Children’s day is recognized on many different dates throughout the world. In Korea, people annually celebrate Children’s Day on May 5th. During the holiday, people, especially parents, celebrate the day by giving children gifts or taking them to different venues of children entertainment.
Although Children’s Day may seem like a less serious holiday compared to the others, it actually has a deep history in Korea. The idea of Children’s Day first arose in 1923 by a children’s writer named Bang Jung Hwan. He found the holiday as a way to provide independence and national pride to the children. Moreover, it was intended to emphasize the need for love, care, and respect towards children as well as to respect and honor the parents. Not only did Bang Jung Hwan went around Korea with the hope to deliver the message, but also he translated and wrote many children's books and stories that are still read by many of the children today.
Children’s Day was originally chosen to be on May 1st, but since it was on the same day as Labor Day, it was moved to May 5th. It became an official public holiday on the 1970s and since then, people have enjoyed an exciting day off from their work to spend time with their children.
As mentioned, since parents are usually too busy to spend enough time with their children, they tend to put extra effort into doing something special on the holiday. They take the children to the amusement parks, zoos, movie theaters, and museums to make pleasant memory in their childhoods. Some of the adults even give gifts such as toys or allowance money, so that children can enjoy the event even more.
Not only does Children’s Day give joy to people’s childhood memories, but also it allows people to directly experience coming of age. As people grow up and become adults, they have to accept the fact that Children’s Day is not for them anymore; they will not receive gifts or any chance to go to an exciting trip. They have to begin learning how to give and celebrate the new generation.
Interestingly, North Korea also does celebrate Children’s Day, but it is on a different date; it is annually celebrated on June 1st.