I work at a preschool in Sewanee Tennessee and our preschool holds a Mardi Gras parade that the elementary kids can come see. Each of our classrooms at the preschool has a different theme. For instance the 4’s are a barrel of monkeys, the 3’s are the tiny mice, and the 2’s are jesters. We have wagons to assist.
We use Mardi Gras beads to create shapes. Just give each child a Mardi Gras bead and ask them to see what shapes they can create or ask them to create a particular shape. We also made a class book called: A Mardi Gras Book of Shapes. (We took pictures of the shapes that were created. You could also have the students draw pictures of the shapes.)
On “Fat Tuesday” during Mardi Gras, we decorate the hallway with mardi gras colored streamers, balloons, and curly ribbon hanging from the ceiling, and we cover the floor with confetti. We make crowns and masks with the kids and then we go into the hallway, turn up the jazz music and dance til our hearts are content! The kids love to do this! And though they may not understand the meaning behind Mardi Gras, they do understand that it’s a day to PARTY!
We hold an annual Mardi Gras parade at school. Both regular and special education students participate. The parade is held for the students and parents of our elementary school. Parents are asked to donate old beads or other throws (doubloons). We select a king and queen and dress all the students in homemade costumes. If students are in wheelchairs we decorate the wheelchairs or wagons. If the parade is held outdoors the students can decorate and ride tricycles. We play traditional Mardi Gras music during he parade. The last few years we have held the parade in the auditorium. One time we had someone who had been part of a Mardi Gras ball to come and show the students the costume that had been worn. Our students have a great time putting on this annual event. we also take pictures and put then in a photo album for the students to enjoy.