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It is that wonderful time of year again for the Baha’is, a time called Ayyam-i-Ha (pronounced: Ah-YAHM-ee-hah). It is a time for celebration, service, gift giving, generosity and fellowship.

This year we added a new tradition to our Ayyam-i-Ha celebrations: a Virtues Tree.

For 19 days before Ayyam-i-Ha begins the children pick a note, a leaf and a small gift (such as a sticker) out of our countdown calendar.

Each day, the note says something different. They are all related to the virtues, the spiritual qualities that we want our children to develop, and they ask the children to think of a time when they showed that virtue, write it down on their leaf and add it to the virtue tree.

For example:

“Ayyam-i-Ha is a time for generosity. Write down a time when you were generous and add your leaf to the tree.”

“Ayyam-i-Ha is a time for laughter. Write down a joke and add your leaf to the tree.”

“Ayyam-i-Ha is a time for creativity. Draw a picture on your leaf and add it to the tree.”

Some of the other virtues that we talked about were kindness, thankfulness, helpfulness, service, joy, patience, responsibility, unity, love, friendliness and gratitude.

First I drew an outline of a tree on a large piece of paper, taped it to the fridge and then had the children color it in.

Then we taped a leaf on to the tree each day.

Now we are celebrating out five days of Ayyam-i-Ha. These are some of the other activities that we do.

Happy Ayyam-i-Ha!

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