Kids and their unique perspectives of life are the center focus on Hooray for Kids Day, held annually on August 4. The founders of this day, who remain unknown, likely wanted everyone — adults included — to share in the joy, innocence, and love children bring into the world. They’re unafraid, don’t know how to hate, find joy in the little things, and display curiosity that can rival a cat’s — which is why this day encourages everyone to say a loud ‘hurray!’ for every kid in your life and the world.
History of Hooray for Kids Day
Children have been revered and even worshiped throughout history, but did you know that kids were once — legally — thought of as mini-adults? The notion that children could have a separate identity or be deserving of a special set of rights was nonexistent in Medieval Europe and other parts of the world. While babies were cherished, common law dictated that for the most part, they are to be treated as adults.
This image changed by the 1600s with the rise of the middle class. This new family unit grew all over the world, especially in countries like Holland and England, and with it, a new notion of ‘childhood.’ Not only were children’s rights a hot topic in this period, but people also developed new theories about child-rearing. Of particular importance was John Locke’s “An Essay Concerning Human Understanding,” which described children’s minds as ‘blank slates’ that are then filled in by the different sensory experiences children begin to have as soon as they are born.
Seventeenth-century books and thinkers took a more romantic approach to childhood, believing it to be a brief period of relative safety and calmness before the hardships of adulthood. In this century and the next, Locke’s theories gained more ground and favor among thinkers and educationists. Multiple children’s textbooks were developed based on his theories — which meant they contained child-appropriate text and images, and were easier to understand — and many games, novellas, stories, and poems were aimed especially at this young audience.
However, the growing industrialization and population growth pushed a lot of people into poverty, which meant more and more kids in the workplace. Child labor was common even before these times, but children in factories and mines were exposed to dangerous working conditions and exploitative practices.
The contradiction between child labor conditions and the image of childhood as portrayed by many major educationists clashed, and this led to the first fights for the legal protection of children. Children were gradually required to compulsorily attend school, effectively removing them from the workplace. Dolls, action figures, and other kids’ toys were now mass-produced, further imprinting childhood as a fun and playful time for kids.
The modern concept of children and childhood was adopted by countries worldwide as they modernized. Today, children are seen for what they are — beautiful, innocent souls filled with joy, laughter, and a little bit of mischief.
Hooray for Kids Day timeline
Thomas Hughes bases a book — “Tom Brown's School Days” — on his own experiences in an English public school, and the book brings widespread attention to stories written about schools.
Lewis Caroll publishes “Alice in Wonderland,” and the children's story genre in England and Europe shifts to a more imaginative, creative, and empathetic writing style.
Roald Dahl, Lemony Snicket, J.K Rowling, and others deliver linguistically sophisticated stories that don't treat children like naïve beings, and movies such as “Mulan” and “Pocahontas” highlight more of the world’s diversified reality.
Birth rates rise at an unprecedented rate in developed countries after World War II and the people born at this time are called 'Baby boomers.'
Hooray for Kids Day FAQs
What is National Kid Day?
We haven’t found a celebration called National Kids’ Day, but we do know the world celebrates children on Universal Children’s Day every November 20.
Is June 1 Children's Day?
Some countries celebrate June 1 as International Children’s Day. In the U.S., Children’s Day is usually celebrated on the second Sunday in June.
Can a 13-year-old celebrate Children's Day?
People of all ages — teens included — can celebrate a children’s day event. All you have to do is embrace your inner kid and indulge in the emotions and feelings only childhood can inspire.
Hooray for Kids Day Activities
Celebrate the kids
Spend the day with kids — your own or others'. Indulge them in all their favorite activities, take them to special kid-friendly events, and most of all, don't forget to just sit and talk with them. The last one, more than anything else, makes them feel special and develops their voice.
Be a child for a day
Harking back to childhood is not always a bad thing. Embrace your inner kid and enjoy all the pastimes you ignore because people think they're childish. Remember to set some time aside every day to let the little kid inside you have his day.
Protect children's futures
If kids are to continue believing in the world and adults, we need to protect their dreams and the home they live in. Whether it is by advocating for children's rights, joining a children's advocacy organization, or volunteering at the local orphanage, there are plenty of ways you can do your part for the kids.
5 Incredible Facts About Kids And Their Early Years
Those early learning years are critical
Almost 90% of a child's brain is already developed by the time they turn six, which means their early education is very important.
Kids can't automatically read
This is because our brains only evolved to read around 5,000 years ago — right when the early writing symbols appeared — which is considered 'early' in evolutionary terms.
Baby talk is good for kids
The slow cadence, rhythm, and musical speech you use with babies help them understand the language even better, provided you are not saying gibberish, of course.
Kids can be ambidextrous
They use both hands until they start showing a preference, which usually happens anytime from 18 months to six years of age.
Brains are super flexible in early childhood
That's why young kids can play the piano, learn two or more languages, and practice basic math much faster than an older person.
Why We Love Hooray for Kids Day
Being a child is important
Adulthood comes with its share of joys, but the tradeoff means we lose out on our child-like beliefs and excitement over the little things. That's why Hooray for Kids Day helps us regain a little of our younger selves so we can feel as free as we did then.
We're celebrating the kids
It's in the title! We're celebrating the children in our lives, and how they encourage us to feel young ourselves.
We remember that children are our future
Going back to childhood and embracing that little kid inside us also revealed how vulnerable and dependent young kids are on the adults around them — a.k.a. us. This day inspires us to do more to shape a strong and safe world for all the little kids.
Hooray for Kids Day dates