For many Pagans and Wiccans, it's hard to find kid-friendly activities that celebrate our spiritual path. Believe it or not, sharing your beliefs with your kids is easier than you think. After all, you're the parent, so you can lead by example. Show your children what you do, and they'll emulate you in their own way. Teaching by doing is the key. By living a Pagan life, you'll show your kids what it means to be Pagan or Wiccan or whatever your family's path is.
These very simple activities are easy enough that you can do them with nearly any child, so have fun with them!
1. Make a Wand
What's not to love about making your own wand? Take your kids out in the woods for a nature walk, and ask them to keep an eye on the ground for the "right" stick. The wand should be about the same length as the child's forearm. Once your child has a stick, bring it home and decorate it with flowers, ribbons, glitter, even crystals. Hold a consecration ceremony so your child can claim the wand as his or her own.
Everyone likes to drum, and the louder the better. If you don't have a professional drum, don't worry -- that's why the gods made coffee cans. Let your kids experiment with containers of different sizes and shapes, and see which ones make the most interesting sounds. Fill an empty water bottle with dried beans to make an impromptu rattle. Two thick dowels tapped together make a percussion instrument as well. Have a family drum circle night, and let everyone bang away to raise energy.
Sure, the idea of teaching a toddler to meditate sounds crazy, but you'd be surprised what kids can do if they're interested. Even if it's just two minutes lying in the grass looking at trees, it's not a bad idea to start your youngsters meditating early. By the time they get to be adults with stressful lives, meditation will be second nature to them. Use breathing as a way of teaching counting to small children. Elementary-school age kids can usually handle a ten- to fifteen-minute guided meditation.
If you have a family altar, that's great! Encourage your kids to have an altar of their own in their bedrooms -- this is the place they can put all the things that are special to them. While you may not want a tribe of Ninja Turtles on your family altar, if your son says they're his Personal Guardians, give him his own place to put them! Add to the collection with interesting things your child finds on nature walks, shells from trips to the beach, family photos, etc. Be sure that young children don't have candles or incense on their altar.
5. Moon Crafts
Kids love the moon, and they love to wave at it and say hello to it (my oldest claimed the moon as her own when she was five). If your family does any sort of moon rituals, such as an Esbat Rite or New Moon ceremony, have the kids decorate a mirror with lunar symbols, or make a Moon Braid to hang in a window, and use it on your altar during family moon celebrations. Bake a batch of Moon Cookies to use during Cakes & Ale ceremonies.
6. God's Eyes
These are an easy decoration to make and can be adapted seasonally, simply by using different colors. All you need is a pair of sticks and some yarn or ribbon. Make a God's Eye in yellows or reds for solar celebrations, green and brown for an earth ceremony, or in the colors of your family's household deities. Hang them on a wall or place on an altar.
Salt dough is one of the easiest things in the world to make, and you can create just about anything from it. You can follow our easy Salt Dough recipe, and use it with cookie cutters to make your own Sabbat ornaments. After your ornaments have cooled, paint them and decorate with your favorite Pagan and Wiccan symbols.
After you've painted them, seal them with clear varnish. If you're planning to hang them, poke a hole through the ornament BEFORE baking them. Then after you've varnished them, run a ribbon or thread through the hole.
8. Wheel of the Year Journal
Get your child a blank notebook, and have them keep track of the patterns of nature. Note the dates that the first buds appear in spring, when birds begin to migrate, and when the weather changes. If your child is old enough to surf the Internet, have him predict the weather for the next few days and then compare it to your local weather forecast -- and then see who's right! As the Wheel of the Year turns, your child can help you prepare for upcoming Sabbat celebrations.
9. Mythic Tales
Many parents aren't really sure how to incorporate their Pagan beliefs into their children's upbringing, so story time is a great way to do this. Teach your child the myths and legends of your pantheon. Storytelling is an age-old tradition, so why not use it to educate your kids about what you believe? Tell them tales of gods and heroes, fairies, and even your own ancestors.
10. Singing and Chanting
There are a ton of great songs out there for Pagan kids, and most of them are really simple. You can make up your own with some simple rhymes and a little bit of ingenuity. Clap your hands, stomp your feet, and celebrate the gifts of the earth. If you want to find pre-recorded music for your kids, read some of the Pagan and Wiccan magazines; there are nearly always ads for Pagan musicians and their work.