Harmony Day Activities

Library Home  >  Arts, Crafts and Activity IdeasDiversity and Inclusion
  Published on Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Harmony Day Activities

Library Home  >  Arts, Crafts and Activity IdeasDiversity and Inclusion
  Published on Tuesday, 19 March 2019

Harmony Day, this Thursday March 21, is an Australian Government initiative celebrating the successful integration of migrants into our community and reinforcing the importance of inclusiveness to all Australians.

Started in 1999, to coincide with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Harmony Day is marked by people coming together all over the country and participating in local activities.

Schools, pre-schools and child care facilities hold all sorts of Harmony Day activities and children are encouraged to wear orange clothing and/or the distinctive orange ribbon.

The theme for Harmony Day 2019 is "Everyone Belongs", which is about inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging for everyone.

Get involved

It's not too late to organise an event or an activity to celebrate Harmony Day, on the actual day and on an ongoing basis:

Activities for Harmony Day

  • Wrap orange ribbons around classroom furniture, trees and play equipment.
  • Ask children to wear orange and/or brightly coloured clothes or a traditional outfit from their culture.
  • Turn your lunchtime meal orange with rockmelon, mandarins, carrots, orange cheese, curried chicken and whatever else you can think of.
  • Encourage families to send in an interesting cultural dish to share and have a Harmony Day picnic.
  • Plant a harmony tree or plant to celebrate the diversity in your service.
  • Read poems and stories, play games and listen to music which reflects the cultural diversity of the children in your service.
  • Offer children the opportunity to draw paintings and create art which reflects their understanding of diversity.
  • Listen to music from a range of countries and ask children to paint what they hear with different colours and brushstrokes.
  • Give children the opportunity to dance to music from different countries.
  • Make a collage to celebrate the diversity of the families in your service using a variety of different materials.
  • Offer children the chance to mix paint to match the colour of their skin, hair and eyes and then paint a self-portrait.
  • Find a traditional song that is sung in a range of languages e.g. 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star'. Learn the song in another language.
  • Ask the children to bring in an object that is special to their family and talk about it.
  • Colour and make: Colour and create figures and locations to celebrate that everyone belongs.

Ongoing activities

  • Create a calendar of the various holidays and special days celebrated by the families in your service and mark these with a story, game or special food item.
  • Maintain a library of books which reflect the cultural diversity of the families in your service
  • Offer children the opportunity to listen to music from a variety of cultures and the chance to learn basic vocabulary from the community languages in your area.
  • Learn more about Indigenous owners of your region – find out about their culture online or ask an elder to visit your service and speak to the children.

These ideas and plenty more are available on the Australian Government's Harmony Day website.

This child care article was last reviewed or updated on Monday, 30 December 2019