If you’re looking for September teaching ideas, you found the right place! The secret to teaching in September and keeping students engaged and learning is integrating holidays and special days into your instruction. There are so many holidays and special days in September to celebrate with your elementary students. Some of the more popular ones are Hispanic Heritage Month, Rosh Hashanah, Labor Day, Patriot Day, Grandparents Day, and International Dot Day. You’ll find the full list of September events, holidays, and special days teachers can celebrate and use as teaching ideas below!
September Holidays and Special Days
As you starting brainstorming September teaching ideas, add these September holidays and special days to your teacher planner.
- First Saturday in September, International Bacon Day
- 9/6 National Read a Book Day
- 9/8 International Literacy Day
- 9/9 National Teddy Bear Day
- 9/10 Mid-Autumn Festival
- First Sunday in September, Grandparents Day
- 9/13 National Celiac Awareness Day
- 2nd Thursday in September, National School Picture Day
- 9/15 International Dot Day
- 9/16 National Play-Doh Day
- 9/16 National Working Parents Day
- 9/19 International Talk Like a Pirate Day
- 9/21 International Day of Peace
- Date changes every year, September Equinox
- 9/22 Dear Diary Day
- 9/24 National Punctuation Day
- 9/25 National Lobster Day
- 9/25 National Daughters Day
- 9/26 Johnny Appleseed Day
- 9/26 National Pancake Day
- 9/27 National Chocolate Milk Day
- 9/28 National Good Neighbor Day
- 9/30 National Chewing Gum Day
- Mid-Autumn/Moon/Mooncake Festival, takes place on the 15th day of the 18th month of the Chinese calendar
- First Monday in September, Labor Day
- 9/11 Patriot Day
- 9/16 Mexican Independence Day
- 9/17 Constitution Day
- 9/25 Yom Kippur
- 9/30 Orange Shirt Day
Month-Long September Events
Below are month-long September events you can use as topics and themes for teaching ideas in September.
Hispanic Heritage Month Activities
Americans celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month during the month of September every year. This is a month dedicated to celebrating and recognizing all the important contributions in hispanic heritage and the incredible culture, history and accomplishments of Hispanic Americans for the United States. This is the perfect time to educate your students on hispanic heritage, culture and history to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Check out the related activities below!
Extended September Events
Below are extended September events you can use as topics and themes for teaching ideas in September.
Rosh Hashanah Activities
Rosh Hashanah is celebrated on a different date every year in September by people who are Jewish. This is a Jewish New Year Festival and marks the beginning of the ten days of penitence in Yom Kippur and the first of the Jewish holy days. This is the perfect day to explore religion and culture in your classroom and educate your students on this Jewish New Year Festival through videos, books and activities.
Below are September holidays you can use as topics and themes for teaching ideas in September.
Labor Day Activities
Americans celebrate Labor Day on the first Monday in September every year in the United States. On this day we recognize the American labor movement and an appreciation day for all the hard work people do in the United States. This is the perfect day to relax and enjoy your day off from work, while understanding and appreciating the history of this holiday.
Patriot Day (9/11) Activities
Patriot Day is celebrated on September 11th every year in the United States. This is a memorial day to remember all the people’s lives that were taken during the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. On this day, you should educate your class on the history of this event and encourage kindness and love in your classroom on this day. Check out the related activities below!
Mexican Independence Day (9/16) Activities
Mexican Independence Day is celebrated on September 16th in Mexico. On this day, Mexicans celebrate their independence and freedom from Spain which took place on September 16, 1810. This is the perfect day for a history lesson about Mexican history and heritage to help your students better understand the importance of Mexican independence Day. Check out the related activities below!
Constitution Day (9/17) Activities
Americans celebrate Constitution Day on September 17th every year. This is a day that recognizes the adoption and signing of the United States Constitution on September 17, 1787. This is the perfect day to educate your class on American history and the importance of Constitution Day. Check out the related activities below!
Yom Kippur (9/25) Activities
Yom Kippur is known as the most important Jewish holiday. It takes place on the 10th day of the lunar month of Tishri, which usually takes place during September or October. This holiday consists of fasting, prayer, meditation, and confession along with many other traditions such as ceremonies. This is the perfect day to educate your students about this holiday along with having a discussion about traditions, holidays, and family!
Orange Shirt Day (9/30) Activities
Americans and Canadians celebrate Orange Shirt Day on September 30th every year. On this day, people wear orange shirts to recognize the Canadian Indian residential school system, honor the children that survived residential school and to remember the lives that were lost. This is the perfect day to wear an orange shirt to represent that every child matters and to celebrate National Orange Shirt Day. Check out the related activities below!
Authors Birthdays in September
Below are authors with birthdays in September that you can use as topics and themes for teaching ideas in September.
Jon Scieska’s Birthday (9/8) Activities
Jon Scieska is an American children’s book author born on September 8, 1954. He is known for his children’s books including The Stinky Cheese Man and other Fairly Stupid Tales, Math Curse, Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor, and The True Story of the Three Little Pigs! Check out the related resources below!
Carmen Agra Deedys’ Birthday (9/11) Activities
Carmen Agra Deedy is a children’s book author born on September 11, 1960. Carmen Agra Deedy is known for her adorable picture books such as Martina the Beautiful Cockroach, The Rooster who would not be quiet!, The Library Dragon, and 14 Cows for America! Check out the related resources below!
Ronald Dahl’s Birthday (9/13) Activities
Ronald Dahl was a British children’s book author born on September 13, 1916. He was known for his classics such as Matilda, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The BFG, The Witches, and James and the Giant Peach! Consider starting to read aloud one of these classic chapter books today.
Robert McCloskey’s Birthday (9/14) Activities
Robert McCloskey is an American author and illustrator born on September 14, 1914. You may know him for his children’s books such as Make Way for Ducklings, Blueberries for Sal, Homer Price, and Time of Wonder. Check out the related activities below!
Tomie Depaola’s Birthday (9/15) Activities
Tomie Depaola is an American author and illustrator born on September 15, 1934. You may know him for his children’s books such as Strega Nona, Big Anthony, His Story, and The Art Lesson. Check out the related activities below!
Julia Donaldson’s Birthday (9/16) Activities
Julia Donaldson is an English children’s book author born on September 16, 1948. She is best known for her fun rhyming stories such as Room on The Broom, Stick Man, The Gruffalo, The Gruffalo’s Child, Zog, The Scarecrow’s Wedding, and Tiddler: The Story Telling Fish! Check out the related resources below!
Adam Wallace’s Birthday (9/19) Activities
Adam Wallace is a children’s book author born on September 19, 1972. He is known for his popular children’s book series including the books: How to Catch a Leprechaun, How to Catch a Monster, How to Catch an Elf, How to Catch a Gingerbread Man, How to Catch a Turkey, How to Catch a Mermaid, How to Catch the Easter Bunny, How to Catch a Snowman, How to Catch the Tooth Fairy, and How to Catch a Dragon! Check out the related resources below!
Esphyr Slobodkina’s Birthday (9/22) Activities
Esphyr Slobodkina was a Russian American children’s book author and illustrator born on September 22, 1908. She is most well known for her popular children’s book called Caps for Sale! Check out the related resources below!
Shel Silverstein’s Birthday (9/25) Activities
Shel Silverstein is an American author and illustrator born on September 25, 1930. You may know him for his children’s books such as The Giving Tree, A Light in the Attic, The Missing Piece and Falling Up.
September Special Days
Below are special days in September that you can use as topics and themes for teaching ideas in September.
International Bacon Day Activities
International Bacon Day takes place on the first Saturday in September every year but can be celebrated on different dates depending on the culture such as February 19th and the first Saturday in January! This is a day dedicated to celebrating the yummy American food classic that is the perfect breakfast side next to eggs, pancakes, waffles, or even just to eat alone! This is the perfect day for a class breakfast party.
National Read a Book Day (9/6) Activities
National Read a Book Day takes place on September 6th every year. This day encourages people all over the world to pick up a book and read! This is the perfect day to have your class take a trip to the school library and pick out a book of their choice that they can go back and independently read in the classroom, and then bring it home to continue enjoying and celebrating National Read a Book Day!
International Literacy Day (9/8) Activities
International Literacy Day is celebrated on September 8th every year internationally! This day celebrates and promotes the importance of literacy and expresses how literary skills are extremely important in human development and life! This is the perfect day to educate your students and expand their literacy knowledge by promoting reading and writing skills! Check out the related activities below!
National Teddy Bear Day (9/9) Activities
National Teddy Bear Day takes place on September 9th every year. This is the perfect day to have your students bring in their favorite teddy bear from home and take them out for independent reading time.
Mid-Autumn Festival Activities
Mid-Autumn Festival is also known as the moon festival, celebrated on the 15th of the 8th lunar month of the Chinese calendar around the autumn equinox. The exact date of celebration changes every year. This is a Chinese festival similar to Thanksgiving where families come together to feast and give thanks. This is the perfect day to explore culture, tradition and holidays in your classroom and educate your students about the Mid-Autumn Festival. Check out the related activities below!
Grandparents Day Activities
Grandparents Day is celebrated in September on the first Sunday after Labor day. The exact date changes every year! This is a day dedicated to celebrating, loving and acknowledging our grandparents and showing them how much we appreciate them! Many schools have the tradition of inviting the grandparents to school so if that’s you, today is the perfect day to have your students do fun activities with their grandparents to show their appreciation and love towards them to celebrate Grandparents Day in your classroom! Check out the related activities below!
National Celiac Awareness Day (9/13) Activities
National Celiac Awareness Day takes place on September 13th every year to honor a very important leader in the celiac disease research process. Dr. Samuek Gee was born on September 13, 1839, which is why this national day is held on this specific day. This day brings awareness to celiac disease which is an auto-immune disease that affects millions of people. People who have celiac disease often avoid gluten in their diets and have special diets to avoid harmful reactions to their bodies. This is the perfect day to educate your students on this disease and maybe even provide your class with a gluten free snack option.
National School Picture Day Activities
National School Picture Day takes place on the second Thursday in September every year. This is the perfect time to prepare your students for this special day by reading them a picture day read aloud and having a class discussion about how to get ready, what to wear, and to encourage your students to practice smiling for this special picture! One of our favorite books to share is Picture Day Perfection! Check out the related resources below!
International Dot Day (9/15) Activities
We celebrate International Dot Day on September 15th every year! This is a day full of creativity, and self-expression where you can write, draw, paint, dance, and just create to celebrate! This is the perfect day to read The Dot book in your classroom and have your students be creative to celebrate International Dot Day in your classroom! Check out the related activities below!
National Play-Doh Day Activities
National Play-Doh Day is celebrated on September 16 every year! This is a day dedicated to recognizing and appreciating the fun doh that children love to play with that can be used to be creative, relieve stress, and even be used as an educational tool in the classroom! This is the perfect day to give each student their very own Play-Doh to use during a class activity where they can then take it home and play with it whenever they want to celebrate National Play-Doh Day in your classroom and spread happiness from these little gifts! Check out the related activities below!
National Working Parents Day (9/16) Activities
National Working Parents Day takes place on September 16th annually. This is a day dedicated to celebrating and acknowledging the hard work that parents do at both work and home! This is the perfect day to spread the news to your students about this national holiday by sharing a special read aloud, making appreciation cards, or even just encouraging them to go home after school and give their parents a big hug to show appreciation for all their hard work!
International Talk Like a Pirate Day Activities
International Talk Like a Pirate Day is celebrated on September 19th annually! This goofy day created by two friends got the media’s attention and is now a day dedicated to spreading humor, encouraging people to talk like a pirate! This is the perfect day to spread laughs and giggles in your classroom by dressing up and talking like a pirate when your students walk into the classroom to celebrate International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Check out the related activities below!
International Day of Peace (9/21) Activities
International Day of Peace is celebrated on September 21st every year. This is a day dedicated to spreading peace in the world and encouraging peaceful mindsets, environments, and promoting peaceful actions to be performed rather than hateful to make the world a better place. This is the perfect day for a read aloud about peace and encourage your students to spread positivity through peaceful and kind actions. Check out the related activities below!
September Equinox Activities
September Equinox is celebrated in September when the sun is exactly above the equator, meaning the exact date changes every year. This is a day where day and night are exactly the same length and is the starting point of the season of fall in the northern hemisphere and spring in the southern hemisphere. This is the perfect time to educate your students about the different equinoxes that occur throughout the year through interesting videos and educational books! Check out the related activities below!
Dear Diary Day (9/22) Activities
Dear Diary Day takes place on September 22nd every year. Diaries are the perfect way to document special events in our lives and get our thoughts down on paper. This is the perfect day to have your students write a diary entry about their weekend and encourage them to continue diary writing at home to improve writing skills.
National Punctuation Day (9/24) Activities
National Punctuation Day takes place on September 24th every year. This is a day to celebrate the importance of punctuation in writing. It’s a great day for a lesson on the different types of punctuation. Our favorite mentor texts for teaching punctuation can be found in our Starts With a Story Alignment Guide.
National Lobster Day (9/25) Activities
National Lobster Day takes place on September 25th in the United States. Some great ways to celebrate this national holiday in your classroom is by decorating your classroom with a lobster theme for the day, read a picture book about lobsters (There Might Be Lobsters is one of our favorites!), and maybe even wear a lobster hat to make your students giggle! Check out the related resources below!
National Daughters Day (9/25) Activities
National Daughters Day is celebrated on September 25th every year! This is a day for parents to celebrate their bright, beautiful and intelligent daughters and to show them how much they appreciate and love them. This is the perfect day to share this information with all your students’ parents through an email so they can celebrate their daughters and make them feel a little extra special when they get home from school to celebrate National Daughters Day! Check out the related activities below!
Johnny Appleseed Day (9/26) Activities
Johnny Appleseed Day is celebrated on September 26th, which was when John Chapman, better known as Johnny Appleseed was born in 1774, and is now the date where we annually celebrate this holiday! This is a day where we recognize and celebrate an American historic figure who planted apple seeds/ apple trees in the wilderness and introduced these fruit trees throughout American countries. This is the perfect day to educate your students on the history of Johnny Appleseed through videos, books and activities! Check out the related activities below!
National Pancake Day (9/26) Activities
National Pancake Day takes place on September 26th every year. This is a day dedicated to the yummy breakfast food that can be topped with fruit, chocolate chips, whipped cream, and of course maple syrup! This day was created to celebrate the creation of the delicious breakfast food and is the perfect day to have a pancake party in your classroom! Students can top their pancakes with their favorite toppings.
National Chocolate Milk Day (9/27) Activities
National Chocolate Milk Day is celebrated on September 27th every year in the United States! This day is dedicated to celebrating and appreciating the creation of the yummy, chocolate flavored milk. Today is the perfect day to celebrate National Chocolate Milk Day in your classroom by bringing in individual chocolate milks for your students to drink while exploring the history of the creation of the yummy, childhood favorite drink! Check out the related activities below!
National Good Neighbor Day (9/28) Activities
National Good Neighbor Day takes place on September 28th every year. This is a day dedicated to appreciating our neighbors and being a kind neighbor ourselves by being friendly, helping out, and maybe even baking cookies to handout! This is the perfect day to teach a lesson on kindness and how it relates to being a good neighbor.
National Chewing Gum Day (9/30) Activities
National Chewing Gum Day is celebrated on September 30th every year in the United States! This is a day dedicated to celebrating and acknowledging the invention of the concentration, flavorful, bubble blowing invention that people love to chew on throughout their day! This is the perfect day to bring your students chewing gum to chew on while doing their school work to celebrate National Chewing Gum Day in your classroom! Check out the related activities below!
Mid-Autumn/Moon/Mooncake Festival Activities
Mid-Autumn festival, also known as the Moon or Mooncake Festival, takes place on the 15th day of the 18th month of the Chinese calendar which often takes place in September. This holiday is China’s second most important festival after Chinese New Year and is a day to celebrate the rice harvest along with many fruits. On this day, people gather for dinner, light paper lanterns, and eat moon cakes. This would be the perfect day to explore this holiday with your students by making paper lanterns and learning about the holiday.
Popular Topics in September
When brainstorming September teaching ideas, consider incorporating these topics: apples, scarecrows, autumn, and squirrels.
We hope you found this post with September teaching ideas helpful! If you enjoyed this post, you may be interested in these other posts related to teaching in September: