National Compliment Day (January 24): Start the year on a positive note by sharing kind words about those around you. Did dad make you pancakes for breakfast? Complement his culinary skills. Did your sister empty the dishwasher when it was your turn? Tell her she’s the best sister ever! What about the classmates who worked with you on a Spanish project? Tell them: “¡Ustedes son fabulosos!”
International Polar Bear Day (February 27): These beautiful arctic animals are listed as endangered because their habitat is disappearing. The bears spend much of their lives on sea ice, which is melting due to human-caused climate change. The bears have to travel farther in search of food. It also means more ships (and people) are disrupting this formerly remote area. On the day, read about polar bears and what you can do to save the species.
Take a walk in the park day (March 30th): When winter is officially over and the spring flowers appear, it’s the perfect time for a stroll at a local park or one that’s not so close by. Visit the Kids in Parks website (kidsinparks.com) to find trails in 15 states and the District of Columbia. If you sign up for the TRACK Trails program, you can win prizes for staying in nature. This is something to celebrate!
Haiku Poetry Day (April 17): KidsPost features poems for National Poetry Month each April. We love a good sonnet, acrostic or villanelle. But a traditional haiku—a three-line poem with five syllables on the first line, seven on the second, and five on the third—is a particularly fun challenge. For inspiration, read KidsPost readers’ poems about squirrels (wapo.st/SquirrelHaiku).
Mayday for Mutts (May 1): The word mutt used to be a negative term for a dog that was not purebred and probably not smart. Thankfully, most people today think that mutts or mixed-breed dogs make wonderful companions. If you have a mixed breed dog, give them an extra treat today. And if you know someone who would like to add a dog to their family, encourage them to adopt one from an animal shelter or rescue organization.
Day of your cat’s hug (June 4): There is a saying that every dog has his day. But every cat should too! According to the 2018 census of the American Veterinary Medical Association, there is at least one cat in nearly 32 million US households. But not all cats would appreciate a hug on their special day. So give Luna or Milo whatever they like best, whether it’s a cuddle, a chin scratch, or a tag game.
Fry an egg on sidewalk day (July 4): You know the expression “It’s so hot you could fry an egg on the sidewalk”? According to the Library of Congress, they’ve been around for a long time, perhaps since an 1899 newspaper column. It’s a mystery who pushed people to try this on July 4th (though it’s often sweltering that day) . But Oatman, Arizona, takes it seriously. Every July 4th, the Solar Egg Frying Contest offers a prize for the best egg cooked in the sun.
Game in the Sand Day (August 11): You may have noticed how much fun sand can be when you were a toddler in the sandbox in your backyard. But the tiny boulders aren’t just for little kids. Sand has been so much fun for all ages that the Strong National Museum of Play inducted him into the National Toy Hall of Fame last year. So if you can, go to the beach today to build a spectacular sandcastle.
Wonderful weirdos day (September 9): Austin, Texas prides itself on being kinda weird — doing things differently. It’s a place where a junk cathedral can become a must-see attraction. So it’s not surprising that a group of Austin residents proposed an unofficial holiday and encouraged everyone to do the same. Be a little crazy to celebrate. Wear inappropriate clothing or try an unusual hairstyle. And do it, as Austinites do, with pride.
International Animation Day (28.10.): If you like animated films, you have Émile Reynaud to thank for it. The Frenchman invented a machine called Optical Theater that projected a series of painted images onto a screen. Reynaud’s invention was published in a museum in Paris, France on October 28, 1892. Watch your favorite animated film today as part of this worldwide celebration.
International Tongue Twister Day (November 13): Tongue twisters have been around since at least 1813, when John Harris published Peter Piper’s Practical Principles of Plain and Perfect Pronunciation. Even the title is a mouthful. Try a tongue twister challenge with your parents or a friend today. Here’s a tricky question from Dr. Seuss: “Through three cheese trees flew three free fleas.” Try saying that three times quickly.
National Popcorn String Day (December 13): Popcorn may just be a snack, but it used to be a popular Christmas decoration. It is not known who came up with the idea, but Colonial Williamsburg notes that Charles Minnigerode shared with neighbors the German tradition of decorating a Christmas tree in 1842. They tied popcorn around the branches. Ask your parents if you can bring back this tradition with stale popcorn, waxed dental floss, and a needle. Then decorate the halls!