Updated, May 12, 2023
National Days offer fun moments of celebration throughout the year for some of the little things in life that bring us so much joy like chocolate cake (January 27), pi (March 14), and pets (April 11). The month of May is jam-packed with fun days of acknowledgment, appreciation, and celebration. Here’s a little history on a few that we’re celebrating this month.
Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month:
The U.S. celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander Month each May in honor of the influences and contributions Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (including Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia) have had in shaping the United States. Did you know that 20,000 Chinese immigrants helped build the first transcontinental railroad in the United States? An important part of American history, the transcontinental railroad took seven years to complete and was the first railway to link the eastern and western United States, creating industrial opportunities throughout the country. It was completed on May 10, 1869, which is one of the reasons we celebrate AAPI Heritage Month in May. You can read more about the history of AAPI heritage month here.
Teacher Appreciation Week:
You may have noticed an extra big smile on teachers’ faces this month. That’s because the first full week of May is Teacher Appreciation Week and, with any luck, teachers all over the country were spoiled with treats, thanks, and praise. Did you know that former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt was the person who introduced the idea of a national teacher appreciation day to Congress? Although some states observed it yearly (thanks to Eleanor Roosevelt), it didn’t become an official week of thanks until 1985, when Congress officially recognized the importance of showing appreciation for our teachers! Study up on teacher appreciation week here.
National Inventors Month:
One of the newer National months, National Inventors Month celebrates a lot of the same things we celebrate at CSFB: ingenuity, creativity, curiosity, and the courage to experiment. We would add that there’s a healthy dose of “stick-to-itiveness” to being an inventor (and a successful student) too. This was just a fun one we had to share through social media this month. Did you know that trampolines and Braille (yes, to help people who are blind or who have low vision read!) were invented by teenagers? And that a delicious accident by an 11-year-old led to the invention of the popsicle?! If you have a budding inventor in your household inspire them with this Reader’s Digest list of “The 14 Coolest Things Invented By Kids.”
National Bike To School Day:
Any day that encourages kids to get some exercise while having some fun is a good day in our book. National Bike to School Day is held on the third Friday in May and encourages kids to exercise and embrace a healthy lifestyle. Plus it’s fun! This year’s National Bike to School Day is on Friday, May 20th and we encourage kids of all ages to get out and ride! Just remember to wear a helmet and follow all safety rules and regulations.
National Scavenger Hunt Day:
Did you know that organized scavenger hunts have been a popular party game since the 1930s? It’s true, and now May 24th is officially known as National Scavenger Hunt Day. A great activity for all ages, scavenger hunts utilize creative thinking, encourage team bonding, and let kids practice their problem-solving skills in a cool way. Find a little fun today and make up your own scavenger hunt for friends and family. Or check out this list of Baltimore scavenger hunts to seek out a little educational fun around town.
Mental Health Awareness Month:
May is Mental Health Month and a great opportunity to raise awareness, reduce the stigma around mental health, and prioritize self-care and well-being. Often, end-of-year exams and standardized tests can cause children to feel anxious and apprehensive. Parents may be able to help their children manage their stress by lending an ear, reassuring them and expressing their confidence in them. Click here for some more insights and tips to help your child with test-taking anxiety.
Cinco De Mayo:
Did you know that Cinco de Mayo was first celebrated in Mexico to commemorate Mexico’s victory over France during the (1862) Franco-Mexican War?! While Cinco de Mayo is still recognized in parts of Mexico, it’s far more popular here in the U.S. – where it’s become more about celebrating Mexican culture in general. Want to know more about this victorious day in history? Check out this article by National Geographic Kids.
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