Produced in association with Costumebox
Australia Day means something different to each individual in this country. For some, it’s a day off work, a BBQ, beer. For others it’s all about sitting around the pool listening to JJJ’s hottest 100 countdown. For many, it’s known as ‘invasion day’ and a day that shouldn’t be celebrated.
For young kids though, Australia Day can be an opportunity to engage in a lot of learning. Depending on their age they can be exposed to a number of things including history, typical Aussie traditions, identity and what makes them Australian. Knowledge is power. If they know enough, when they are adults they can then form their own opinions and make an informed choice on how they spend Australia day!
Why I’m celebrating with my toddlers
It’s very important to me that my beautiful boys know that they are Australian. They are so lucky to be embedded within more than one culture. However, throughout their whole life people will ask them “Where are you from?” as they still do, me. They don’t want to know what town they live in. They want to know why they’re a different colour. Like me though, they were born here, they belong here and they are predominately Australian. I want them to be extremely proud of their Egyptian/Australian heritage. I want them to be proud to educate others on the fact that having another skin colour doesn’t mean you are “from somewhere else”. Actually, Australians come in all different colours and that’s what makes us awesome.
Here’s 5 ways you can get Aussie with your toddlers on Australia Day:
1.Throw a dress-up party
Pre- children, it was so easy to just laze around on Australia Day. Minimal effort was key. With kids on board though, you can make it fun by throwing an Australia Day Party and pair it up with some fun Australia Day Clothing. Most of us don’t display our patriotism during the year with Aussie t-shirts and the likes, so Australia Day is a pretty good day to go all out and get crazy! I’m loving some of the accessories at Costume Box which you can see here.
2. Read and act out classic Aussie picture books
We’ve all got Aussie books that tickled our fancy when we were kids, and if you don’t, then go exploring! Jackie French, Graeme Base and Mem Fox. For older kids, Morris Gleitzman and Paul Jennings are my favourite go-tos. Not only are they all BRILLIANT Australian writers, their writing is peppered with Australian humour, animals and way of life.
3. Get out the globe
Ok, so Google Maps if you don’t have a globe. Remember the ATLAS!? Seems like forever ago. Show your kids where we are in relation to other countries. Who are our neighbouring countries? If they have friends or family who have migrated from another country, help them build the understanding of how far they’ve travelled to be here.
4. Expose them to Aussie music
No matter what genre appeals to you most, you’re bound to find epic Aussie artists that suit your style. from The Wiggles to Kylie Minogue, Paul Kelly, Cold Chisel and Silverchair, you’re bound to find the perfect mix to get your kids grooving! My favourite mix is The Wiggles as covered by Aussie Artists. It’s fantastic listening.
5. Cook Aussie food
You might already do this, but if you don’t, now is the time to get out your lamingtons, sausages, pav, vegemite and get cooking. If that doesn’t take your fancy, why not research a famous Aussie product with your kids and have them try their hands at a recipe? Who doesn’t love anything with Tim Tams in it right? I love these Caramel Tim Tam Cheesecake Balls from Bake Play Smile!
Australia Day is unique to me, as it is to you and your own reflections and understandings. Whatever you choose to do, I hope you have a fantastic day filled with all that is great about this country. I certainly feel very, very lucky to live here.
How are you celebrating Australia Day with your little ones?