ESL Holidays and Celebrations

holiday is a day set aside by custom or by law on which normal activities, especially business or work including school, are suspended or reduced.

Generally, holidays are intended to allow individuals to celebrate or commemorate an event or tradition of cultural or religious significance.

Holidays may be designated by governments, religious institutions, or other groups or organizations.

The degree to which normal activities are reduced by a holiday may depend on local laws, customs, the type of job held or personal choices.

Holidays and Celebration Exercises Matching

Saint Patrick’s day?Valentine’s Day
April Fool’s DayEaster
Father’s dayHalloween
Memorial DayThanksgiving
Mother’s dayChristmas
Independence’s DayNew Year’s Eve
Labor dayMartin Luther King, Jr. Day
New Year’s Day

Read  the sentences and complete them  by choosing one of the holidays above

  1. Celebrated on fourth Thursday in November:____________
  2. Celebrated  on January First:________________
  3. Celebrated on December 25th:_______________
  4. Celebrated  on the third Monday in January:____________
  5. Celebrated on February 14th:_________________
  6. Celebrated  on March 17th:_______________
  7. Celebrated on December 31st:__________
  8. Celebrated  on April First:______________
  9. Celebrated between March 22nd and April 25th:___________
  10. Celebrated  on  the second Sunday of may:______________
  11. Celebrated On  the last Monday in May:_______________
  12. Celebrated  on  the third Sunday of June____________
  13. Celebrated On July 4th:________________
  14. Celebrated  on September First:________
  15. Celebrated On October 31st:_____________

Holidays Reading and Listening Exercises

These are some reading and listening holidays exercises to help you master this topic

Reading Holidays Exercises

These are 11 reading holidays exercises. Just click on the link and you will be redirected to the exercise that you are looking for

HalloweenNew Year’s Eve
Independence DayLabor Day
Thanksgiving DayChristmas Day
Valentine’s DayMother’s Day and Father’s Day
Veteran’s DayMartin Luther King Day
April Fool’s Day

Holidays Listening Exercises

These are 13 holidays listening exercises. Just click on the link and you will be redirected to the resource that you need.

Everyday conversations: What’s your Halloween costume?
Everyday conversations: Thanksgiving in the U.S.
Everyday conversations: Holiday season in the U.S.
Everyday conversations: Christmas traditions

Independence Day Resources

Independence Day is a civil holiday for the celebration of the anniversary of the beginnings of national independence specifically

July 4 observed as a legal holiday in the U.S. in commemoration of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776

Independence Day Resources: Vocabulary


Independence Day Resources: Reading

A small town in the smallest state is home to the oldest Fourth of July celebration.

On July 4th 1777 citizens in Bristol (population 22,000) in the state of Rhode Island (population 1 million), fired 13 canon-shots representing the 13 states of the original United States. In 1785 the first parade was organized and every year since then Bristol has remembered Independence Day.

The Bristol Fourth of July Celebration involves the whole town. There is something for everyone, including a colorful parade, a Miss Fourth of July contest (and Little Miss for girls between 7 and 10), there is even a visit by a US Navy ship to Bristol harbor, and 13 shots are still fired from a canon.

In addition to these traditional celebrations there are also some modern events, such as a photography contest, a lottery, and a drum and bugle contest, and many official souvenirs can be bought. It is the combination of the traditional and modern that attracts so many visitors to the small town of Bristol for this famous Independence Day celebration.

  1. What’s the small town that is the home of the fourth of July?
  2. What do the 13 canon shots represent?
  3. What are two traditional activities that take place in Bristol?
  4. What are some modern activities that take place in Bristol?

Saint Patrick’s Day ESL Ideas

Saint Patrick’s Day or the Feast of Saint Patrick is a cultural and religious celebration held on 17 March, the traditional death date of Saint Patrick, the foremost patron saint of Ireland.

Saint Patrick’s Day Vocabulary

Check this common vocabulary about Saint Patrick’s Day

Pot of GoldHoliday

Saint Patrick’s Day Conversation Questions

These are some conversation questions about Saint Patrick’s day

  1. When is St. Patrick’s Day?
  2. What do you know about St. Patrick’s Day?
  3. What color do you wear on St. Patrick’s Day?
  4. How do you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day?
  5. What drink is popular on St. Patrick’s Day?

Saint Patrick’s Day Listening Exercises

Watch this video so you can learn some more about Saint Patrick’s Day

Now that you have watched the video, take some time to answer these questions

  1. When is St.Patrick’s Day celebrated?
  2. What culture usually celebrates St. Patrick’s Day?
  3. Who were  St.Patrick’s parents?
  4. Why did he decided to leave Ireland?
  5. Why did he decide  to come back to ireland?
  6. What’s the main symbol of St. Patrick’s Day?
  7. What do people wear on March 17th?
  8. What do people eat on St. Patrick’s Day?
  9. What do people do in the USA to celebrate the St. Patrick’s Day?
  10. What other symbols are associated with St. Patrick’s Day?

Additional Resources

These are some additional resources that you might be interested in

  1. St. Patrick Day Worksheet
  2. Saint’s Patrick Day Lesson Plan

Manuel Campos, English Professor

Manuel Campos

I am Jose Manuel, English professor and creator of, a blog whose mission is to share lessons for those who want to learn and improve their English