Ziua Copiilor (Children’s Day)

2nd grade students get ready to start off the day.

Here in Moldova, June 1st is both the first day of summer vacation from school and Children’s Day, which is celebrated as a main holiday.  Some towns have begun to celebrate Children’s Day on the last day of school once school has been released, but my village still celebrates it on June 1st.

2nd grade students hand out butterfly pins to the teachers
Some of the teachers and students from my school
Doamna Maria and Doamna Galina receive butterfly pins
Doamna Maria and Doamna Feodora (my school director) show off their butterfly pins.
2nd grade students perform a song and dance

It’s a day of games, singing, dancing, and free ice cream for kids!  In my village, we celebrated at our park, which is fairly new (when I visited for my site visit last July, the “park” was just a wide open space, but now we have a large playground, swings, and even a small pavilion).

4th grade students singing
Younger students from our village’s music and dance school perform
Traditional Moldovan dancing
Older students from the music and dance school perform

The day started by a performance by 2nd grade students and continued with various singing and dance performances, including some by our traditional music and dance school.

9th grade graduates perform a beautiful dance
9th grade graduates with Doamna Maria and Doamna Valentina, one of their homeroom teachers.

The last performance was by a group of graduating 9th grade students, who performed the same dance they did on the last day of school.

Me with two of my 9th grade students
Me with two of my 8th grade students

After the scheduled performances, there was an open mic competition for poetry and singing, as well as a chalk drawing competition.  These were judged by teachers from our school and there were several winners in each category, all of whom received some small prizes (balls, notebooks, drawing pads, and pens).

It was a beautiful day and most of the activities were set up in the shade.  I really enjoyed the day and it was nice to see everyone enjoying the celebrations.

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