Diwali Festival is notably India’s largest and most important holiday of the year. As you get ready to celebrate this festival of lights, find below a list of craft ideas and activities that you can do with your kids as you decorate your homes.
Given the fact we’ve been living in a pandemic for most of 2020, I expected that time would move slower than it has. It seems like every time I blink, it’s the next season already and here we are into November. Can you believe we only have a month left of this year?
With time passing so quickly, I can’t believe it’s time for the Diwali Festival already. This year Diwali falls on November 14 with the celebration happening from November 12 to 16.
Never heard of Diwali Festival before? Don’t sweat it! Here are a few quick details to give you some information.
Simply put, Diwali is a five-day “Festival of Lights” that celebrates good triumphantly winning over evil. Every region in India has its own individual legend associated with the festival of lights with slightly different traditions to celebrate.
Many different Gods are worshipped during Diwali, however, there is a lot of focus on Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity. If you’re interested in learning more in-depth details about the history of the festival, check out my post from last year here.
How do we celebrate Diwali?
As I mentioned previously, each different region in India has slightly different traditions during the Diwali festival, however, there are some similarities in how we all celebrate.
To start, we clean and decorate our homes with diyas, and flowers. We shop for and wear new articles of clothing. We spend time with our loved ones and consume a vast array of delicious foods and sweets. We focus on appreciating the light and joy in each person’s life. And we do all of this while welcoming the Hindi new year.
Sounds interesting right? To deep dive into more details about Diwali Festival, take a peek at this blog.
Diwali Festival is notably India’s largest and most important holiday of the year so you may be wondering how to involve your kids in the celebration. Below you will find a list of crafts and activities that you can create together to celebrate Diwali and give your children a hands-on part in learning about tradition.
DIWALI DECOR & KIDS CRAFT IDEAS
1) Create Diwali Sweets with Playdoh
Playdoh is the best and is loved by kids of all ages. I love this activity because it gives children the chance to explore their creative side while learning about Diwali in a fun and memorable way. Pretend play is crucial to our children’s development, so giving them the opportunity to create sweets of their own that resemble sweets they will consume during Diwali is a fun way to meet this need.
- Playdoh (store-bought or homemade)
- Playdoh tools or household items to cut, mold, etc.
- Samples of Diwali sweets (photos or actual)
The step by step process for this one is really only one step. Recreate what you see!
A neat idea to take this activity to the next level is to add different scents to your playdoh (or make it with different scents). In doing so, you will have the opportunity to discuss different scents with your children as a part of the sensory-based play. Thanks to the Early Childhood Education blog for this one!
2) Paper Diya
Creating paper diya’s is a craft that’s great for a variety of ages and doesn’t require a ton of supplies either. These are so beautiful you’ll be able to use them as decor in your home for the celebration or even as gift tags. I love the version of this shared on The Crafty Angels blog.
- Colored paper and/or glitter paper
- Cardstock or thicker paper
- Gold shade paper
- Glue or a hot glue gun
And here’s the step by step guide to get going on these beautiful crafts:
- Cut out strips of colored paper. 1” x 8” is a great starting point, however, feel free to adjust the size based on how large or small you want the final project to be.
- Start by folding your paper in accordion style, width wise. If you notice that your accordion folding leaves you with an uneven edge, don’t stress! Just trim the end to make it even.
- Next, grab your cardstock or thicker paper. Cut out thinner pieces to fit onto the top part of the diya. For a general guideline, 2” width of accordion strip x 2” width of folds.
- Step 4 is an easy one! Take your accordion shape, and staple one of its ends to the cardstock strip. Do the same with the other end of the accordion and ensure there is no gap between the two accordion ends on the cardstock strip.
- If the middle portion of the accordion may be hanging loosely so secure with a drop of hot glue or by using a glue stick and applying pressure until dry.
- Grab your glitter paper for step 6. Cut out a flame shape.
- Add a drop of hot glue or apply glue to your diya and secure your flame perpendicular to it.
Since this craft is a little more in-depth, your kiddos may need a helping hand. These diya’s are beautiful and can be made in a multitude of colors to contribute to the vibrant, eye-popping colors that are part of the festival.
3) Paper Lantern
Paper lanterns are another simple craft that can be completed by children of all ages. The supply list is short for this one and because of its simple nature, it’s the perfect time to share more about the meaning behind the Diwali Festival with your kids. The Joy of Sharing knocked this one out of the park and I wanted to add it to the list here.
- Mandala pattern
- Popsicle craft sticks
- Tracing paper
- Metallic Washi Tape
- Colored Markers
- Hot Glue Gun
- LED tealight candle
Let’s jump right into the steps:
- Glue 4 craft sticks together to make a square. Repeat x 4 to make the sides of the lantern.
- Cut 4 square pieces of tracing paper that are the same size as the sides of the lantern.
- Trace and color the mandala pattern you’ve found on one of the tracing papers.
- Glue the tracing paper to the wood stick squares.
- Glue the 4 sides of the square lantern together using hot glue (or white glue for children).
- Use washi tape to decorate the edges of the lantern.
Once you’ve completed the 6 steps listed above, place an LED tealight candle inside of the lantern and place them throughout your home to decorate for Diwali.
4) Paper Plate Rangoli
For those that aren’t familiar, Rangoli is the traditional pattern arts usually created with colored sand, flour, petals, or rice. Creating a paper plate rangoli is a fun craft for your kiddos and requires very few supplies. Red Ted Art has put together a great process for this one.
- Paper plate
- Colored craft paper
- Craft glue
Let’s jump right in!
- Choose 5 to 6 colored craft papers. Select a color for each shape.
- Trace the shapes on the craft paper with a pencil and cut out.
- Glue your shapes to the paper plate in your desired pattern.
- Keep adding more shapes until your paper plate is filled. The more colorful and more shapes you add, the better the end result!
- To finish it off, use your scissors to cut a zigzag pattern on the outer edge of the plate.
I absolutely love this craft because of the variety of colors and the fact that kids of all ages can participate in this one.
5) Paper Punch-Out Lanterns
Paper punch-out lanterns are a fun and unique twist on classic paper lanterns (see my quick non-kids version here). These lanterns made the list of my top crafts for the Diwali Festival because they’re kid-friendly, bright, and straightforward to make! Thanks to Kids Activity Blog for sharing this one!
- Colorful paper
- Mini paper punches
To create your lantern:
- Fold the paper lengthwise.
- Cut slits along the folded edge until about an inch away from the edge.
- Unfold the lantern.
- Use your mini paper punches to create different shapes and patterns on the lantern.
- Bring the two long ends together and staple in place.
Once your lantern is in the final form, find a place in your Diwali decor to make the lantern glow with the use of a battery-operated LED candle.
Twinkling lights are one of the core pieces of Diwali Festival decor, so it only makes sense that most crafts would include light. If you celebrate Diwali I’d love to hear what traditions you follow in your home and how you make your children a part of them?
“Light a lamp of love, blast a chain of sorrow, shoot a rocket of prosperity, fire a flowerpot of happiness.”