Photo: Cavan Images (Getty Images)
When you think of Pride month, colorful images of rainbows, parades and parties likely come to mind as the month of June is a time for the LGBTQ community to celebrate the freedom to be themselves. It is also a time to honor gay, lesbian and transgender activists who made these celebrations possible by fighting for LGBTQ rights – especially through Events like the Stonewall Inn riots.
For families, the month offers several opportunities to talk to our children about the core values of inclusion that the LGBTQ community stands for – and to celebrate them.
Talk about what it means to identify yourself as LGBTQ
If you haven’t started yet talk to your kids About the problems people face in the LGBTQ community, now is the time – or the time to build on discussions that have already been held. (Here’s a primer to get you started.) This video of the National Center for Transgender Equality provides transgender kids and adults to talk about their experiences, and it’s a great way for kids to connect the concept with real people they can relate to.
You can read children’s books on the topic together, such as Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag; Stonewall: One building, one insurrection, one revolution; and Me and my two mothers. You can stop by too this list of TV shows featuring LGBTQ characters, courtesy of Common Sense Media.
Look for local Pride events
Last year we had to celebrate almost everything, including Pride month, either privately or socially. This year, if you are vaccinated or if you take all the safety precautions we are now so familiar with, you can celebrate in the community. Look for local Pride parades, festivals, 5K runs, or drag shows and take the kids with you.
G / O Media can receive a commission
Your city may also have local LGBTQ-owned or LGBTQ-friendly businesses on their website for you to support this month (and every month).
Go to a drag queen story hour
We have recommended in the past that you take your kids to a local Drag Queen Story Hour, and we recommend it again:
Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH) is exactly what it sounds like – drag queens reading stories to children in libraries, schools, and bookstores. DQSH captures the fantasy and play of the sexual fluidity of childhood and gives children glamorous, positive and unabashedly queer role models. In spaces like this, children can see people defying rigid gender restrictions and envisioning a world where people can present themselves the way they want, where clothing feels real.
You can Find an event near you here (or organize yourself).
Have your own Pride celebration
Dedicate a whole day (or a whole weekend!) To your very own Pride family celebration. Organize a neighborhood “Rainbow chalk hike“- or walk down your street and draw your own rainbows as you walk for others to discover. Create a neighborhood “Rainbow Scavenger Hunt“Where neighborhood kids decorate their windows or courtyards with rainbows that everyone can find. Or have a block party where everyone brings rainbow-themed food and drink (Rainbow crispy treats, someone?).
Encourage rainbow-themed crafts like this one Pride flag or Rainbow bracelet. Draw rainbows on the windows of your house or vehicle with vehicle dry erase markers. If you want to honor and support a specific family member or loved one this month, have the children make a special card or picture of it.
Make it an extra colorful and fun day out while talking about the history of the celebrations and the importance of inclusivity.
This article was originally published in 2020 and was updated on June 3, 2021 to provide current information.