May is the first full month of Spring, and is full of sunshine and flowers and birds. It is also host to five events that can make for a lot of fun for your kids! Here are five things to mark on your calendars to inspire and create a play-based focus all month long!
May 2nd – School Lunch Hero Day.
I always discuss that kindness and empathy are learned behaviors that must be practiced and taught. Honoring the workers in your child’s school is a simple and meaningful way to demonstrate appreciation for a job that often goes unnoticed. Make a thank you card together as a family, and talk about why it is important to express gratitude. Use cut pieces from milk cartons or juice boxes to decorate the card.
May 4th – Star Wars Day.
Truth be told, I have never even watched Star Wars. However, kids love the costumes, the characters, and the voices that are so well-known and loved from this movie series. Throw a party for your kids. Invite the neighbors. Costumes are encouraged. Include lightsaber party favors made from pool noodles and duct tape. Serve Jabba the Pizza Hut slices and make some Wookie Cookies. Find all of the details here: http://prettyprovidence.com/star-wars-themed-party/
May 12th – 18th – Children’s Book Week.
Instilling a love of reading begins early and there are so many fun books out there to read together. Spend a few minutes each night of this week reading a book together with each of your children. Let them choose which book they would like. Then on the weekend, read some together as a family. Some of my favorites that focus on playing: “Mattland,” by Hazel Hutchins and Gail Herbert, “Max’s Dragon,” by Kate Banks, and “I’m A Tiger, Too!” by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick.
May 19th – 26th – National Backyard Games Week.
There are so many great memories to be made in a backyard! Bug hunting, bird watching, capturing the flag, throwing balls, or swinging all hold such amazing power for happy playtime for kids. Set up an obstacle course that the entire family must complete as a team to win. Make pool noodle wickets for a a family croquet match. Make a baseball diamond and cheer each other on as you run the bases. Family fun created in your own yard is priceless!
May 25th – National Tap Dance Day.
There is really not much more fun than dancing children. Many Funniest Home Videos attest that watching kids show off their moves is not only fun, but worth joining in on. Organize a dance talent show for your kids and their friends. There are no winners, but the zanier the better. Choose favorite music and create choreography and learn it together. Take turns with who is coming up with the moves. If you and your children need tap shoes, use a strong adhesive or rubber cement to attach metal washers to the heel and toe of shoes that are getting too small for some tap dancing flair.
Above all, this May make it a priority to spend meaningful and purposed time playing and having fun together as a family. It not only is good for your kids, but it reminds us that we should never be too old to outgrow our childlike love of playing and having fun.