St. Patrick’s Day takes place on the same day every year on March 17. This year, the holiday falls on a Tuesday. We love a good holiday to use as an excuse to make decorations, do a fun craft, and show our festive spirit. Especially with young kids, St. Patrick’s Day is about the endless possibilities of green food coloring, all the leprechaun crafts, and maybe a run through McDonald’s for a Shamrock Shake.
Celebrating Irish culture is what St. Patrick’s Day is all about. Oddly enough, most of the traditions we partake in today were created in the United States.
Americans celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by wearing green, but have you ever wondered why? Chances are your kids will be asking you this question. The tradition of wearing green on St. Patricks’ Day came about because when Irish immigrants came to live in America, they did not want to be seen by leprechauns. According to Irish folklore, the leprechaun was something of a trickster and not one to get caught up with (leprechauns were known to pinch anyone they could see).
One way to avoid these fairy creatures was to wear green, a color that their eyes could not detect. So, Irish immigrants believed that they would not be seen by leprechauns if they wore green. This is also why you might get pinched (by a human, not a leprechaun) if you’re not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day.
This holiday is a great way to teach kids about celebrating other cultures. Introducing them to ancient stories like the one about the leprechauns is a fun way to get their attention.
Trying new foods is also a delicious way to celebrate. Corned beef and cabbage is a popular Irish-American dish served on St. Patrick’s Day. Though this is another tradition that originated in America, it is still considered an Irish dish. Irish immigrants would use corned beef as an alternative to the traditional bacon that they used in their home country. Perhaps when accompanied by a unique story, your kids are more likely to gobble up a bowl…maybe.
Crafts, games, and decorations are always an easy and fun way to celebrate any holiday, but St. Patrick’s Day is especially fun because of the green color association and all the other symbols. The three-leaf clover, or shamrock, is a popular symbol of St. Patrick’s Day. According to Irish legend, the shamrock was used to explain the Holy Trinity to non-believers.
There are all kinds of easy crafts and decorations you can make using the color green and the symbols of St. Patrick’s Day. Have you ever noticed how a trip to the craft store can really add up? Doing fun crafts at home is not always an inexpensive activity. This is one reason why shopping at a thrift store for some of your craft supplies is the way to go.
While you may need to purchase things like paints, glue, and other art supplies at a craft store, you can find most of your other supplies at your local Goodwill. Plus, it’s a more creative shopping experience. Imagine walking in the kitchen aisle and asking your kids if they can spot anything that could be made into a leprechaun hat. They get to use their problem solving and creativity skills while shopping, and you save money on some of your larger craft supplies. It’s a win-win.
Check out these ideas for inspiration to get your little ones in the spirit of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.
Ready to go on the hunt for craft supplies? Find a Goodwill location near you!
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