Festivities and Holidays Printables
The last few years since I had my twins (a week short of 5 now!) , we celebrate, decorate and indulge in festivities year round. My fire place mantle is the showcase of the theme of the house, and this time I have a Valentine village with crafts and cards and just so much love and all exclusively created by the kids. I am sharing a few images in this post - and I would love to see your lovelies and their creations too! Please post them in the comments.
I want to highlight some of the valentine themed activities that kids have participated throughout the week, but before that lets just learn some of the buzz words and their history with the Valentine's day celebration.
Valentine - Saint Valentines secretly married young boys and girls and was sentenced to death. There was a law in the roman empire for boys to not become husbands so they could be better soldiers. Feb 14 was set as a day to celebrate Saint Valentine's Day. The feast day’s earliest associations with love may have been inherited from the ancient Romans festival celebrated between Feb. 13 and Feb. 15 where a matchmaking lottery would pair men and women up during the festival.
Cupid - In Roman mythology, Cupid is the son of Venus, the goddess of love who fell in love with Psyche against his mothers wishes. Cupid married Psyche on the condition that she should never look at him and he would visit her only in the night. One night inspite of this condition, she lit a lamp so she could see him and hence Cupid left her. Psyche approached Venus who gave her a task to deliver a box, but not open it. But again, she opened the box and fell lifeless on the ground. Cupid, who really loved Psyche forgave her and got her back and the gods then made Psyche a goddess.
Color Red-The color red is known to make our blood pressure rise, as well as our heart and respiration rate. That’s why red is the color of Valentine’s Day. There is also research that this color heightens attraction towards mates (human and animals).
Flowers- The history of giving flowers to loved ones comes from the old-fashioned custom of non-verbal messages. In 18th century Sweden, each flower had a specific meaning attached to it, making it possible to have an entire conversation using only flowers.
Candies/Chocolates - Valentine’s Day blossomed as an increasingly popular late winter-early spring holiday. Richard Cadbury, manufactured chocolate and came up with “eating chocolates”. He designed lovely boxes and packaged the chocolates. In 1861, Cadbury began putting the Cupids and rosebuds on heart-shaped boxes, even when the chocolates had been eaten, people could use the beautiful boxes to save such mementos as love letters.
**Each of this Valentine-isms have a few other iterations. In this post, I have covered some of the popular historical linkages. This information is gathered from multiple sources/websites/magazines.
Now to the some of the Featured activities my kids have participated -
1. Passing the Heart (class of Teacher Verna Rego) - 20 kids in the class - each one had to label their heart shaped card, and they played passing the heart. The kids wrote a message, and when the teacher said shuffle the kids passed the card to the next person .. at the end 20 unique and beautiful messages in each kids card.
2. Oceans of Love themed - very simple Heart shaped Fishes (class of Teacher Sumeeti) - 3 heart sizes , glued together as a Fish (Body, Tail and Fin) and the card said Oceans of Love/Fun this Valentines Day
3. Love Lanterns - Dollar Store plastic jar converted to a beautiful DIY love lantern. A small battery operated led light glued to the lid, and the kids colored the jar with chalk markers, paints and glitter.
4. Love Mail Box (class of Teacher Verna Rego) - each kid was given an old tissue box, and they had to post a valentine greeting to the rest of the friends in their class - super simple but cherished by kids.
5. Heart Dollie Owl
6. Making Cards for Occassions - always a hit with kids!
And we bring it all together , and decorate our Fireplace Mantle with kids diy for occassions and festivities year-round!
Here's wishing a year full of love and learning to all members of the Vitamin Simple Club ❤️
“We owe a lot to the Indians, who taught us how to count, without which no worthwhile scientific discovery could have been made." - Albert Einstein. India has a lot to celebrate both ancient India and India now. India is truly incredible. As India celebrates 71st Independence Day on August 15, 2017. I want to dedicate this Vitamin Simple Unbox theme to Celebrating India!
Download these simple yet inspiring coloring and crafts templates and involve your kids to celebrate India.
Activity 1: Make My India – Clean, Green and United
Involve your kids to Make My India - Clean, Green and United!
• Clean India – coloring activity There is trash on the streets, paan stains on the wall, paper lying around…Kids pick up your paint brush and color India orange and clean!
Join the Clean India Campaign
• Green India – Crafts, cut and paste activity Kids cut and paste pots and plants and place on the India Map and make a Green India.
• United India – Puzzle, cut and paste activity Cut and paste the 4 pieces of India puzzle and create a united India
Join the United India Campaign
Activity 2: Setup India Day Fair
This independence day get your kids proud of the Indian heritage and make them participate in a popular India crafts show case. Hands on experience of an India Day fair setup for young ones with this simple activity package.
Download the free cutout templates, print them on A4 size paper. Cutout the parts of the India day fair setup and paste them on a big poster board/chart paper and create a beautiful India Day Fair showcasing some of India’s well known arts and crafts... Celebrate India, feel proud and experience as your kids and you indulge with this simple crafts package
Images of the Cutout templates
Activity 3: India Freedom Train
Hop on the India Freedom Train and ride through the Freedom Struggle journey, highlighting some important milestones in the India Freedom Struggle.
Download the printables (4 quadrants) and print on A4 size paper and stick them side by side on a reusable cardboard or poster board. Encourage kids to ride their cars or trains and learn the Freedom Struggle Milestones as they stop on each station.
Images of the 4 quadrant templates
Activity 4: Tricolor
Some Tricolor Activities that you can engage with your kids.
Do and Dye Carnation or Daisy Flowers in Tricolors Guide:
1. Carnations , cut the stem about 1.5 inches and place them in 3 glasses/vases
2. Put Orange food color in Glass 1 and put Green food color in Glass 3 Tip: the flowers will soak warm water faster than cool water
3. Observe every few hours as the flowers absorb the color
Also, there are Tricolor printables in the package – here are the images of the printables
Flag Coloring and Facts Printable: India Map Stencil to color with the tricolors:
India Q-Tips Stencil:
Activity 5: Some Important Peoplein the Indian History
Learn some important figures in Indian freedom struggle and the Prime Ministers of India.
MAKE FREEDOM FIGHTER POPSICLE VASES
Use the free printables and cutout the freedom fighter images and staple or stick them to Popsicle sticks, and also label the sticks with their names. You can make vases sorting them by gender or arrange as you like, these make great center pieces and decorations to celebrate India’s independence.
Materials Needed: Popsicle sticks, glue or stapler, any play containers/bowls/pots,
Playdough or mud or anything that can hold the sticks and download the Freedom Fighters Cutout and print on A4 size paper.
Sample India’s Freedom Fighters Popsicle vase: (using playdough as the holding agent)
PRIME MINISTERS OF INDIA MAT
Learn the Prime Ministers of India from independence to now and a fun worksheet to play along. Also print the Prime Ministers of India Mat two times and play a matching game.
Prime Minister of India Mat:
Prime Ministers of India Worksheet:
Printables Package Activity Index
1. Lifecycle of a Pumpkin - Minibook creation
2. Sunligh Poke -a- Pumpkin Template
3. Emotions Pumpkin Patch
4. Pumpkin Maze
5. Pumpkin Mandala Art
6. Spelling Boo
7. Halloween Snapchat
Why is Halloween Celebrated?
***All Hallow's eve - Halloween***
At our home, we are gearing up for a fun Halloween night and Trick or Treat with the kids. We have the costumes ready and kids are excited. Pumpkins are everywhere. I will soon launch free printables, activities and more stories about different Halloween traditions which you can enjoy with your little ones.
As a part of the Halloween series, here is a summarized write-up about the origin of Halloween.
Hallow means a holy or a saint person. An "All Saints Day" is celebrated on November 1st and is known as Hallowmas. All Saint's Day is a day dedicated to those who have died and now live with God in heaven. It is believed that Christian practice of celebrating the evening before a holiday, such as Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve, etc. came from the Jewish traditions. Judaism follows a lunar calendar in which the sunsets begin the new day. So the celebration for Saints day begins on October 31st evening as "All Hallows eve"(or All Saints eve) now popularly known as Halloween.
Halloween origin traces back from the ancient Celtics religions. The Brits, Irish, Scottish and Welsh are descendants of this ancient Celtics tribe. They believed that all spirits before leaving the earth got one chance to have a vengeance with their enemy on the Halloween night. People disguise themselves so the spirits cannot identify them and so cannot cast evil tricks. Also outside their house people left "soul cakes" as treats to make these spirits happy. This started the tradition of Trick or Treat and Halloween disguise. This was further extended as the popularity spread across the world and in some countries it was adapted as the Mischief night where people could play prank on the others. Over time the custom of adults dressing up as demons changed and the children took over. They would knock at each house and say “trick or treat”. People would then give the children apples or bread and now candy to keep from being tricked.
Note: There are small variations in different versions about Halloween origin - in my write-up I present only one view, so you may hear a few other stories as well!
India Republic Day - Free Learning Printables
Learn about Republic day and its signficance, about the India Flag, about the Armed forces and more with this fun and learn printable package.
Free India Republic Day Printables - Trailor
Printables Activity Index
India Independence Day vs. India Republic Day
Both Republic Day and Independence Day are widely celebrated and significant holidays in India.
What is the difference between these two days?
India won independence from the British on Aug 15th, 1947 but continued under the British constitution for 3 more years and governed by a Governor General appointed by the British Monarch.
On Jan 26th, 1950 the Indian Constitution was established and the first state of head Dr. Rajendra Prasad was appointed as the President of India. Jan 26th the day of our constitution was made to coincide with the day in 1930 when the Congress Party of India declared Purna Swaraj or complete independence.
Independence Day activities are honored by the Prime Minister of India
Republic Day activities are honored by the President of India
Independence Day celebrates the birth of the nation and the sacrifices made by the Freedom Fighters
Republic Day celebrates the constitution/government as the strength of India and Indian forces.
Independence Day celebrates the momentous past
Republic Day celebrates the present and future state.
All About Holi
A fun learning Holi activity package and probe into the festival and how the different traditions came into being - Color throw? Balloons and Pichkaris(water guns)? Holi Bonfire? Holi across India - unity in diversity!
There are some tradition/religion based theories and some science related. In all Hindu religious practices you will find how the festivals always have some good science and reasoning as a part of the tradition - gradually we have lost the essence of how science was married into religion. Most of of the intended benefits cease to exist today - but its great to learn the intent and origin of our rich heritage of festivals and in some way if we can keep them alive.
Color Theories - Why Holi became the festival of colors ? There are many theories, here is a compilation. Based on these theories, please see the attached activities package.
Radha - Krishna - equalizer
Krishna means black/dark. As a child he always complained about his skin color and compared himself to the fair-skinned Radha. Yashoda, his mom tried several ways to explain how colors don't matter - and after failed attempts, she playfully suggested to Krishna that he can change Radhas complexion by smearing any color of his choice on her face. Fascninated and mischievous Krishna is thus believed to have started this tradition. This helped Krishna to understand that its just a "mere skin color" and its just that!
Medicinal Plant and Herb Powder - natural medicine
Holi starts a new season - spring and brings allergies. Viral, flu and other illnesses are widespread as seasons change.In the ancient days, people applied powders of plants and herbs during seasonal changes which kept these diseases at bay. Unfortunately, now the synthetic and artificial powders have captured the market and the original scientific intent has been lost.
The remains/ashes - Vibhuti
A Holi bonfire was lit by villagers and the ash of the burnt-out fire was applied to the forehead by elders the next morning. Colors soon replaced ash. (More about Holi bonfire in the next post!) Activity: Vibhuti-the sacred ashes - three lines
Traditionally, there are 5 colors used in Holi celebrations. Colors are also known as abeer or gulaal.
Color Red :love and passion
Color Yellow: happiness and healing
Color Blue: serenity
Color Green: new beginnings
Color Pink: femininity and joy.
The Good, the Bad and the kingdom of opposites
A one page Moral science story about Holi for the kids - The Good, the Bad and the kingdom of opposites
Holi and Colors Fun Play Ideas for kids
With holi around the corner if you are planning holi and colors fun for kids , take a look at some fun ideas we had at my 5 year old twins holi/colors themed party.
With spray bottles, nail paint station , face and body crayons for self face painting, water balloons, roll a ball of paint, wheel of paint (cars and bikes painting), Finger painting , markers , crayons and lots and lots of colors as kids ramp walked and shake a leg on paint (washable tempera colors and finger paints)