Onam is a festival celebrated by Malayalis in Kerala or in any other part of the world to mark the homecoming of the Great King Mahabali. It’s also the start of the harvest season in Kerala. With Onam  round the corner, we thought why not start some activities  & worksheets to understand a different culture than ours. We love stories be it any time of the day & festivals give us a chance to explore our culture in a fun & colorful way. My son is 3 years old & for the last 2 years, all we did was making Pookolams.

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Pookolams are flower rangolis. I give assorted flowers to my son & he has to separate the petals & sort them as per their variety or color. This activity helps in fine motor skills which in turn helps in important tasks such as writing, feeding oneself, dressing up, etc. which requires the strength of finger muscles. Also, it helps in visual discrimination in patterns of petals & colors. Using these petals, we try to arrange them in a pattern or leave it for free play. This activity is ideal for kids starting 16 months.

Now, that he is 3years old & we’ve been doing more & more worksheets for over a year so, thought why not have both worksheets, games & craft activities this Onam. So, here is the list of activities we did along with our regular Pookolams.

1.Tiger mask:

Puli Kali aka tiger dance is one of the famous attractions of Onam during Kerala. So, we thought of making a tiger mask & do some Puli Kali dance at home. For this, you need either a medium-size paper plate or a thick yellow/white sheet. If your plate/sheet is white then please color it yellow, make some stripes using either black/brown color, cutout eyes & add a string to fit your head. Voila, you have your tiger mask ready & groove the tiger dance.

 

2.Nettipattom:

It is an ornament with a fabric base used to decorate elephants used for holy processions in Kerala. For this, we took a yellow sheet & cut it in a deep “U” shape. We had lots of old rakhis so use the beads, shiny stones & all other decorative pieces to for this headgear. We didn’t have any big elephant toys so used whatever small elephants we could procure at home. If you have a big elephant toy then this would look wonderful on it.

3.Thoranam:

Every South Indian family has a thoranam hanging on their door during festivals. Taking that as inspiration we created an Onam specific thoranam. The cutouts for this thoranam can be found in the free printable.

4.Kathakali:

We did color by the number on a Kathakali dancer face outline. Through this, my son got to know about a new dance form, their makeup & also names of some of the accessories that you can see on the face. The color sheet is available in the free printable.

5.Memory game:

We have been playing the Funskool memory game since last month. So, I created a memory game of Pookolams. This game is included in the free printable. We cut all the patterns & placed them pattern facing down. We pick random cards, trying to remember its placement & finding its match by flipping cards. He could not get it all but older kids would love this. My 7-year-old niece liked playing it.

6.Puppet show:

We read the story of Onam also available in the free printable. It was like the bedtime story for 4 continuous days. At last, we took some of the character cutouts, stuck them to popsicles & voila puppet narration of Onam story.

7.Worksheets:

I prepared Onam craft & worksheet for my son covering topics of counting, sorting, matching, phonics, sequencing & visual discrimination. This worksheet is ideal for kids starting 2.5 years old.

8.Making of Onam Cards:

Sending homemade simple cards to your loved ones to wish them a happy Onam will make them joyful. Draw a kathakali mask on the card and write a message on the back. 

 

 

 

9.Making of Paper Quilling Boat:

Apart from pookalam or kathakali face crafts, there were other crafts to enhance the festive spirit. Here is one more craft paper quilling boat with flowers to bring up the festive spirit.

 

 

 

Click on the below video to watch the onam craft ideas for kids

 

We loved our Onam theme, learned a lot & the fun thing was my son trying to pronounce all the Malayali words such as Nettipattom, Vallam kali, etc. We built our vocabulary in a different language. I hope you guys have lots of fun doing Onam craft & worksheets. If you have any queries please do comment. Don’t forget to share your fun with us. Happy Onam Everyone!!

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