Happy Independence Day! Today, Filipinos all over the world celebrate our Independence Day. If you're a homeschooling mom like me, you must be wondering, "How can I share with my child this special day in our country's history? How do I make him understand how special this day is?"
Here are some of my suggested activities to help moms celebrate Independence Day with their young children. My husband and I also plan to do some of these with our kids, especially our eldest son who is 3 years old.
1. Teach him our national anthem "Lupang Hinirang." - Our musically-gifted son doesn't know how to sing this yet. He has learned a lot of other songs (most of these we sing in the Masses and prayer meetings) in the past but we have yet to teach him this. So, we feel that today is just perfect for our little boy to learn our national anthem. I also plan to share the beat of our national anthem and how it is done (ala orchestra conductor hehe). I can still remember vividly how we as students during my elementary days would take turns doing the beat with our hands everyday during flag ceremony.
2. Make a flag as an art activity. - I plan to make this with Yanthy. He will fold, cut and paste colored paper to make the red, blue and yellow parts of our flag. Then he will color the stars and draw the lines for the sun's rays. Once we have our flag ready, we will sing our national anthem in front of it with our right hand over our chest, a mini flag ceremony at home. :)
|Rizal monument at Rizal Park in Manila.|
3. Visit a historical place. - You can visit the nearest historical place to your home or choose to visit Rizal Park and introduce yoour child to our national hero. Have your pictures taken at the site and have a picnic on the grass. My husband and I were thinking about going there and showing the park and Rizal's monument to our son. We hope it doesn't rain or he wakes up early enough to go there before it rains.
4. Introduce a hero to your child. - We have so many Filipino heroes we can be proud of. This would be a good time to introduce at least one. Like if your child doesn't know any hero yet, you can start with Jose Rizal or someone you feel that he can identify with. You can read a book, watch a video, go to a monument, show the hero in our money (bill or coin), etc. I think that it is better to introduce kids to real life heroes first before introducing them to fictional heroes. Real life heroes like Rizal, Bonifacio, and the heroes in the Bible are heroes I'd like my sons to look up to more than the super heroes in films because these are real people with real challenges who conquered their challenges thus making them heroes.
5. Play a Filipino game. - In this time where gadgets dominate, it would be nice to go back to old fashion fun through any of our old favorite games -- piko, holen, patintero, shato, agawan base, agawan panyo, etc. Whatever was your favorite Filipino game as a child, share it with your child. You can even play bugtungan which was one of the favorite past times of Filipinos long ago.
6. Eat a famous Filipino food or dish. - Today, we will introduce the mango to our son as our national fruit. He eats mango already but we want to tell him that it is our national fruit and that it is a famous fruit exported to many countries. You can also choose other foods we Filipinos are famous for like you can cook adobo today or binagoongang baboy, dinuguan or bicol express. Your choice!
These are just six of the things you can do to celebrate our independence day. You may come up with your own list. Whatever will work best for you and your kids depending on their ages and interests. The important thing is that with what we do today, we make them proud to be Filipinos and teach them to love their country more. Happy Independence Day!