Carnaval is the biggest festival in the world! It is famous for its Samba dancing competitions, the creative and detailed costumes that people wear, and all of the fun parties that go one for a whole week. During the week of Carnaval, all businesses and schools close, and everyone spends the week celebrating. There are also special Carnaval parties for kids called bloquinhos

What tradition did I learn about?:

I learned about Carnival shortly after arriving in Brazil. My daughter's school spent a week learning the history of Carnival and then had their own Carnival party. For their party, all of the kids dressed up in costumes and they threw confetti and ribbon all over the school.

There is a saying "the year doesn’t start in Brazil until after Carnaval" and to me that seemed to be true. In Brazil, summer break ends at the end of January. People usually take vacation for summer break and go back to work and begin school the last week of January. At my work, however, they said we should not go back until after Carnaval because there is no reason to work for a week just to take the next week off!

Why does the community have this tradition?:

Carnaval was originally a food festival where Catholic people ate a lot before the start of their religious season called Lent.