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Let's celebrate



Suitable for children: 
Four children in festive clothes

Many special things happen every day but some are so important that the whole family wants to celebrate. It might be the birth of a child, a birthday, a special cultural event, a new job, a change in seasons or winning an award.

Talk to your child about the special event and how you will celebrate it. Is it a traditional celebration with customs to follow and special food to cook? Can the family choose how to celebrate because it’s a one-off event?

If the celebration happens on the same day each year you can talk about the date as it gets closer. You could mark it on the calendar and record what jobs need to be done along the way.

The Harvest festival is coming up. We’ll need to cook different food to celebrate spring.

Maybe it’s a family celebration like a birthday or a name day. Talk to your child about how your family will celebrate their special day.

Harran will be three on Monday. He wants to have a party with his cousins and have a huge blue cake to share.

Materials you will need

  • Your family
Skills this activity improves
Why does this matter?

As you talk to your child and involve them in preparing for a celebration they are learning about planning and measurement. They are developing the language they need to talk about what they are doing.

Explore with your child when the event might happen or what tasks can be done at the same time. As you do this your child will be beginning to sort and group activities. They will be learning how to order when things happen based on time.

Hearing and listening to instructions and language that include quantity, number and measurement helps your child to learn to follow directions. It will help them develop the language they need to ask questions if they don’t know what to do.

What does this lead to?

As your child helps to organise a celebration they are exploring measurement and the different directions or language we use to describe measurement. They are exploring the measurement concepts of:

  • number - How many people will come to the party? How many days till the party?
  • size - How big a cake will we cook for 10 people to eat?
  • quantity - How much food will we need for 5 hungry people?
  • time - When is the party? What day, time or month will the party be?
Language to use
  • Celebration, party, event
  • Birthday, festival, season
  • Calendar, day, time, month, year
  • Food, singing, dancing
Questions to use
  • How many people are going to come to the party?
  • Do we need to make special food for the celebration?
  • Whose birthday is it? How old will they be?
  • What are we celebrating?
Useful tips
  1. You might also like to take a look at the activities A freckle here, some sprinkles there and New Year.
  2. Remember to talk to your child in your home language.
More ideas
  1. Google different cultural events to see what celebrations are coming up.
  2. Explore what other families celebrate.
Variation by age

Three to five year olds

  • Borrow books from your local library about celebrations.
  • Make your own storybook of celebrations.
  • Look in the local paper to see what local events are happening.
  • Make a calendar of significant family events.
  • Create a celebration cookbook. Make a different page for each family member. They can list their favourite food on the page.

Questions to ask

  • What is your favourite food?
  • What do you like to do on your birthday?

Language to use

  • Celebration, party, event
  • Birthday, festival, season
  • Calendar, day, time, month, year
  • Food, singing, dancing