The Pot of Gold
Hide a pot of gold (chocolate gold that is) for each child. One child goes out of the room while their pot is hidden. When they return they hunt for it. Other kids give "hot" and "cold" hints to let them know when they are getting close.
If you don't happen to find the little plastic pots, baggies with the chocolate coins will work just fine. They'll eat the candy one way or the other.
Save your shiny pennies for this activity. It's a modification of the Easter Egg hunt, but little Lincoln head pennies instead. Yes, I know they don't have Lincoln pennies in Ireland, but my kids have never even noticed.
Green Is In the Air, but not in the Hair
I'm not real big on green hair, though last year someone dyed the cat green. No kidding, I came home to a green cat. That's just going to far.
The flag pictured above was made simply with a white index card and green and orange construction paper. Once a child has made the flag of any country, they recognize it forever.
The shamrock chain is made the same as a paper doll chain or snow flake chain: folding up paper and cutting half the symbol. I found green construction paper to thick to make a very long chain. Thin green paper or plain white paper can be used.
This close up picture shows faces that were drawn on the clover chain with black and green ink pens.
Hearts and Clovers
This St. Patrick's Day card shows the names of the Trinity, the reason the three-sided clover was chosen as the Irish symbol. If your kids practiced making valentines hearts by folding construction paper in half, they can put those skills to good use this month as well. Three green hearts and a stem will produce a three-leave clover.
St. Patrick's Day Food
Every holiday seems to have special foods associated with it, and St. Patrick's Day is no different.
While Corned Beef and Cabbage is considered a traditional meal, it is not an authentic Irish meal. Irish immigrants to America brought the tradition of celebrating St. Patrick's Day to their new country. In the first years many of them were too poor to afford the foods which celebrated the day back home. So they bought the cheapest cut of meat and cabbage as a special treat on their day or remembrance.
Irish Stew and Irish Soda Bread are traditional foods that hail from the Irish homeland. You might want to make this a new family tradition.
St. Patrick's Day History
St. Patrick was a Christian missionary to Ireland in the fifth century. He was a Britain, kidnapped by Irish mercenaries, who spent 6 years in slavery during which time he became a Christian. He remained in Ireland as a missionary the rest of his life. He is reported to have died on March 17.
Numerous books and websites and web videos can give you more information about Patrick and the day that commemorates him and his adopted home of Ireland.
Play the geography game: Let Your Fingers Do the Walking
to find Ireland on a globe or map. After showing them where Ireland is located (the island west of Great Britain), they put their finger on the location of their home. With eyes shut or blind-folded, they need to "walk" their fingers to Ireland.
See who can get the closest to Dublin, the capital of Ireland. You can measure distances of several people with a centimeter tape measure to determine who comes closest.
Do you have any St. Patrick day traditions or activities you would like to share with others?