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Holiday Songs and Stories That Celebrate Global Light

Hunk-Ta-Bunk-Ta…wait, what?! That’s a fun saying, but what does it mean?

We were curious about this phrase from the moment we saw Katherine Dines’ Holidays CD. And come to find out, the meaning behind the saying is just as fun as the stories and songs she shares in her new album for children and families.

Hunk Ta Bunk Ta

As a young girl, Katherine participated in a family tradition of Sunday lunch at her Granny’s house. Every Sunday, her Granny made biscuits, potatoes, and fried chicken for the whole family to enjoy. When her yummy lunch was ready, Granny would holler out to the kids, “KICK-ta-bill-icky/ALL-uh-guh-LOCK-sta/HUNK-TA-BUNK-TA Boo. Yooooo-Hooooo!”

Granny’s signature holler has been passed down in Katherine’s family for at least 200 years. And to this day, no one really knows what it means or where it came from. But for Katherine, this special saying lives on through her, her music, and her band.

Holidays CD

Disclosure: We received a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes; however, all opinions are our own.

Katherine Dines is an award-winning and Grammy-nominated family music artist based in Denver, Colorado. She’s an international performer and an advocate for literacy, the arts, and education.

Her newest Hunk-Ta-Bunk-Ta album is a collection of 13 songs, including some interesting stories and facts, about global holidays and the one thing they have in common: the element of light.

Holidays: Songs and Stories That Celebrate Global Light

With a focus on songs and stories that represent global light, this CD celebrates some of the brightest holidays from around the world including Diwali, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Ramadan.

Global Music for the Holidays

Through story and song, children and adults learn about the origin and meaning behind some of the world’s most celebrated and loved holidays. With light being a central element to these holidays, we learn why lanterns, candles, fire, and sunshine are used to celebrate light, in the presence of darkness.

Teaching children about holidays is a great way to incorporate diversity into the classroom and home. When children learn the meaning behind celebrations around the world, they gain an understanding and appreciation for holidays that are different from their own. They are able to discover commonalities and show respect for diverse traditions, faiths, and families.

Hunka-Ta-Bunk-Ta Holidays: Songs and Stories That Celebrate Global Light is a fun way to introduce holidays to our youngest global citizens.

Visit Hunk-Ta-Bunk-Ta for more information, music purchases, and concert bookings.


✬ Listen to the CD on SoundCloud.

✬ Visit our Calendar to stay up to date on global holidays and celebrations. Find out when the holidays described in the album are celebrated, and listen/learn the stories and songs from the CD to enhance student learning.

✬ Browse our Pinterest boards for related activities, crafts, projects, and books.

Holidays Around the World Diwali Hanukkah

Christmas Around the World Chinese New Year

✬ Go further, and explore the countries where many of these holidays are celebrated with our Country Research Projects. (20 countries available!)

✬ Use the quotes below to discuss what global light means and why light is important and valuable. Ask students if they think light is more powerful than darkness and to explain why or why not.

Global Light Quotes

“The most precious light is the one that visits you in your darkest hour!” -Mehmet Murat Ildan

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.” -Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” -Aristotle

“Light will someday split you open even if your life is now a cage.  Little by little, you will turn into stars.  Little by little, you will turn into the whole sweet amorous universe.” -Hafiz Shamseddin Mohammad

“All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.” -Francis of Assisi

Enjoy this fun music video from Katherine Dines: All the Way Around the World. Get ready to sing along!