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Russia's Knowledge Day

31. August 2010 by Christy 0 Comments

Observed on the first of September, Knowledge Day is a time when students and parents bid the summer holidays goodbye and welcome the beginning of autumn and the start of a new school year.

On the Day of Knowledge, the traditional first day of school in Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union, schools hold public welcoming assemblies for students and their families. It’s traditional for many students to wear their best clothing and to present their teacher with a large bouquet of flowers. Last year, President President Dmitry Medvedev delivered a message of peace and tolerance via his video blog. September 1st is also a day of remembrance for the 2004 Beslan school hostage crisis.

Knowledge Day is especially significant for first graders who are starting school for the first time. In the tradition of the First Bell, a male 12th grader hoists a first grade girl onto his shoulders and parades her around the school yard as she rings the first bell of the year. Parents and family members watch the spectacle, clapping and cheering and shouting encouragement to first grade students.

Enjoy these photos of Knowledge Day celebrations and traditions!