We’ve been talking about our birthdays recently and one of the girls in our class happened to turn 4 that week. We celebrate birthdays in our class with a shared cake or treat brought in by the parents, the wearing of the birthday hat (eBay purchase) and the presenting of a birthday certificate. The birthday child sits in the middle of the mat while the rest of the class sits in a circle around them. We sing Happy Birthday from our Mickey Mouse Happy Birthday CD and then give the child 4 or 5 claps for how old they are and one for good luck. The children are either turning 4 in the first half of the year or turning 5 in the second half of the year.
We adapted this idea to make individual birthday cake handprints to show when each of our birthdays were. We painted the palm of our hands brown to represent the chocolate cake, then either pink or blue on our fingers to represent the candles with some orange on the tips of our fingers to represent the flames. The children turning 4 had 4 fingers painted and the children turning 5 had 5 fingers painted. We’ve displayed these on our window under headings for each month of the year so we can easily see when each child’s birthday is and how many children are born in each month. This sparked questions such as “Which month has the most birthdays? Which has the least? Does any month have no birthdays?”