Celebrating Ostara with Kids is a great way to connect with nature and welcome spring into your home. Explore the beauty of this season through simple and fun DIY projects. that reflect the theme and spirit of spring.
The Spring Equinox is a very special time of year. It marks the arrival of Spring in the Wheel of the Year, a cycle of seasonal festivals that honours the rhythms of nature and the changes of the seasons. The Spring Equinox typically falls on September 21st in the Southern Hemisphere and March 21st in the Northern Hemisphere. It’s also known as the Vernal Equinox, which means it’s midway between the winter solstice and summer solstice.
On the Spring Equinox, day and night are equal in length, creating a balance of light and dark. It’s a time of renewal, inspiration and enthusiasm, as we feel the surge of new energy that comes with the warmer weather and longer days. This is a great time for spring cleaning, to start new projects, set new goals, and pursue our passions.
We can also tap into the fertility and new life abundant in the natural world, as we witness the blossoming of flowers, the hatching of eggs, and the birth of animals. The Spring Equinox is a celebration of life and a reminder that we are part of this beautiful cycle.
Today I’d love to share with you some ideas on embracing the energy of spring and ways to celebrate Ostara (the ancient name of the spring equinox) with your kids. As a mama to a toddler, I love to have a couple of creative activities planned for the week. This week we’re decorating our home with spring flowers, making some delicious seasonal treats, and doing some simple fun crafts and activities.
Learning About the Origins of Ostara for Older Kids
One of the ways to celebrate Ostara is to learn more about its history and origins. Ostara is the name of the Germanic goddess of spring, who, in ancient times, was associated with the dawn, fertility, and renewal. She was also the source of the name for the Anglo-Saxon goddess Eostre, who was worshipped in April and some scholars believe gave rise to many of the elements of the Christian celebration of Easter.
The Christian celebration of Easter is also linked to the Spring Equinox, as it commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ after his crucifixion. Easter is determined by a complex calculation that involves the lunar cycle and the Spring Equinox. The first Sunday after the first full moon that occurs on or after March 21st (the fixed date for the northern hemisphere Spring Equinox in the Gregorian calendar) is Easter Sunday. Christian Easter is a celebration of hope, faith, and new life in Christ.
Whether you celebrate Ostara as a pagan holiday, a way to welcome the beginning of spring or Easter as a Christian holiday if you’re in the northern hemisphere, you can appreciate the significance of the Spring Equinox as a time of rebirth, transformation and renewal of life.
This post contains some affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no extra cost to you.
Celebrating Ostara with 9 Beautiful Activities
Nature Walk and Scavenger Hunt
Take a walk around your neighbourhood, park, bushland or forest, and look for signs of spring. You can look for spring flowers, bees and butterflies, worms, snails, and baby animals. You can also make it a scavenger hunt by using a printable guide that lists different things to find and check off. I love this one from The Little Oak Learning that you can download for free.
Create a Nature Table
When you come back from your walk, you can create a nature table with the spring treasures you found along the way. A nature table is a small display of natural objects that reflect the season. You can use a tray, a basket, a shelf, or any other surface to arrange your findings. You can also add some other symbols of Ostara such as white candles, bunnies, a rose quartz crystal, figurines, or other decorations you like.
Make Flower Shortbread
One of the best things about spring is the abundance of edible flowers that you can use to make delicious treats. One of my favourites is flower shortbread, which is a simple buttery biscuit that you can top with fresh edible flowers. You can use any edible flowers you have in your garden or find on your walk, such as lavender, borage, rose, calendula, chamomile, or violets. You want to ensure the batter is nice and soft so that the flowers will “stick”.
Reading and Learning Activities for Celebrating Ostara
Read Spring-Themed Books
Some of my favourite spring-themed books are “Spring” by Gerda Muller, “Little Witch Hazel” by Phoebe Wahl and “The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s First Spring” by Eric Carle.
“Spring” is a beautiful wordless picture book that shows the changes in nature and the activities of children in spring. It’s perfect for toddlers and preschoolers who can make up their own stories based on the illustrations.
“Little Witch Hazel” is a gorgeous book containing four seasonal stories about a little herbalist witch who lives in the forest and helps the animals and plants around her. It’s also suitable for older kids who can appreciate the magical elements and the lovely messages of kindness and friendship. I’m obsessed with all of Phoebe Wahl’s books!
“The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s First Spring” is a spin-off of the classic “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and follows the caterpillar as he explores the wonders of spring for the first time. This book is ideal for babies and toddlers who can enjoy colourful illustrations and a simple storyline.
JOIN MY NEWSLETTER TO RECEIVE…
Access to my subscriber library which includes free simple living printables resources.
Explore Montessori-Style Plant Care
Another way to celebrate Ostara is to learn about plants and how to care for them. I have learned so much from Montessori teacher and author, Simone Davis, who writes a wonderful blog, The Montessori Notebook. She has been very influential in the way I approach parenting (here are a growing number of blog posts on what that looks like in my home). She has also written two wonderful books: The Montessori Toddler and The Montessori Baby.
Simone has put together a series of tutorials for parents of toddlers on how you can – in Montessori style – teach your child to plant seeds, take care of house plants, water plants and (my favourite) do flower arranging. The activities are super easy to set up and will likely lead to some very engaged activity time.
Celebrating Ostara with Gardening and Crafts
Planting Seeds in an Eggshell and Watching Them Grow
You can also take the Montessori-style planting seeds tutorial and spin it into another creative activity: plant some seeds in an eggshell and watch them sprout and grow. Use any kind of seeds that are easy to grow, such as cress, grass, or alfalfa. You can also use either moistened cotton wool or soil as the growing medium. All you need to do is crack an egg carefully, empty the contents, rinse the shell, fill it with cotton wool or soil, sprinkle some seeds on top, give it regular water and place it in a sunny spot. You can then watch the seeds germinate and grow into green shoots. My toddler has LOVED this one.
Decorate Blossoming Branches with Hanging Eggs
Find some branches with flowers or buds on them, and collect a couple of them. Then using either real or artificial eggs that are painted or dyed in bright colours, hang the eggs from the branches using string, ribbon, or wire. Display the decorated branches in a vase or a pot, or hang them on a wall or a window. This is a beautiful way to bring some spring cheer into your home and amazing to watch the buds turn to blossoms and then to leaves.
Involve kids in Planting the Spring Garden
I love the Montessori approach of involving your kids (even tiny toddlers) in practical daily life and this can include planting your spring garden! You’ll need appropriately sized garden tools, such as a shovel, a rake, a trowel, and a watering can. Involve them in the care of your garden, however, you like to do it.
You can also help them grow their own vegetables by setting up a potting station with some soil, a scoop, and some seeds. You can choose any vegetables that are suitable for spring planting and easy to grow, such as:
- Silverbeet/rainbow chard
- Spring onions
I’ll admit, it’s a bit chaotic, and seedlings do get trampled, but the look of fascination on Massimo’s face when he can see what we planted is growing makes the chaos entirely worthwhile!
Make Sun Catchers with Pressed Flowers
Making sun catchers with pressed flowers is the quintessential craft for celebrating Ostara! Suncatchers are gorgeous decorations that capture the sunlight and create rainbow reflections. They are also simple and fun to craft with your children. You only need some:
- Craft glue
- A sheet or two of clear perspex
- An embroidery hoop (or even just some cardboard to create a frame)
- Blutac or sellotape
- String or ribbon.
To make the sun catchers, you can follow these steps:
- Press your flowers using a book or a flower press. You can use any flowers you like, such as lavender, rose, daisy, or pansy.
- Glue your pressed flowers on the perspex sheet. You can arrange them in any pattern or design you like. Let the glue dry completely.
- Cut out the perspex sheet to fit the shape of your embroidery hoop or cardboard frame. You can use scissors or a craft knife for this.
- Attach the perspex sheet to the hoop or frame using blutac or sellotape. Make sure it is secure and smooth.
- Tie some string or ribbon to the top of the hoop or frame. You can also add some beads or bells for extra charm.
- Hang your sun catcher in a window that catches the light and enjoy the beautiful display.
Celebrating Ostara as a Time of New Beginnings
Ostara is the perfect time of the year to awaken from the winter slumber and embrace the new life and energy that surrounds us. As you can see, there are many different ways of celebrating Ostara with your children and honouring the coming of spring.
As a parent, Ostara is also a good time to reflect on your own personal growth and goals for the coming months. You can use this time of new beginnings to set intentions, plant (metaphorical) seeds of change, or start new projects.
Whatever you do, I hope you have a happy Ostara and enjoy the beauty and magic of this season. Remember that you are part of nature and nature is part of you.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Happy Ostara!