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5 Activities to Celebrate Juneteenth with the Children in Your Center

Did you know 28% of Americans know nothing about the holiday, Juneteenth? 

Holidays are a great way to spread historical knowledge, as well as ensure inclusivity.

Finding educational and fun activities for your students can be difficult, so here’s a curated list of Juneteenth activities for all of your students to enjoy!

A Brief History of Juneteenth

On June 19th, Black Americans gathered together to honor the official ending of slavery in the United States.

Juneteenth (short for June 19th), was the day that federal troops marched into Galveston, Texas to let the enslaved peoples know that they were now free. On June 17th, 2021, Juneteenth became a federal holiday. 

How to Celebrate Juneteenth at Your Childcare Center

1) Have a story time.

Story time is always a fun time in the classroom, but Juneteenth can be an emotionally heavy holiday to speak about with children.

Nonetheless, there are a few children’s books that are appropriate and explain the holiday in a way for daycare-aged children to understand.

Here are a few books, by Black authors who explain the history of the holiday so well:

Juneteenth for Mazie: celebrate Juneteenth

Juneteenth for Mazie by Floyd Cooper

What is Juneteenth: celebrate Juneteenth

What is Juneteenth by Kirsti Jewel

Juneteenth Jamboree: celebrate Juneteenth

Juneteenth Jamboree by Carole Boston Weatherford

The Story of Juneteenth: celebrate Juneteenth

The Story of Juneteenth by Dorena Williams

2) Make a Pan-African flag.

Arts and crafts are an educational and fun way to get your students engaged with a holiday. They are also great for motor skills! The button flag is a fun and easy craft to do and you only need a few materials.

  • Thick popsicle sticks

  • Different colored buttons (the Pan-African Flag is red, black, and green)

  • Glue

Juneteenth button flag: celebrate Juneteenth

Juneteenth button flag

3) Eat red-colored snacks.

In many West African cultures, the color red is a symbol of strength, spirituality, life, and death.

For Juneteenth celebrations, red food and drinks are a significant way to acknowledge the holiday, as well as the history of enslavement. Some red food and drinks that you all can snack on are red velvet cupcakes, strawberries, watermelon, and fruit punch.

red velvet cupcakes for Juneteenth: celebrate Juneteenth

Idea for red-colored snack

4) Decorate the classroom for the month of June.

The official color scheme for Juneteenth is red, black, and green. Decorating the classroom prior to the holiday or for the month of June could be a fun class activity that encourages teamwork!

daycare kids in classroom: celebrate Juneteenth

Children raising their hands

5) Create a Juneteenth-Themed sensory bin.

Sensory bins are a simple way to celebrate holidays with younger children. They promote motor skills and offer children the opportunity to learn through tactile play while engaging their senses.

As long as the theme matches the colors for Juneteenth, your students will be able to learn and have fun at the same time!

Juneteenth-themed sensory bin: celebrate Juneteenth

Child playing in a sensory bin

Promote inclusivity and diversity in your centers.

As a childcare provider, it is important to celebrate holidays to educate and encourage inclusivity within the classroom. You can enjoy learning about Juneteenth by doing one or all of these activities. 

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Meet The Author

Asyah Jiron is a marketing intern with professional experience in field marketing, content, and advertising. She attends the University of North Texas and is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies with a Marketing concentration. Asyah is passionate about growing her marketing knowledge and always tackles any new challenge thrown her way.

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