Kwanzaa is a weeklong celebration observed from December 26th to January 1st each year. It was first celebrated in 1966 and held to honor African American heritage. The original goal of the holiday was to provide African Americans an alternative to Christmas and to celebrate themselves and to reconnect with their culture and heritage.

However, it was later recognized that Christmas is an important celebration with many African American families and is often celebrated along with Kwanzaa.

There are seven days of Kwanzaa and each day is meant to be dedicated to one of the seven principles of the culture. They include:

  • Umoja (Unity)
  • Kujichagulia (Self-Determination)
  • Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility)
  • Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics)
  • Nia (Purpose)
  • Kuumba (Creativity)
  • Imani (Faith)

Teaching the Holiday of Kwanzaa to Your Young Students

It's easy to focus on Christmas during the holiday season. However, it is also a great time to learn about other cultures, traditions and religions. Kwanzaa is the perfect holiday to learn about in the classroom because it offers the opportunity to learn about and celebrate a culture. The holiday's seven principles are also good principles to learn and discuss in the classroom. Teacher Planet has all the Kwanzaa classroom resources you need to bring this holiday to your students.