabelotta, I made my way cautiously up the mountain to the small town. Caltabelotta is beautiful, one of the most striking places you’ve ever seen and the road is narrow and winding. If a car speeds down the mountain,you have to pull over to let it pass. The old stone houses seem to spill off the jagged cliffs jutting out the top of the mountain. Clouds often shroud the very top, making the scene both beautiful and ominous. 

I had made an appointment in the local municipal office. The guides and interpreters whom I hired, Ciro and Ettore told me I would be better received with an appointment. I still worried.

Finding Clues in the 'Death Book'

But lightning didn’t strike when I mentioned Lorenza’s name in the commune hall and asked if I could see the record of her death. In fact, the town administrator brought out a massive, two-foot-tall cloth book, the Atti di Morte , or what locals call the “Death Book,” that listed every death in the village in the year 1916. 

The book is divided into two sections, A and B, both handwritten in careful cursive. There is one important difference between section A and section B—section A lists people who have died of natural causes, usually in their homes. The second is unnatural causes, accidents or homicides. The second is where we found Lorenza. It was the first real evidence I had that she had been murdered more than a century earlier. 

My entire body tensed up as I looked at the page. Here she was. This was real. It was no longer just a story told over cocktails at a family wedding. Lorenza Marsala was born here and died here, possibly in a terrible way.

At first, the town administrator and our translators didn’t think there was anything suspicious about Lorenza being in the book of unnatural deaths. She was a farmer in her fifties in 1916. Farming was dangerous business. Her death record didn’t list a cause of death, just the date, the time and the location where her body was found—five kilometers outside of town.

A suspicious finding, and a cold case warmed up

But just as the administrator was about to slam the book and head out to lunch, I asked him to look again. Something told me we weren’t finished. Call it the intuition of the great-great-granddaughter of a Sicilian witch. He reopened the book and looked at the one other entry beneath Lorenza’s. He gasped and his eyes widened. “There is something here,” he whispered in Italian. 

That other person was killed at the exact same time, in the exact same location outside of town as Lorenza. His name was Nicolo Martino, a name I had never heard before. A name no one in my family had ever heard before. 

It was clear, finally, that Lorenza’s death was no accident. In a time before cars or gas-powered farming equipment, it would have been rare for two people to die in the same location at the same time. 

For the first time since I heard this story as a child, I truly believed that my great-great-grandmother was murdered, but there was a lot more work to do to find out how and by whom. There were police reports to hunt down, court records to dig through, local elders to interview. It would take more than a year and another trip across the ocean to learn anything more.

But staring down at the book of deaths and seeing her name alongside a stranger is the moment I knew, perhaps because I have a little bit of that Sicilian with blood running through my veins, that the truth would absolutely be stranger than the fiction.

The Sicilian Inheritance is out April 2, and available for preorder now, wherever books are sold.

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  • Purdue heads to the Final Four, starting a celebration 44 years into the making

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DETROIT — The old Purdue coach took a seat while the celebration roared around him. Gene Keady had labored for this moment for a career and it never came. But now it has, and so he sat there smiling, an 87-year-old man with a piece of the regional championship net tied to the back of his cap. Zach Edey, who was two years old when Keady coached his last game at Purdue, had given it to him.

"I'm just glad to have it," said Keady, who won 512 games at Purdue, but never this one. And once coached a young Boilermaker named Matt Painter. “It’s kind of like a dream come true.”

⛹️  2024 MARCH MADNESS:  Men's NCAA tournament schedule, dates

Later, Edey would say, “You've always got to pay respect to those that came first. He built this. It doesn't go over our heads. He helped set this all up. To be able to pay him back and give him a little piece of net, it's the least I can do.”

Well, that and score 40 points with 16 rebounds.

Nearby, a woman in a black and gold Boilermaker shirt dabbed the tears in her eyes. Meanwhile, Painter watched his team cut down the regional title nets that had always eluded him and explained what was going through his mind.

“What I’ll reflect back on is not having to make that last speech at the end of the season that I have forever. That speech stinks. We’ve all got ‘em. Only one coach doesn’t get to use it,” he said.

“Happy for our players, happy for our fans, and happy for my man Gene Keady. It’s such an advantage to take a job and have a blueprint and have a program and have everything. Times change, schematic things evolve, but there are certain core principles that he instilled in our program that we just had to follow. It's not easy, but it makes it easier, that’s for damn sure.”

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And that’s the way it was the Easter Sunday Purdue basketball finally came out of its long, long shadow.

Forty-four years. That’s how long it has been since the Boilermakers could say they were going to a Final Four. Until Sunday, that is, when they survived an absolute trial by fire with Tennessee 72-66; a rite of passage so intense and so badly wanted by both sides, there were four jump balls when masses of players went to the floor fighting for the basketball, like football teams trying to recover a fumble. A match made magical by the duel between the Boilermaker center who is national player of the year and the Volunteer guard who is second on most ballots. Mano a mano, Zach Edey a Dalton Knecht. 

Forty points for Edey, 37 for Knecht. They combined for 77 of the 138 points – 56 percent of the points scored in an epic battle. And a late crucial play was as fitting as it was decisive, with Edey blocking a Knecht driving layup that cooked Tennessee for good. They each left nothing but admiration on the other side.

Purdue guard Braden Smith on Knecht: “He’s an unbelievable player and he showed it tonight. When somebody shoots the ball like that, there's just not a whole lot you can do.”

Tennessee coach Rick Barnes on Edey: “We were playing against a guy that has a unique game, obviously,”

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Purdue is going to the Final Four. The last time anyone could say that, ESPN had just been born, and CNN had not yet launched. You could get a gallon of gas for buck, and a hamburger at McDonald’s for 28 cents. Mike Krzyzewski was coaching at Army, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird were NBA rookies, there were professional sports teams called the Houston Oilers, Baltimore Colts and Montreal Expos. There have been eight U.S. presidents since then.

And as the long-suffering Boilermaker fans understand in their hoop-happy state, there have also been two national titles and four Final Fours for the school down the road at Indiana University. Even Butler made it twice. It was easy to feel haunted in March. Not anymore.

In those 44 years, Purdue had bounced from one heartbreak to another, like a pinball machine. Keady went to 17 tournaments and two Elite Eights but never broke through. Painter followed his mentor and went to 14 before this spring. Still, the gods of March were merciless. There were incredibly untimely injuries and tough losses, sucker punch after sucker punch.

National player of the year Glenn Robinson injured his back the night before the Elite Eight game against Duke in 1994. Local legend has it he was hurt in a pillow fight at the hotel with teammates. With a below-par Robinson, the Boilermakers lost the next day 69-60.

Robbie Hummel was three-time All-Big Ten player, but blew out his knee. Twice.

In 2018, 7-2 center Isaac Haas injured his elbow during a first-round victory and sat in the locker room afterward, assuring one and all he’d be OK for the next game. Within 30 minutes came the announcement that his elbow was broken and he was out for good.

The Boilermakers were within seconds of deliverance in the Elite Eight in 2019 when Virginia somehow turned a missed free throw and long rebound into a basket at the buzzer that forced overtime. The Cavaliers ended up the national champion.

Then came the past three painful years with losses against double-digit seeds, the awful nadir last year’s shocker to Fairleigh Dickinson.

Roll all that together and you had a star-crossed program with a tortured fan base, and a team desperate to change the narrative. Could anyone outside the Purdue circle possibly understand the hunger of those inside the circle to make the past go away?

“Zero percent chance,” said guard Fletcher Loyer. “I see fans crying, We’re crying. All the stuff we’ve been through, it’s awesome. A lot of weight off the shoulders, a lot more relaxing. But we’re not done.”

Painter has been the most conspicuous victim of this tournament wickedness, winning game after game during the season, stacking up Big Ten titles, but never able to get over the proverbial hump. “People say things about you and knock you,” he said. “You don’t like living with yourself at times.”

But no one could miss how well he has pushed the buttons on this team, right up to Sunday. The Boilermakers came in as the nation’s best 3-point shooting team but missed 12 of the 15 they put up against Tennessee. They missed 12 free throws. They were once down 11 points. But Painter and his team found a way, Throwing the ball to Edey, for instance. He shot 16 free throws in the second half.

“We've been through it all as a team,” Edey said. “There's no scenario we haven't been in before. We're never going to panic. We're going to keep playing, keep executing, keep doing what we do.”

So instead of walking back to a shattered locker room with his head down after an agonizing exit, Painter could savor the moment with his players on the court. Edey was in such a hurry to embrace his coach, he ran up and grabbed Painter just as he was about to shake Barnes’ hand. The Tennessee coach had to wait. “When that Mack truck comes at you what are you going to do?” Painter said of his center. “(Barnes) was very gracious to be able to give us that moment. He’s a class guy,”

It was an alternate universe from Fairleigh Dickinson only 12 months before. One of the first things Painter did after the game was find Gene Keady. “He should have been able to experience this because he deserved it,” Painter said. “And you feel a little bit of guilt right?”

But it would be hard to find anyone who does not believe Matt Painter finally deserved this moment.

“You get a lot of different people coming at you, and you’ve got to be strong in your convictions,” he said of the past. “I think we were strong in our convictions in terms of how we play and how we do things.”

And he has the most distinctive weapon in college basketball to help forget the dark days.

“I get to pay him back,” Edey said, “Like there were so many coaches that looked over me. I could name a coach that looked over me. Tennessee. Rick Barnes is a great coach, but he was at our practice, looked over me. It's kind of been the story of my life. People have doubted me. People looked past me. Can't do that anymore.”

Can’t say Matt Painter hasn’t been to the Final Four anymore, either. The man with the net tied to the back of his hat Sunday afternoon really liked that. “If it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t be here,” Painter said of his old coach. “He’s a special guy in my life,” Keady said of the former student who has just gone where he never could.

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A Proclamation on Second Chance Month,   2024

     America was founded on the promise of new beginnings.  During Second Chance Month, we recommit to building a criminal justice system that lives up to those ideals so that people returning to their communities from jail or prison have a fair shot at the American Dream.

     Every year, more than 650,000 people are released from State and Federal prisons, some leaving with nothing more than a few dollars and a bus ticket to start their new lives.  In total, over 70 million Americans have a criminal history record, which can make it hard to secure a steady job, safe housing, affordable health care, or a good education — all important things to have when trying to build a good life.  Studies show that when these needs are met, we do not just empower formerly incarcerated people — we prevent crime and make our communities safer.

     That is why, last year, my Administration released a comprehensive strategic plan to improve the criminal justice system and strengthen public safety. It includes over 100 concrete actions that my Administration is taking to boost public safety by improving rehabilitation in jails and prisons, helping people rebuild their lives, and reducing unnecessary interactions with the criminal justice system so police officers can focus on fighting crime.

     We have also invested nearly $1 billion in job training, addiction recovery, and reentry services across the country, and we have expanded access to Pell Grants so people can earn a college degree while they are incarcerated, starting over with new skills.  We are also helping folks find good-paying jobs rebuilding America on projects funded by our historic infrastructure law and expanding opportunities to serve in the Federal Government.  We are working to make sure those who have served their time have an equal opportunity to obtain health care, housing, education, and consideration for small business loans.  By meeting these needs, we not only empower people to chase their dreams and fuel our economy — we also prevent crime and make our communities safer and stronger. 

      At the same time, my Administration has taken historic steps to end America’s failed approach to marijuana.  Incarceration for marijuana possession alone has destroyed too many lives, particularly for Black and brown Americans, who have been arrested, prosecuted, and convicted at higher rates than other racial and ethnic groups.  In 2022, I asked the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Attorney General to start formally reviewing how marijuana is scheduled under Federal law.  I have issued categorical pardons for people convicted for simple possession and use under Federal and D.C. law while urging governors to do the same on the State level.  It is simple:  No one should be in jail or prison for using or possessing marijuana alone.  Meanwhile, my Administration has made historic investments to expand access to mental health and substance use services.  We have also provided $400 million to prevent juvenile justice involvement and make these systems more responsive to the needs of youth. We have provided over $3 billion in funding for education programs that provide support, services, and interventions, which keep students positively engaged in their schools and communities.

    If we pursue this work together, our communities will be safer, stronger, and more just.  It will make families and communities whole and help grow our economy, giving everyone a fair chance.  I have always believed that our Nation’s best days are ahead — and that is true for every single American too. This month, we recommit to fulfilling the fresh promise that every second chance holds.

     NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 2024 as Second Chance Month.  I call upon government officials, educators, volunteers, and all the people of the United States to observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

     IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-ninth day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-eighth.                                  JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

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  1. 50 Ultimate Tips for Writing an Article about a Celebration

    Here are 10 important statistics about celebrations: 1. Celebrations are a universal human experience, observed in every culture and society. 2. The global celebration industry is estimated to be worth over $500 billion. 3. The most popular celebrations worldwide include New Year's Eve, Christmas, and birthdays. 4.

  2. Essays About Celebration: Top 6 Examples Plus Prompts

    Top 6 Essay Examples. 1. Festivals by Everett Smith. "Festivals are part of one's custom, culture and tradition. They are there for us to celebrate. It helps us forget our routine. It gives us some momentary, mental and physical relaxation and thus frees us from die shackles of monotonous work.

  3. Article about an event

    1. Keep a tally of content ideas for the article about an event. Not all content ideas are created equal, and conferences can keep us busy. However, unless your only job is to generate conference content, I wouldn't recommend trying to write an article while also juggling on-site activitie s. Just keep a tally of highlights in your notes on ...

  4. 15 Prompts for Talking and Writing About the ...

    15 Prompts for Talking and Writing About the Holidays and the New Year. Share your traditions, weigh in on a seasonal debate, write a creative story or reflect on the year behind you while ...

  5. 122 Festival Topic Ideas to Write about & Essay Samples

    122 Festival Essay Topic Ideas & Examples. A festival is a celebration of some holiday, achievements, or other occasions for one or several days. Festivals can be religious, national, seasonal; they can be dedicated to arts, food, fashion, sports, etc. When working on a festival essay, it is essential to consider several aspects.

  6. How to Write a Party, Celebration Or Feast

    As a writer, you can use a celebration in your story to: Slow the pace, and give characters (and readers) a chance to relax, especially after a period of high action or tension. Reflect on what's happened. This is particularly in the Resolution at the end of the story. Build the story world by showing the reader what the characters consider ...

  7. How to write an excellent event recap

    Structure, proper grammar, correct spelling, etc. can be taken care of later. Write down the 10-second pitch for the event and then write to address the high points that support that summary. Talk about your experience at the event with a friend or colleague and ask them to jot down notes during your conversation.

  8. Celebrate to Win

    Celebrate to Win. Summary. Most of us don't have a good plan to celebrate accomplishments. Individuals and organizations tend to have an "on-to-the-next" mindset, as though it is contrary to ...

  9. How to Write a Celebration of Life Announcement

    Wording Example 3. Dear family and friends, please help us honor and celebrate the incredible life of Miles Anderson. Miles always brought more joy and contagious laughter wherever he went. We would hope you can join us in sharing a funny story, favorite memory, and a few light snacks with us.

  10. It's not just your nonprofit's anniversary

    An anniversary celebration should serve as a launchpad for your nonprofit's future. Inspire your audience by demonstrating a clear vision for the future and outlining the concrete impact and goals you are striving towards. Use this occasion to unveil exciting new initiatives, programs, or strategies that align with your organization's mission.

  11. Articles tagged as Celebrations

    The Surprisingly Radical Roots of the Renaissance Fair. The first of these festivals debuted in the early 1960s, serving as a prime example of the United States' burgeoning counterculture. Gillian ...

  12. Writing Celebrations…But Why?

    When during the course of a busy school year, a teacher is willing to prioritize the celebration of writing, this sends a powerful and important unspoken message. Stacey Shubitz once wrote about showcasing not just products but process during writing celebrations. She wrote, "…Celebrating a child's unique process shows the child that ...

  13. The Importance of Celebrating Your Traditions as an Expat

    Celebrating your traditions helps keep you grounded in your own culture while adapting to a new one. This is especially important when going through some of the phases of culture shock that affect many of us in the first months after moving overseas. Celebrating one of your traditional holidays can brighten up your mood for weeks as you become ...

  14. How to Write a Great Article in the Cambridge B2 First Exam

    Step Two: Write it (25 minutes) An interesting introduction is the key to a first-rate article. You want to capture your audience's attention whilst making it clear what it's going to be about. Start with an opening line that sets the tone of the topic. Try to catch the attention from the first word.

  15. Describe an important holiday (or festival) that is celebrated in your

    When this celebration takes place; What people do during this celebration; What you especially like and dislike about this celebration; And explain why it is important. ANSWER: Today, I am going to talk about an important holiday (or festival) that is celebrated in my country called Lunar New Year.

  16. Writing an article about celebrations worksheet

    It´s a lesson plan that includes the steps of teaching Ss how to write an article including the article outline. The theme of the lesson is celebrations so I have chosen "prophet´s birth" and I included a text about it so in case your Ss don´t know or have enough information, reading can be a good pre-writing task to make Ss get the ...

  17. Descibe a celebration or festival in your country

    Writing exercise for elementary students where they practice vocabulary like e.g. It takes place, it commemorates, etc There is also a strong focus on using present tenses when describing an annual event whereas we use past tenses when we describe an event we have witnessed in the past.

  18. 10 Ideas To Celebrate Your Writing Milestones, Achievements ...

    Whether it's a short story, an article, or a poem, take the leap and share your writing with the world. The act of submitting your work marks a significant milestone and opens doors to new ...

  19. 50 Latest Celebration IELTS Topics

    Write a letter to the restaurant manager. In your letter: Explain the reason for the celebration Give details of your visit to the restaurant Say what you would like the restaurant to do. Some think spending a lot on birthday celebration and weddings is a waste of money.

  20. Writing Celebrations Made Easy

    Writing Celebrations Made Easy. Completing a writing unit is a HUGE accomplishment no matter what grade level you teach. Whether you teach Lucy Calkins' Writer's Workshop, district mandated writing units, or some other writing curriculum, it is something to celebrate when your students come full-circle from the brainstorming to the drafting ...

  21. Celebrations

    Some people celebrate St Patrick's Day on the 17th of March every year. St Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland. On the 12th of July some people celebrate the Battle of the Boyne or Orangemen ...

  22. How To Plan a Writing Celebration in Writing Workshop

    1- Review the Writing Genre. Gather students and ask them to tell you everything they learned about writing in that genre. Write these on a chart. This will be a helpful reference when kids leave feedback for their peers. Make sure to review the genre before students give feedback. If it's your last writing celebration of the year, you may ...

  23. Easter 2024 in the Holy Land: a holiday marked by Palestinian Christian

    A season of celebration Traditionally, Palestinian families and friends exchange visits, offering coffee, tea and a cookie stuffed with dates called " maamoul ," which is made only at Easter.

  24. 100 Happy Easter Wishes, Greetings & Messages 2024

    100 Happy Easter Wishes, Greetings and Messages. 1. Joining you in gratitude for Christ's sacrifice and the joyful renewal it brings to all God's children this Easter season.

  25. What is Palm Sunday and how is it celebrated worldwide?

    2 of 3 | . FILE - Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, center, walks in a procession during the Palm Sunday Mass in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, where many Christians believe Jesus was crucified, buried and rose from the dead, in the Old City of Jerusalem, Sunday, April 2, 2023.

  26. How Writing 'The Sicilian Inheritance' Led Jo Piazza to Investigate a

    'The Sicilian Inheritance' became a book, a podcast and a hunger to know the truth about what happened to a murdered matriarch Courtesy of Jo Piazza When I first started writing a novel loosely ...

  27. Purdue heads to the Final Four, starting a celebration 44 years into

    For one of college basketball's most passionate fanbases, Purdue's victory over Tennessee sent the Boilers to the Final Four and erased 44 years of anguish in West Lafayette.

  28. A Proclamation on Transgender Day of Visibility, 2024

    On Transgender Day of Visibility, we honor the extraordinary courage and contributions of transgender Americans and reaffirm our Nation's commitment to forming a more perfect Union — where all ...

  29. A Proclamation on Second Chance Month, 2024

    America was founded on the promise of new beginnings. During Second Chance Month, we recommit to building a criminal justice system that lives up to those ideals so that people returning to their ...