Is Black Friday Taking over Thanksgiving?

Some Americans are more interested in shopping than eating turkey.

Consumerism LessonBlack Friday is now being called Black Friday weekend. It refers to the weekend following American Thanksgiving when millions of people flock to the shopping malls and stores. Black Friday shoppers are looking for bargains and deals as they begin their Christmas shopping. Did you know that some people skip Thanksgiving altogether and camp out in front of large box stores? Some stores are planning on opening on Thursday night to extend the long shopping weekend. In fact, according to some shoppers, Black Friday lineups have turned into a social event and a “tradition”. Are you looking for something to talk about in class today? Check out this CNN article and video¬†Black Friday: Stores could see record number of shoppers.

Here are a few questions to get your students talking after reading the article:

  • Why do you think shopping on Black Friday is expected to rise by 10% from last year?
  • Do you think stores should open on Thanksgiving night?
  • What are “box stores”?
  • Why does the article mention Occupy protestors?
  • What does “hard-core” mean?
  • What is Cyber Monday?
  • Where do you think the term “Black Friday” came from? Take a guess!

“I’ve been doing this with my friends for about 10 years,” Casillas said. “Black Friday has become more of a tradition than Thanksgiving.”
Joe Casillas to CNN

Does this comment surprise you? What does it say about humanity?

Homework (or mobile device) Assignment: Research the term “Black Friday”. What are the origins? Is it still an appropriate term for this day?

Our Discussion Starters section features a full-length lesson on Consumerism. If your students are interested in discussing this issue, be sure to print out this lesson.

Related Lessons in the ESL-Library

Boxing Day
Chain Stores vs Mom and Pop
The Occupy Movement
Online Shopping
Thanksgiving Lessons
Thanksgiving Flashcards

While our Something to Talk About suggestions are useful for getting your students involved in a group or pair discussion or debate, the topics, articles, and videos can also be used if you are looking for something for your students to blog/Skype/or write an opinion essay about.

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