Sitting in the comfort of our homes, it's very difficult to explain to our children what Republic Day means to India. There a few things though, which can help spark your child's interest in the topic allowing him to ask or discover more about it.
Dress in Traditional wear and go for Flag Hoisting
Dress in traditional wear or in combination of the saffron, white and green and attend a flag hoisting ceremony with your child. For younger kids, this is the time to teach them how to conduct themselves at the time of flag hoisting and show respect to the flag. Singing the national anthem together definitely infuses the right spirit in every child.
Plan a story telling session
Read out stories about the significance of the day or any stories of patriotic genre. We, the Children of India, written by Leila Seth would be an awesome read. You may also read patriotic stories from Amar Chitra Katha series. An interactive exchange of ideas and conversation after the reading session, helps take it further.
Have a Crafty Republic day
Pre-schoolers usually have a lot of fun making a crafty flag or a flag collage. You can use clay or ice cream sticks to make a flag. For very young kids, you can print coloring pages from the internet and let them color the picture of a map or a flag. These can be group activities too. Let the little ones' imaginations soar and let them make what they want.
Spend an afternoon playing board games
Get a jigsaw puzzle map of India and spend good time telling your child about different states while he fits it up. Chess and Snakes and Ladders too were both invented in India, which are good to play with your kids on this special day.
Visit a national monument
Take your kids out for the day. Visit a national monument like India gate in Delhi, Gateway of India in Mumbai etc. Many of these monuments have special lighting for Republic day. On the way to the monument, you can sing patriotic songs aloud. It would make the journey even more enjoyable.
Have a patriotic theme breakfast or lunch
Make tri-coloured sandwiches for breakfast with cucumber and tomatoes and a dash of imagination. Serve the idli like the tri-colour on the tray. Gun powder coating for the saffron and chutney coated for the green, exciting beginning to a national holiday. Tri colour dhokla is good fun too. For lunch tri coloured pulao or biryani at the lunch table. With carrots and peas available at the market, shouldn't be difficult. To make it more fun, organize a pot luck with your friends around the same theme.
Have a Republic Day party
Organize a Republic day party at home. Decorate the party area with the flag colours. Have theme-coloured food. For entertainment, organize a Republic Day quiz. Have awards for children under different categories like most courteous, most helpful, best team player etc. Sing patriotic songs. Adults can also share their childhood memories about how they spent republic day. If you have grandparents around to share their memories, it is an icing on the cake.
Do share these ideas with your friends too and let me know what ideas you used and how did it go.
Happy Republic Day!