The most popular festival in India is Diwali or Deepavali – the festival of lights. Kids are usually the most excited about this festival and look forward to celebrating this one with their friends and family – wearing traditional attire, gorging on their favourite sweets, enjoying fireworks, decorating their homes and above all exchanging gifts. A look around the city and you will notice all the shops (big and small) flooded with earthenware, pooja items, rangoli colours and all kinds of decorative stuff. The colorful Rangolis adorn most homes. Diyas and lights illuminate every nook and corner. A mesmerizing sight for sure!
Diwali provides a great opportunity for spending time together. The essential ingredients of any Diwali celebration include lighting diyas, colorful rangoli, fireworks, Lakshmi pooja, delicious food and getting together with the family. But with all the chores and things to be done, kids can feel left out. How about involving them in the festivities so they are not just engaged, but also learn about the festival and participate whole-heartedly!
Here are a few ideas that will surely make Diwali even more sparkly and fun for kids. Go on and make Diwali a fun family celebration.
Make Diwali even more sparkly and fun for kids
Light ’em up – Make Diyas, Candles, and Lanterns
The word ‘Deepavali’ means the row of lights. Nothing can match the charm of traditional clay diyas. You can buy them and use them or you can even make your own diya with clay or air-dry clay! If your child finds the traditional Diyas too boring, it is time to transform the clay pieces into flashy and colorful Diyas. Feel free to add glitz with bling and glitter to make it even more exciting. Learn how to decorate your own Diya stand with the waste lying at home
After you are done with the diyas, how about making a lantern? Use paper, tins, mason jars, bangles and anything you can think of using and transform them into lanterns and candle holders.
Color it up – Make Rangoli
Diwali is not just the festival of lights, but also of colors. Colourful rangoli on the floor has its own grace. Try out rangolis with different materials other than the regular rangoli powder. Experiment with flowers, grains, pulses, play-doh or more! You can use cardboard or wooden shape boards. Paint them, embellish with colourful stones, mirrors & Kundan. Try plastic shapes too to make the permanent rangoli. Make use of the waste item at your home & come out with an amazing artwork. Only limited by your imagination!
Say welcome – Make a toran
Engage the children in making these torans! Go natural with leaves and flowers like in this video below or choose to upcycle!
Decorate the House
Add some light and colour to your homes this Diwali! Involve your child in making rangolis, making torans and decorating the house. Why not get creative and make rangoli with different materials like flowers, rhinestones, grains and different coloured pulses (dal) to brighten up the entrance of your house. Add a bowl of water and light up diyas for that mesmerizing ambiance!
Make Yummy Sweets
No festivity can be complete without sweets. And Diwali is synonymous sweets! Whether traditional kheer, halwa, laddus, chocolates, cupcakes or cookies, kids will love the cook and bake session the most. Let them assist you in little things like mixing, serving and plating the dishes. Check out these Fruity, Yummy dishes that kids will love!
Do not forget to enjoy a serene storytelling session with stories of Ramayana, Lord Krishna, and Narkasura to help your child understand the history, culture, and traditions of Diwali better. Organize a quiz or a crossword puzzle with questions related to the history of the festival in different parts of India to make it fun.
Keep a track on your budget. Do not spend much on expensive gifts. Instead, make simple gifts like chocolates, candles, torans, and hand painted Diya sets at home. Hand-made gifts are simply the best and priceless. Greetings and messages are an integral part of Diwali. Help your kids in making wonderful greeting cards and message cards for their friends. Use colorful papers, paints, glitter pens and more to stick onto the gifts or wrap along with the Diyas for someone close to you.
Make the puja thali ready
Let your little ones assemble the little things needed for pooja and set it in the thali in advance. Kids are sure to flaunt their work and feel proud of the little things they do during the festivals.
Families and friends usually get together after Diwali pooja to enjoy the celebrations together. Organize games like Diya lighting contest, rangoli competition. Get printable cards and colors for kids or a quiz to make the gathering exciting for kids. Let the kids bring out their creative best and be delighted to light up the house with gleaming diyas and candles made by them. Diwali is also a great time for you to demonstrate the values you want your children to learn.
Participate in the puja
Teach the children simple Lakshmi Shlokas that they can recite while they participate in the puja. Do explain the meaning and the significance of why we do the puja. This story describes why Goddess Lakshmi visits the Earth every year to keep a promise made to a farmer she worked for.
Celebrate Diwali to reinforce both cultural and family values in your children and provide a connection with the community. We wish you and your family with health and prosperity, peace and love! Happy Deepawali!