How To Celebrate a Birthday
Everyone wants to be remembered and cherished on the special day they were born. The Montessori Celebration of Life is a lovely way to celebrate a child's birthday in a school setting.
Children love to hear about the journey from birth to the present day. They want to listen to stories, look at photos, and remember beautiful memories. They want to know how cherished they are and how our life and world are better because they were born into our family or now belong to our class. The Montessori Celebration of Life is the perfect way to do this.
Many Montessori schools use some form of a sun, the months, a candle, and a globe to help show the passage of time and the growth of the child from birth to this birthday celebration.
Credit: Mountain West Montessori School
In preparation for the Montessori Celebration of Life, the parents of the birthday child are asked to bring in a picture for each year of the child's life and write a short life story to accompany the pictures.
Birthday Walk Around the Sun
All of the children make a large circle around the sun that has been placed on the floor. The birthday child stands beside the label with their birth month. The parent or teacher lights the candle to signify the moment the child is born. They then begin reading the life story up until the age of one. At this point, the birthday child begins the journey walking (slowly) around the sun one time, with the globe in their hands - stopping when they reach their birth month again. While the birthday child walks, the children in the outer circle sing (to the tune of The Farmer in the Dell):
The reading of the life story continues until the age of two. The birthday child begins to walk around the sun again, and the children in the circle repeat singing the verse, changing the ending to '2'.
This continues until the child's life story is complete.
Then, to complete the celebration, the following can be sung to the birthday child (to the tune of Happy Birthday):
Sample of a Birthday Story
Daniel was born on Jan 17th, 2001. It was a sunny but cold day. Daniel’s big brother, Christopher, was so excited to finally meet him. Daniel loved to be held and rocked when he was a baby.
When Daniel was 1 year old, he loved to eat bananas. His favorite thing to do was to splash in the bathtub.
When Daniel turned 2 years old, his little brother Lucas was born. Daniel loved to hug Lucas. His favorite book was The Hungry Caterpillar. When Daniel was two, he wanted to play in his toy car every day – even in the winter!
When Daniel was 3 years old, he started going to the Credit Valley Montessori School. His favorite work was Sandpaper Letters. At 3, Daniel loved to sing. He looked forward to singing in circle time every day.
Now Daniel is 4 years old. He just learned how to ride a bike without training wheels. Daniel loves to make designs with the Metal Insets, and his favorite work is the Moveable Alphabet. Happy Birthday Daniel!
Waldorf Birthday Ring
There are lots of variations to the above celebration that can be used in a school setting. Many families use a Waldorf-inspired Birthday Ring, which makes a beautiful celebration for a child and their family.
Credit: Waldorf Mama
Credit: My Child's Diary