For many parents, our source of pride and joy is reflected in the success of our children—their baby steps, that first home run, the lead part in a school play, graduation. These achievements are often measured by peers as a direct result of our roles as responsible caretakers.
But the milestones are superficial. How do we actually know that a child is self-fulfilled, happy and healthy? That our sons and daughters have been given a fair shot at life to learn and grow and be ready for the next chapter in their lives?
Because our children are our future, it’s critical we ensure not only an intellectual and physical readiness for them, but see that they’re mentally and emotionally prepared to tackle what things may come in a world that can be difficult to navigate.
Children’s Day, also known as Day of the Child, is celebrated each year on the birthday of Jawaharlal Nehru, as a tribute to the first prime minister of India. When he was alive Nehru advocated for appropriate rights, care and education of behalf of children in his country as an independent activist and political leader.
He believed that advocating for freedom and equity across social, economical and spiritual platforms gives children the best possible chance at success when evolving into mature adults and ultimately contributing to society.
In the United States Children’s Day is typically celebrated the second Sunday in June. It was first officially declared a national holiday in 1920. Internationally, World Children’s Day is celebrated Nov. 20, the day the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Declaration and Convention on children’s rights—international agreements on childhood.
As parents, educators, coaches, doctors, counselors and in countless other roles, we have a duty to fulfill each child’s potential through equal access to education and a safe and inclusive environment so they thrive instead of struggle.
Children are inspiring in that they’re naturally fearless, unconditionally loving, adventurous and ambitious. As role models let’s nurture those characteristics to the best of our ability and learn from their innocence and altruism.
As you spend time with your children today, recognize the power these little humans possess to change the world for the better and encourage them to leave it better than when they entered it.
Ways to celebrate Children’s Day together:
Enjoy the outdoors
*Plan a scavenger hunt (create a treasure map and choose items to scatter throughout your home, backyard or neighborhood)
*Have a picnic in the park or your backyard (pack your favorite items and enjoy them together)
*Choreograph a dance party along to your favorite Disney tunes
*Go camping (set up a fort in your backyard, go to a campsite or rough it in the great outdoors—don’t forget the Smore’s!)
*Veg out on the couch with your family and enjoy an all-day movie marathon (build a fort or otherwise get cozy with blankets and of course your favorite cinematic snacks!)
*Go to the grocery store and get special ingredients for the creation of a personal pizza or bake a special treat together
*Play board games (Monopoly, Scrabble, Uno and Twister are some of my favs!) Another go-to in my house is hide-and-seek
Paper plate masks –
What you’ll need: paper plates, markers, pencil, crayons or paint, decorative materials like glitter, glue, yarn or ribbon and stickers
A flying rocket –
What you’ll need: paper towel tubes, paint and paintbrushes, construction paper, aluminum foil, tape and glue, scissors, clothes pegs, mesh bag
Sponge sailboat –
What you’ll need: construction paper, craft sticks or long toothpicks, paint and paintbrushes, multi-colored sponges, scissors
Gift ideas that celebrate the Day of the Child rather than just the child:
*piggy bank (teaches them financial responsibility)
*books (help them read and learn about a new subject)
*STEAM activity (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art or Math projects engage them in an academic, but fun way)