Mardi Gras and Masquerade Ideas for Your Classroom

Mardi Gras is just around the corner and if you study different holidays or the settlement of the United States, it’s the perfect reason to have a mini Mardi Gras celebration. You may also have a Mardi Gras celebration if you’ve been teaching your students French. (Mardi Gras means Fat Tuesday in English.)

Discuss the following leading up to your celebration:
• French settlement of New Orleans after the Civil War.
• Mardi Gras as a celebration of the “new year”
• First Mardi Gras celebration
• Today’s traditions: parties, multiple parades, etc.

When you have everything established and everyone has a good background for the “holiday”, kick back and celebrate!

For the perfect Mardi Gras classroom celebration, try the following:
• Order Mardi Gras masks for each of your students or have them create their own and hold a secret vote as to whose is the best.
• Use Mardi Gras decorations like the mystique mask door curtain and mask danglers to decorate your room.
• Purchase Mardi Gras favors for each student to take home and remember their celebration.
• Add a Jester standee as a photo booth that will make fine keepsakes for your students.
• You may even be adventurous and have groups of students make their own mini floats and hold a parade in your school.
• Don’t break the bank for your celebration. Shindigz has discount Mardi Gras supplies from which to choose.
• Let your students help you out with the food. They could research traditional French, Mardi Gras, or New Orleans food and each bring a dish to share with the class.

Even if you can’t tie in Mardi Gras to your Social Studies units, think about using Mardi Gras supplies for a masquerade ball or for a piece of literature such as The Phantom of the Opera. It’s always best to put yourself in your students’ shoes and think about what they want out of their studies. Reward their hard work on a literature unit with a theme party or have them put on a Reader’s Theatre for the novel you’ve read. Feather masks are perfect for the girls, and metallic masks work well for the boys.

No matter the reason to celebrate, your students are sure to have a blast with Mardi Gras!

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