Current Events

Pink Shirt Day Reminds Us How To Be Friends

What is Pink Shirt Day? Pink Shirt Day reminds us how to be friends and we celebrate it by wearing pink shirts. It started by a simple act of kindness and compassion with an anti-bullying message.

pink shirt day friends

This day was born ten years ago. A high school student noticed another student being bullied after he wore a pink shirt to school. Because he had been bullied too he was bothered by the situation. He and a friend bought dozens and dozens of pink shirts and passed them out to others to all wear at school. The message spread and more people joined in. Now, it is spreading around the world and including people of all ages.

Earlier this month, I saw an article headline that concerns preschool children, “Nurseries urged to provide a ‘safe space’ for boys to wear pink and girls to be builders.” It seems no matter how hard we try and be neutral, somehow kids pick up that some toys and clothes are for girls, that is pink and dolls, and some are for boys, like blue and action figures. As young as kids are in preschool programs, they encounter what the article calls ‘gender-police.’ Fortunately, “…children are very understanding and accepting, they simply need to have the situation explained to them,” that all kids can play with all toys and not everyone will like the same things. It’s okay for some girls to play with building blocks and some boys to play with dolls. It’s okay for boys and girls to both wear pink and blue.

pink shirt day acts of kindness

Pink Shirt Day reminds us how to be friends. It not only promotes understanding, it also encourages us to support each other. We need to be more accepting and offer each other kindness. Even a small act of kindness can mean a huge difference to another person. It can grow and create amazing connections. In the spirit of Pink Shirt Day, no matter where you live, can you encourage your child to do something kind for someone else?

 

How to Celebrate World Read Aloud Day with Kids

To celebrate World Read Aloud Day, grab a book, invite a kid or two to your lap, and read.WRAD

Here’s a poem in the style of Dr. Seuss for inspiration:

TAKE IT AWAY, WORLD READ ALOUD DAY

Today, around the world, for all
Will you hear this reading call?
Will you read aloud today?
This is World Read Aloud Day!

Any favorite story or book,
New or old, take a look,
Then say the words so we can hear,
Say them, say them, loud and clear.

In a car or on a boat,
In pajamas or a coat,
On the sofa or in bed,
Say aloud the words instead.

Should you? Could you? Yes, of course.
Read aloud with lots of force.
Do not mumble neither grumble,
Whisper softly, barely speak.
Let’s read aloud in any place,
Oh yes, even outer space.

Far and near, up and down.
On the farm, and in the town.
We are reading to each other,
We are reading all together.

This is World Read Aloud Day.
Enjoy the sound of the voice,
Reading from a book of choice.
No, not one, but oh so many,

Lots and lots, we shall read plenty.
Poem and story, yarn and tale.
We’ll read aloud; we will not fail.

On a face, do you see the smile?
Come and listen for a while.
Stay right here and give your ear.
Read Aloud Day is full of cheer!

(by Barbara Allisen aka Mrs.

Poppies, Service, and Peace for Veterans Day and Remembrance Day

Veterans Day and Remembrance Day are significant day is a significant day for past, present, and future. Not only are we remembering those Veterans and Soldiers who fought and died in past wars and conflicts, we are also honoring those who serve now. For the future, we are continuing the efforts to resolve conflicts with understanding and peace.

The Poppy Lady Remembrance Day Poppy Day

 Some people will have the day-off. If this is a non-work day for your family, you may be able to watch or go to an event in your area. There may be a parade or other ceremony. Even though young children are comfortable in a smaller circle of of family and friends, we can help them be aware that they are part of a larger community.

The Poppy Lady by Barbara Walsh and Layne Johnson is a simple story of the effort of one lady, Moina Belle Michael. A teacher, who supported soldiers is various ways, she did not want them to be forgotten. When she read the poem, In Flanders Fields by John McCrae she added the verse:

And now the Torch and Poppy red
We wear in honor of our dead.
Fear not that ye have died for nought,
We’ll teach the lesson that ye wrought
In Flanders Fields.

When the wear ended she convinced many organizations to adopt the poppy as a memorial flower. The sale of red poppies raised millions to support returning Veterans.

Bright, red poppies are pinned onto coats and jackets. They are a visual reminder and kids want to know why we wear them. Wearing poppies shows we are thinking about our Veterans and Soldiers.

Veterans Day Remembrance Day drawing

 Veterans, current members of the armed forces, cadets and children in service groups like Scouts, Cubs, and Beavers march in Remembrance Day parades. In a way, this links past, present, and future. In the US, there are 3 days: Veterans Day, Memorial Day, and Armed Forces Day. But for all of these, there is the message of service and striving for peace. Today, for Veterans Day and Remembrance Day is there a way your family can support serving others and the goal of peace?

Olympic Games #17– What is the Role of Sports for Kids?

This weekend is the Olympics Closing Ceremonies. As the Games end, it’s a good time to think about what is the role of sports for kids? Perhaps, more importantly, how do we encourage young children in sports without pushing them? Family therapist and parenting expert Carleton Kendrick has some excellent suggestions for preschool kids. In … Continue reading Olympic Games #17– What is the Role of Sports for Kids?

Olympic Games #14 – Olympic Lego Activities and Play

Today’s Games event is Olympic Lego activities and play. Medals aren’t given out for toys but if they were, Lego would win the gold. Lego may look like a simple, humble toy but it gets the top score for both technical merit and artistic impression. Lego scores high for artistic expression as well. It is … Continue reading Olympic Games #14 – Olympic Lego Activities and Play

Olympic Games #13 – Olympic Playdough Activities

If there were Olympic medals for the performance of toys, playdough would be a winner. Let’s go for the gold with some Olympic playdough activities. Playdough comes in all colors of the rainbow but not exactly gold, silver, and bronze. Those colors are found in the pot at the end of the rainbow. However, kids … Continue reading Olympic Games #13 – Olympic Playdough Activities

Olympic Games #9: Sand Play Activities for Kids – Beach Optional

Now that the Olympic Games include beach volleyball, it’s time to play in the sand. Beaches are fun but not necessary for sand play activities for kids. Just like water play (see yesterday’s Water Play Activities for Kids), there are many ways for kids to play in the sand. Of course, what could be more … Continue reading Olympic Games #9: Sand Play Activities for Kids – Beach Optional

Olympic Games #8: Splash up Some Water Play Activities for Kids

All the Olympic Games excitement in and on the water with medals and new records is splashing up some water play activities for kids. For kids, water play might take the gold medal. In Rio, there are events for diving, swimming, rowing, sailing, and water polo. Just like the Games, there are many different ways … Continue reading Olympic Games #8: Splash up Some Water Play Activities for Kids

Olympics #4: Opening Ceremony Inspires Pretend Play Parade

The Olympic Games Opening Ceremony can inspire today’s activity: a pretend play parade and performance with music and dancing. Kids can be Team Imagination. Most kids, little and big, love a parade and what could be better than being in one? Like the athletes, they can march around, wave flags, and cheer. Hopefully, the weather … Continue reading Olympics #4: Opening Ceremony Inspires Pretend Play Parade