Remember, Remember! The 5th November – with less bangs and more sparkles
The last week of October really is a week of scary celebrations – once the ghosts and ghouls of Halloween have gone back to the graveyards then it’s time for the sparkles and bangs of bonfire night.
This British tradition has been celebrated for over 400 years and remembers Guy Fawkes failed attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1605 – but for kids it can be terrifying – follow these tips for a family friendly celebration with this year:
Add a sparkle to your evening
My four year old daughter still hides under her duvet clutching her teddy on bonfire night but she loves a sparkler – the glow gives a similar experience to a firework but without the loud bang. Just make sure that all children are closely supervised and always remember to follow Rospa safety guidelines. You can also light a bonfire in the garden using a few bits of leftover wood – keeping children at a distance. Glow sticks are also brilliant on bonfire night – they are safe and kids love them, plus if you go to a big bonfire night your little ones will be easier to spot in the crowds.
Image by Ideal Home
Create a rocket
Trawl through the internet and you’ll find loads of brilliant crafts that you can do with the kids pre bonfire night. This one is really easy and even the tiniest of hands can do it. All you have to do is cut a rectangle out of a piece of black card, use a different coloured piece of card to create a triangle for the top, then sellotape a lollipop stick to the back. Stick some star stickers to the front and decorate with glitter, stickers and paint. These are great to whirl around on the big day and can be simply used as a bookmark afterwards.
Make a Guy Fawkes
You could also try making a Guy Fawkes – it’s brilliant fun for kids and a tradition that has been passed down through generations. All you need is some paper mache (make the glue with ¾ PVA glue and ¼ water). Take a balloon and cover it in three layers of paper and glue. Once the paper mache is dry, stick a pin in it and pop the balloon – then draw on a face and fill the head with straw. Get an old shirt and trousers, tie string around the legs and stuff with newspaper. Then fasten the shirt to the trousers with a belt and attach the head with sticks and string. Just don’t let the kids get too attached to their new creation as soon he will be thrown on a fire.
Image by Hendred
Kids love a bonfire treat and these toffee apples are delicious – there are lots of hot things involved so adult supervision is key. Put apples in a bowl and cover with boiling water to remove waxy residue and help the toffee to stick. Push wooden skewers into the top of the apple. Then make your own toffee by combining 300g of caster sugar with 3 tablespoons of golden syrup and 5 tablespoons of water. Swirl the water around so it covers the sugar but do not stir, heat over a low heat. Once the sugar has melted then turn up the heat until it reaches 140 degrees – remember, do not stir. Quickly dip each apple into the caramel, decorate with whatever you want – nuts, hundreds and thousands or pretty iced stars and leave to set.
Image by Sainsburys
Learn about Guy Fawkes
Lots of younger kids don’t know why we celebrate bonfire night yet but you can teach them the bonfire night song – Remember, Remember! The fifth of November. The Gunpowder treason and plot, I know of no reason , Why the Gunpowder treason, Should ever be forgot! For children who are still too young, you can bring some magic to the big day at bedtime with this lovely book about Harry the Hedgehog and his experience on bonfire night. By Deborah Webb – find it on Amazon.co.uk for £6.99.
Image by Amazon