What novelty it is to have an “extra” day this year! I always love when the clocks “fall back” and we get that extra hour long day–imagine 24 hours of extra time!
Of course, February 29th isn’t an “extra” day because schools and businesses will be in session, children will expect to be fed and shuttled, laundry will accumulate and bills will arrive. But just imagine for a moment that you were suddenly gifted a bonus day, totally empty, completely without responsibility (or repercussions). What would you do?!
Kiddos will be intrigued by the idea of February claiming an extra day. It’s a tough concept to get your mind around, but what an great opportunity to start some interesting conversations or generate some passionate writing!
And what about those February 29th birthdays? Did you know that a person born on that day is called a leapling or leaper? How old would you be if you calculated your age by leap year anniversaries? Ask kiddos if they were born on February 29, would they celebrate a day early or a day late? How might you celebrate your birthday when you had the opportunity to do it on the actual day? Personally, I’d plan a party based on my birthday anniversary age. This year I’d be…12, which suggests pizza, sundaes and a slumber party with top 40 blaring. Who’s in?!
Older students might be interested to hear that in the United States, February 29th is also Sadie Hawkins day which traditionally meant a role reversal where women ask the man for their hand in marriage. While that idea seems ridiculous today, there are still lots of traditional gender roles. Which do you find most in need of change?
Finally, the idea of leaping is often used in conjunction with taking a risk. Challenge your students, or yourself, to take a leap this Monday. Will you introduce yourself to someone new? Stand up for yourself? Sit at a different lunch table?
Planning something special for this unique day? Please share below!