PAAIA Creates New Nowruz Project Resources for Iranian American Families

Do you have a child in elementary school who  wants to share information about Nowruz with his classmates? Are you a parent who is interested in celebrating our New Year with your child’s classmates, teachers, and school staff?

PAAIA has the resources for you!

With the coming New Year, PAAIA is again providing a new set of resources for Iranian American families and parents wishing to reach out to elementary schools and provide them with information about Nowruz. With the Nowruz Project resources, parents and children can provide information on our ancient culture, help build the Iranian American presence and image in the communities in which we live, and give a new generation of Iranian Americans pride in their heritage.

This year’s Nowruz Project resources include a new PDF presentation which provides an overview of Iran, including its location, geography, and people. The presentation also provides information on the Persian language, the different religions practiced  in Iran, and contains numerous pages devoted to Nowruz, including information on Charshanbeh Soori, the Haft Seen, and Sizdeh Bedar. The presentation can be provided to students as a handout or displayed on an overhead projector.

Other resources include new coloring pages for elementary school students, a Nowruz word scramble, a Nowruz word search, and a name translation page, that parents can use to write out children’s names in Persian.

“The story of the Nowruz Project is rather simple,” explained Saghi Modjtabai, PAAIA’s Executive Director. “When my older son was in kindergarten, we were discussing holidays as part of his classroom work one day. I realized that, though the teacher covered Christmas and the Jewish holidays, there really was no mention or knowledge of Nowruz.”  For the next five years, Modjtabai would compile a variety of materials, including haft seen items, pictures of Iran, Persian music and sweets, and a variety of crafts, and take them to her son’s school to educate the teachers, students, and parents.

“By fifth grade, every single student in my son’s class knew exactly what Nowruz was and how we celebrated it,” she said. “It was during that time that I realized that there were many other Iranian American families similarly anxious to share our culture and heritage with their children, teachers, and classmates.” PAAIA agreed to assist in developing and making materials available to the Iranian American community, and thus the Nowruz Project was born.

Click here to read more about the Nowruz Project and download the resources for your family this Nowruz season.

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