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Do seasonal traditions stop us trying new things?

30th December 2022 - 06th January 2023

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Total votes


5-11 votes


11-16+ votes

A trip to Winter Wonderland. A wander through the Christmas Markets. Time spent watching the same old films. The sound of Big Ben and Auld Lang Syne at midnight. Games played with a ferocity reserved only for those closest to you. Perhaps some of these reflect things you have done since you can remember.

How many new things are ever worked into the rotation? Humans and change do not go together all that well. But there can be great benefits in trying new things and finding new experiences.

As students returned to schools following the winter break, our voters considered how inflexible the traditions attached to the winter and subsequent New Year holidays are. They explored the purpose of traditions, what they provide to society and their relationship to change. With this information, they decided whether traditions are important to keep or if they prevent us from having more varied experiences.

A primary aged pupil

Primary school

"We think that New Years is an important holiday. However, less important than religious celebrations."

A teenager

Secondary school

"Every year feels like a repeat of the year before and instead if new traditions were tried things would be different and exciting."

A teenager

Secondary school

"Just because we already have traditions doesn’t mean we can’t discover new ones!"

64% of 16+ voters said that it was important to keep seasonal traditions.

  • The majority of 16+ students felt positively about seasonal traditions and voted in favour of keeping them.
  • There are numerous seasonal traditions across different cultures, communities, religions and households.
18% of Secondary voters said that seasonal traditions can stop us from trying new things.

  • The majority of Secondary voters argued that seasonal traditions do not stop us from trying new things.
  • Some comments referenced New Year and how it is a tradition at the beginning of January to make a resolution, which often entails trying something new.
  • Equally, some students said that seasonal holidays usually involve seeing family and friends, where you can learn new things from those around you.
76% of Primary aged voters said that New Year was an important holiday to observe.

  • Primary pupils focused exclusively on New Year celebrations as part of their lessons.
  • The majority voted that New Year was an important holiday and the comments reflected this.
  • One pupil noted that whilst important, it is maybe less important than religious traditions happening around the same time.
Age 5-11: "Is New Year an important holiday?" 76% voted Yes and 24% voted No. Age 11-16: Do seasonal traditions stop us trying new things? 18% voted Yes and 82% voted No. 16+: Is it important to keep seasonal traditions? 64% voted Yes and 36% voted No.