April is Month of the Military Child, recognizing the important role military children play in their communities and the sacrifices they make for their families and country. The COVID-19 pandemic is still impacting the way communities celebrate, especially at school, but there are many ways you can Purple Up! with your child at home! Five ideas to get you started:
Start a New Hobby or Invest in an Existing One
Having a hobby is a great way for children to develop creativity, ownership, and pride in their abilities. If your child already has a hobby, consider a special gift to further their interest. For example, if they love to paint, purchase a special paint or brush set. If they don’t yet have a hobby, talk with them about their interests and see if they may want to give something new a try.
Enjoy Weekly Fun Night
Pick a night, Friday, for example, and give your child the power to decide what the family does for every Friday night in April. Whether it’s an activity like watching a movie or choosing what dinner will be, encourage them to make plans and then have fun doing those things!
This one is on every list to celebrate Month of the Military Child, and for a good reason! Purple Up! Day gives Americans the opportunity to wear purple in support of military children, thanking them for their strength and sacrifices. The official Purple Up! Day, established by the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA), is April 15, but individual state calendars may designate a different day. Help your child pick out their favorite purple apparel or, if the budget allows, help them pick out a new purple piece to add to their wardrobe!
Talk to Teachers
We know military children have unique challenges when it comes to school. Those challenges are amplified when school is virtual or hybrid and students don’t have the face-to-face time with their peers and teachers. Involving a teacher or coach in celebrations can be a nice surprise for your military child—and it may even be a positive effect for other military-connected students in the school.
Involve Your Kids!
Ask your children what would make them feel special throughout the month. There’s a good chance it may not take much to make them feel seen, appreciated, and loved. Perhaps they would love to make homemade pizza, eat their favorite ice cream, or spend quality time playing games with their family. Maybe they would like to write in a new journal, go on a hike, or stay in their pajamas and read books all day! You never know unless you ask!