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The Orange & Green

The Orange & Green

What is a Leap Year?


Have you ever wondered why we have an extra day every four years? This is because we need to keep our Calendar aligned with the Earth’s orbit around the sun. If a leap year were nonexistent, then our seasons would drift, and what we know as our June summers wouldn’t start until December! It is common knowledge that leap years happen every four years, but that is not necessarily true. According to The Science of a Leap Year, by Brady Craddock, adding a leap day every four years makes the Calendar longer by over 44 minutes. Over time, these extra 44+ minutes would also cause the seasons to drift in our Calendar. For this reason, not every four years is a leap year. 

The term “Leap Year” comes from the fact that we are “leaping” a day over in the Calendar. So, if your birthday falls on a Monday one year, adding the extra day should land on a Tuesday the following year. The concept of a leap year dates back to ancient civilizations such as the Romans and Egyptians, who were the ones to notice that the Calendar didn’t match up with the Earth’s orbit. Therefore, coming up with the idea to add an extra day every few years to help balance it out.

Leap Day comes with many traditions; for example, it is well known that people have Leap Day parties to celebrate the extra day and have the opportunity to enjoy this day with friends and have fun. There is a common superstition where people believe that leap years bring bad luck or are generally bad days to make significant life decisions. Still, some people believe the complete opposite and believe that this extra day brings luck and good fortune. This day is also used to challenge traditional gender roles, and women propose to their partners. So embrace this extra day and do something fun with friends or family!

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About the Contributor
Vanessa Hernandez
Vanessa Hernandez, Reporter
Vanessa is a senior and is involved in the Academy of Health Sciences. She’s a first-year staff member of The Orange & Green. She enjoys reading in her free time or listening to music. Vanessa is also involved in many clubs on campus; she enjoys trying new things to challenge herself. Vanessa is also a participant in Link Crew here at Porterville High. 

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