Celebrate Mardi Gras with your kids with these fun activities, crafts, and food!
Mardi Gras Fireworks Show
Group Activity: The colors of Mardi Gras are purple (for justice), green (for faith), and gold (for power). For younger children, have them give examples of things that are those colors. (Ex. “A frog is green.”) For older children, have them give examples of things that represent the color meanings. (Ex. “A king has power.)
Now give each child a purple, green, or yellow scarf and have them pretend they are fireworks. Have the children sit down and call out a color. If it is the color of their scarf, they jump up like a firework. Have younger children shout the name of their color (Ex. “Purple!”) as they jump and have older children shout the meaning of their color (Ex. “Justice!) The faster you go, the more fun it is!
Make Believe Gumbo
Individual or Group Activity: Gumbo is a stew that originated from Louisiana during the 18th century. It consists of a strongly-flavored stock, meat or shellfish, a thickener, and celery, bell peppers, and onions (known as the Cajun holy trinity of vegetables). For this activity, you will need a variety of toy vegetables (we also added fruit for fun), six containers, a large pot, and a long spoon. First, have your child sort the food by placing the same colored foods in the containers (as pictured). Then, have them decide what they want to add to their pot to make their very own gumbo soup! As your child adds the ingredients to the pot, have them say what the food is and what color it is. Mmmm… Delicious!
Group Activity: It just isn’t Mardi Gras unless beads are involved! Give each child two beaded necklaces and have them count how many necklaces there are in total by counting by two’s. Have the children line up. Each child will say their number when it is their turn. (Ex. The first child will say “two,” the second child will say “four,” and so on until the last child has said their number.
Mardi Gras Mask
Individual or Group Activity: Hundreds of years ago, people began wearing masks during Mardi Gras so that people of all different classes could mingle together and pretend to be whomever they wanted!
- Yellow circular paper plate
- Green Feather
- Purple popsicle stick
- Using scissors, carefully cup a yellow paper plate in half.
- Using scissors, carefully cut out two small diamonds (for the eye holes as pictured).
- Use stickers and markers to decorate the mask.
- Glue the green feather to the back of the mask (as pictured).
- Glue the purple popsicle stick to the back of the mask (as pictured).
Make a King Cake
Individual or Group Activity: Hundreds of King Cakes are eaten every Mardi Gras season, as it is the preferred dessert in New Orleans. King Cakes are made with a cinnamon filled dough in the shape of a hollow circle, topped with a delicious glaze, and sprinkled with purple, green and gold sugar.
Have your child help make a King Cake with you from start to finish, including shopping for the ingredients. If your kids are anything like mine, they will love baking with you and feel a sense of great accomplishment!
For different ways to make a Mardi Gras King Cake, click here.