11 ways kids can take part in the presidential inauguration

If kids were actually going to school, they'd have spent the day watching Wednesday's inauguration of President Joe Biden on television -- and getting a civics lesson or two.

But in the pandemic, most of them are learning remotely. What's a parent to do?

It was an Inauguration Day so full of possibilities, not just for the change in politics and tone, but for the groundbreaking moment of Kamala Harris -- the daughter of Indian and Jamaican parents -- now the second most powerful person in the US government.

"We finally get to have a Black woman as vice president," fifth grader Larissa Millburn said.

The student at PS 399 in New York City's Flatbush section of Brooklyn woke up excited. In the fall, her school celebrated Harris with a poem that went viral.

Twelve-year-old Jalyn Robinson is a Girl Scout and future politician, and she knows how profound it all was.

"It's really exciting to see that things can actually change and that we've reached the point where we can have a woman vice president," she said.

Madame Vice President was sworn in by Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina Supreme Court justice. And diversity was on display during the ceremony, as Jennifer Lopez took some time to sing in Spanish.

There are several fun and educational ways to get your kids involved in this important American government ritual that only happens every four years, and most of these options go beyond watching the star-studded inauguration festivities on TV.

Write a letter to the Veep: Ask your kids to tell Vice President Kamala Harris what her historic election means to them. They can email the letters, along with their name and hometown, to letters@bideninaugural.org or post them online with the hashtag #LetterstoKamala.

Watch a livestream curated just for youths: "Our White House: An Inaugural Celebration for Young Americans," livestreamed at 10 a.m. Wednesday and featured segments from the Library of Congress, trivia and fun facts.

Share your story: Watch videos kids have posted in which they voice their vision for the country or explain why giving back is important, or create your own.

Make a cameo: Share your vision for America using eight words or less, upload the video, and you could show up in the inauguration festivities.

Write your own inaugural address: This guide from Scholastic can help.

Design your own Oval Office: If you want to get really art-and-crafty, Crayola has directions on how you and your kids can design the most important office in the land.

Test your knowledge of presidential pets: This quiz has different questions for different grade levels.

Play inauguration bingo: Check out options for inauguration bingo here or create your own bingo cards.

Design an inauguration parade float: This guide has ideas on how to build mini-floats from boxes and other materials or just draw a picture of your float.

Play inauguration trivia: For example, who gave the shortest inaugural address? That'd be George Washington in 1793, who spoke only 135 words.



Read about how government works: These children's books help explain our political process and democratic system. They include "When you Grow up to Vote," by Eleanor Roosevelt.