Learning about Diwali with Kids

Happy Diwali!

Learning about the cultures our parents come from is part of a bilingual family.  My husband and I both try our best to expose our children to both our faiths, Hinduism and Christianity. My husband is from India where they celebrate Diwali along with many other festivals.  Diwali , the Festival of Lights, is one of the most significant holidays in Hinduism. 

I created a very simple handout for my daughter to make so she could learn some of the significant details about Diwali. We shared it with her class at school.  Both her and I dressed up in our Indian clothes and brought Indian sweets for the children to sample.  It was a lot of fun.  

Here's a Printable of the Diwali Handout

Some of the vocabulary words we introduced and showed examples of...

  • Diyas
  • Fireworks
  • Rangoli 
  • Sweets
  • Lengha
  • Kurta
  • Sari
  • Bangles

Diwali Resources for your Hindi Bilingual Babies

I found a great website called Gnaana  for seeing the helping children understand the steps to prepare for Diwali including decorations and about Diwali Puja, which my daughter started learning about last year.  Here's a photo of the offering she prepared all by herself.

  • Here is a Diwali Toolkit to teach others about Diwali. 
  • Here are some adorable coloring sheets and cards to create for Diwali!  
  • My daugther enjoys this video about Diwali in India.  I love that they have real clips from the markets getting ready for Diwali. 
  • Here's a cute clip of Mickey and Donald getting sweets ready for Diwali with Minnie Mouse!   Diwali with Mickey Mouse! 
  • Diwali information on Kid Citizen World
  • Even President Obama extends his Diwali wishes too here

I think it's a great idea to relate things to your child with people or characters they may already recognize.  It's a great way to make them feel connected to another culture.

Make your Own Diya for Diwali

My daughter and I decided to make our own version of Diyas for Diwali.  Diyas are places outside of homes on Diwali to light up the night.  We simply used some recycled baby food jars to create our candle holders.  We also used glitter paint and sequins with adhesive.  It was great fun to sit with my inlaws and create them.  My daughter is more into repetitive designs when she does her art so detailed Indian Art Work is right up her alley.  It was also a great way to take about symbols of Diwali with her Dadi Ji and Dada Ji (name for grandparents on Father's side)

Here's what our diyas looked like as we lit them on Diwali! 

As the holy occasion of Diwali is here and the atmosphere is filled with the spirit of mirth and love, here’s hoping this festival of beauty brings your way, bright sparkles of contentment, that stay with you through the days ahead. Best wishes on Diwali and New year. 

To Learn More About India Click Here

Or Check out our Diwali fun with Playdough Below


maryanne @ mama smiles said...

Your handout is such a nice, simple introduction to Diwali! And your daughter looks beautiful in her Indian clothes. I really like the baby food jar Diyas, too.

Kim@The Educators' Spin On It said...

Thanks Maryanne! She loves getting dressed in her indian clothes! And can't wait to put out her Diyas tomorrow night!

Lesley @ early play said...

Happy Diwali to you from your newest follower. Doesn't pink and green suit your daughter?

Kim@The Educators Spin On It said...

Thanks Lesley! She just loves her pink and green lengha! I love you site and just became your newest follower!

Raising a Happy Child said...

I think Diwali is a beautiful holiday that is celebrated pretty widely here in CA. Unfortunately, October is so very full for us to be able to fit something else, but I pinned your post for the future.

Kim@The Educators' Spin On It said...

October was pretty busy at our house this year. Diwali falls on different dates each year based on the lunar calendar. Diwali in 2012 will start on Tuesday, the 13th of November and will continue for 5 days until Saturday, the 17th of November.

Aruna said...

What wonderful ideas to celebrate - your daughter looks gorgeous in her lehenga! We will have to share some of these ideas for next year.

Kim@The Educator's Spin On It said...

Thanks Aruna! I love your blog and you've inspired me to work with my little Bindi Babies :)

mermaid said...

Your daughter is so cute and I love these clothes!!!

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