What your kids need to know about Independence Day in the Philippines
Nothing can be more inspiring than teaching our kids about the heroism, valor, and sacrifice that our forefathers did in order to gain our freedom.
As we come to celebrate the Philippines' 119th year of independence, it's important for parents to teach their kids about the heroism and sacrifice that our forefathers did in order for us to have the freedom that we're experiencing right now.
Is it important to teach our kids about our country's history?
Our national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, famously said that "Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan, ay hindi makararating sa pinaroroonan," and that's very true. Knowing more about our past helps us understand our present better, and lets us prepare for the future.
Which is why teaching our kids about history, and inspiring them to be nationalistic is very important as they can develop a love for our country, and for their fellow Filipinos.
It also serves as inspiration for our children, so that they strive to someday make their own mark in our country's history.
Why do we celebrate our independence?
We celebrate our independence as it marks the end of more than 300 years of Spanish rule. During that time, Filipinos were treated as second-class citizens in their own country, and suffered a lot of injustice and cruelty at the hands of the Spaniards.
Which is our forefathers took it upon themselves to take back our country, and put an end to Spanish rule once and for all, even at the cost of their lives.
What should our kids know about Independence Day?
1. Our children should know about the sacrifices that our forefathers made just so we can be free.
During the Spanish rule, Filipinos had a hard time looking for work, buying property, and some were even treated as slaves. The inequality between the rich Spaniards and the poor Filipinos was so prominent, that most Filipinos didn't have a lot of rights. Some were even forced to work, with no wage, as a means of providing service for Spain.
Those are just a few reasons why our heroes fought so hard for our independence. They dreamt of a free Philippines, with Filipinos being able to make their own decisions about their country, and being the masters of their destiny.
2. June 12 wasn't originally celebrated as our independence day
Filipinos back then didn't originally celebrate our independence on June 12. Back then, it was on July 4, same as the United States. On May 12, 1962, President Diosdado Macapagal finally changed it to June 12.
3. Priests were the first ones who started to start the movement for our independence
You'll be surprised to know that Filipino priests were actually the ones who started talking to our nation's intellectuals in an attempt to declare our independence, because they disliked the fact that the Spanish were dominant in Filipino churches.
4. The declaration of Philippine Independence wasn't recognized by the US or Spain
Understandably, when the President of the Philippines at the time, Emilio Aguinaldo, declared our independence, the US and Spain didn't recognize it.
Spain and America were embroiled in the Spanish-American war at the time, and Spain sold the Philippines to the United States during the Treaty of Paris.
5. The Philippine flag is used as both a symbol of peace, and of war
During times of war, the Philippine flag is displayed with the red portion of the flag above the blue, to signify war. However, during times of peace, the blue portion is displayed above the red.
There are also food celebrations of our independence
This coming Independence Day, some hotels and restaurants will also be offering some nationalistic food festivals to commemorate our independence.
Kanyaman Filipino Food Festival
Celebrity chef Sau del Rosario will be taking the lead in Novotel's Kanyaman Filipino Food Festival, which is ongoing until June 22.
Featured are native Pampanga dishes with chef Sau's signature touch, such as Foie Gras Sisig, Crispy Lechon Belly with Chocolate and Cheese stuffing, and even a brick oven-baked Longganisa Pizza.
The food festival is ongoing until June 22. The buffet rate is 1,200 on weekdays, and 1,600 on weekends.
Philippine Archipelago Food Festival
Chef Myke "Tatung" Sarthou will be at the helm of the Philippine Archipelago Food Festival that will be held in Corniche, in the Diamond Hotel, Manila.
Chef Tatung shares, "The idea is to showcase the different regions around the country through their dishes, I don’t think there’s really a ‘national Filipino cuisine’ because there’s so much to discover all around the Philippines."
Indeed, the entire Archipelago has a lot of amazing cuisine on offer! The Philippine Archipelago Food Festival is ongoing until June 12, 2017. The rates are 2380 pesos per person, kindly call +63 2 5283000 local 1121 for reservations.
Vegan Filipino Food Festival
For those who're interested in healthier fare, or for vegans, you can visit the Vegan Filipino Food Festival in Marriott Cafe, Marriott Hotel Manila, Resorts Drive, Pasay.
They're offering vegan versions of traditional fare, such as Bicol Express, Sisig, and Bacolod Inasal.
Their vegan feast will be available until June 30, buffet rates are 2500 pesos from Saturday-Friday, and 2100 pesos on Sunday-Thursday.
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