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Generations United Grandparents Day Website

Visit the Generations United Grandparents Day website to find more resources, ideas, and information for intergenerational social action. Generation United's Take Action Guide provides you with the tools to Do Something Grand in your community!

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Share the heartwarming bestseller A Little Something about love and legacies across generations and get reading tips

Download now: Illustration Slides to use with A Little Something

Share the inspirational bestseller Dream: A Tale of Wonder, Wisdom & Wishes told by a wise old star grandparent/mentor and get reading tips plus great intergenerational activity ideas

Download now: Illustration Slides to use with Dream

Get free online Across Generations activities and guides

Children and teens can interview a grandparent or grandfriend to enter the Legacy Project's annual Listen to a Life Essay Contest

Create an intergenerational Share the Dream video

Grandparents: Create a Life Statement and share what matters with other generations

Find out more about the Legacy Project's Across Generations program

National Grandparents Day event planning guide from the Legacy Project has hundreds of ideas and activities. Create your own intergenerational event. Grandparents Day school events at any time of the year bring grandparents and grandchildren closer. Get a complete planning guide and free activities for a special Grandparents Day event for grandparents and grandchildren in your school. Make Grandparents Day a special day in your school to celebrate the important bonds between grandparents and grandchildren with these free activities. The source for the best Grandparents Day ideas, lesson plans, and activities from across the country. Children love celebrating Grandparents Day and feel special when grandparents come to visit their school during a Grandparents Day or Intergenerational Day event. Celebrate grandparents on National Grandparents Day or at any time through the year.

 

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A Little Something

Grandparents Day read-aloud – a heartwarming story about love and legacies across generations.
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Dream

Grandparents Day read-aloud – an inspiring story about hopes and dreams across a lifetime told by a wise old star.
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by Susan V. Bosak
Legacy Project Chair

Intergenerational events bring young and old together to celebrate the value of all generations

Welcome to the largest and most comprehensive online source of free ideas and activities for
a Grandparents Day event at any time of the year. It's part of
the Legacy Project's Across Generations program. This easy-to-use guide is the result of over a decade of intergenerational work with programs and schools across the country.

 




 

There are more grandparents today than ever before. By the year 2030, 1 in every 5 Americans will be over 65 years of age. For the first time in history, and probably for the rest of human history, people age 65 and older will outnumber children under age five.

This demographic shift creates the potential for rich intergenerational connections across seven or more generations: your own generation, three generations before you – parents, grandparents, great-grandparents – and three generations after you – children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. This is your chance to do something big, something grand!

The Legacy Project's Grandparents Day Planning & Activity Guide covers everything from the history of National Grandparents Day to different models for running a successful intergenerational event to over 200 great activities, like Then & Now fill-in sheets, Storytelling ideas, Family Tree charts, a Fill-in-the-Blanks Life Story booklet and Generations Scrapbook, Greatest Grandparent/Grandfriend certificates, and much more.

Grandparents Day is an officially-recognized national holiday in the US that falls each year on the first Sunday after Labor Day. But increasingly, schools and community groups are also organizing Grandparents Day (or Intergenerational Day) events at any time during the year as a way to bring together families and build community. Children have an opportunity to show their appreciation and love toward their grandparents (and other special older adult friends), and grandparents feel valued as their role is validated. These events can also be a steppingstone for creating long-term intergenerational programs and connections.

A Grandparents Day event can involve both biological grandparents and "grandfriends" or other older adult mentors. It's a celebration of the value of all generations and the special relationships between them. Your event can include both one-on-one and group activities.

This guide is directed primarily at schools, but the ideas can also be used by community and seniors groups.


Goals and Benefits

As you're planning your Grandparents Day event, keep these goals and benefits in mind:

 
  • Give children an opportunity to show their appreciation and love for their grandparents, and other significant older people in their lives.

  • Give grandparents an opportunity to show their love and caring for their grandchildren, as well as other children in their community.

  • Create "a memory" – an enjoyable, memorable experience for children and their grandparents.

  • Honor older adults and give them validation in their role of grandparent (or "grandfriend" or mentor). Grandparents need to know that they are making a difference in the lives of younger generations.

  • Give older adults a chance to share some of their life experiences with their own grandchildren and other children, and expose children to the information and guidance older people can offer. Older people want to make a difference in the lives of those that follow. A sense of legacy is a basic human need.

  • Make children and adults – especially parents and teachers – aware of the strengths of older people, and confront some of the stereotypes we often hold toward aging and older adulthood.

  • Encourage and support long-term, mutually-supportive, caring intergenerational relationships. Grandparents will appreciate any concrete ideas and resources you provide to help them build and maintain a connection with the young.

  • Give grandparents an opportunity to see firsthand what children are doing in today's schools and meet the teachers. The education system has to be made real and relevant to older adults.

  • Foster community relations and boost family involvement in schools. Children whose families – parents and grandparents – are involved in their education learn better. Schools get much needed additional support.

  • Encourage older adults to fulfill a social role and responsibility by volunteering in schools and acting as mentors, which benefits children and can transform a beleaguered education system.

  • By doing activities leading up to and then after the event, expose children to new ideas from a historical, multigenerational, and life course perspective.

  • Create a community that remembers its history as it builds its future. Young and old can find wisdom and inspiration in each other.


A Grandparents Day event is an opportunity. We divide up our communities and our activities by age – young people in schools, older people in retirement communities or facilities. We talk a lot about all the ways we need to "help" older people. But, perhaps, the old can help us. It's the experience of life in a multigenerational, interdependent, richly complex community that, more than anything else, teaches us how to be human.

We are a culture that values the "new" and "youth." If we can improve the standing of older adults in society, and nurture what they can bring through intergenerational connections, then we can achieve a better community with a better quality of life for all ages.

Young and old together can exist in a moment of time that's the grand sum of past, present, and future. Rather than time being the enemy – rushing time or stressing to fit as much into time as possible – time becomes a comfortable companion, a circle rather than a line. Young and old together complete the grand circle of life.

So, start planning your event!

© SV Bosak, www.legacyproject.org

 

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Across Generations

Get planning ideas for a Grandparents Day or intergenerational event at any time of the year. There are hundreds of free online Across Generations activities. And you can find out more about the Legacy Project's Across Generations program, including our annual Listen to a Life Essay Contest and Life Statements.

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