We are lucky to be living in the most diverse city in the United States - Houston, TX! It's amazing how many parents say they love that they can use our suncatcher kits as a class activity when they do Diwali presentations. How awesome that schools engage their communities to do this now? Even at work, we have a Diwali luncheon and celebration!
Here are 5 ideas for fun activities if you're planning to do one for your little one's school or if you're a teacher! Of course, start off with an overview about Diwali, how your family celebrates it and the importance of traditions. We have a great Diwali infographic for kids to help you out!
Explain the religious significance to Hindus at a high level. Depending on the age group, it can be fun to talk about the stories (but they can be a bit scary when you think about it, so use your judgement!).
1) Paint a Diya!
Diyas (oil lamps / candles) are beautiful symbols of light and important to the Diwali tradition. While we of course are partial to our Diya themed suncatcher kits, you can also mold your own from clay and paint them! We use Crayola's Air Dry Clay (make sure you make it bigger than the tealight because it shrinks as it dries)!
2) Make Rangoli
Draw or paint rangoli designs! A fun, easy way to do this at school is with using sidewalk chalk! Parents or teachers can outline large designs with white chalk and the kiddos can spread around and color them! Simple rangoli design ideas on the infographic above.
3) Read a Book!
There are beautifully illustrated books about Diwali that help tell the story. Here are a few of our favorites!
Let's Celebrate Diwali by Anjali Joshi
Diwali (Celebrate the World) by Hannah Eliot
Amma Tell Me About Diwali by Bhakti Mathur
Twinkle Twinkle, Diwali Lights by Reena Puri & Mital Telhan
4) Dance it out!
Bollywood music has such a great beat to it! So easy for kids to dance to - check out You Tube dance tutorials (or the Just Dance Bollywood videos!). Bhangra is a great way to jump around and dance!
5) Don't forget the sweets and treats!
Go to your local Indian store or restaurant and pick out some colorful sweets and samosas to pass out! Be aware of allergies as many Indian sweets contain nuts!
Bonus: Host a classroom used toy drive and donate the toys to a local organization! Emphasize 'daan' and charity parts of the Diwali tradition.
Regardless of what activity you choose - make sure you tie it back to why it's an integral part of celebrating Diwali. For simplicity when I teach my son, I say we decorate the house with rangolis, diyas and do fireworks to invite God into our home.
Enjoy sharing the beautiful traditions of Diwali!