Special Days and Observances in January 2020

A couple building a snowman

Toa Heftiba / Unsplash

New Year's Day is just the first of many special days and observances in January that can provide you with ideas for learning and fun to share with your child or classroom. Together you can enjoy activities that celebrate Trivia Day, Appreciate a Dragon Day, and National Kazoo Day. January is also National Book Month and International Creativity Month.

There are also health awareness observances and national month-long themes and weeks that promote healthy living and showcase specific conditions. Use these as an opportunity to talk to your kids about these topics. For example, National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week can be your prompt to broach a delicate subject and initiate a thoughtful discussion about the topic. You may also find activities planned by community centers, schools, or health care organizations related to specific observances.

Month-Long Observances

  • National Hobby Month: The beginning of the year is a great time to start a hobby!
  • National Book Month: Get reading!
  • National Get Organized Month: Start the year off organized and get inspired by this topic.
  • International Creativity Month: Celebrate with a creative project.
  • National Mentoring Month: Use this month to become a mentor.
  • It's Okay to Be Different Month: Use this theme as a discussion topic to prompt kids to talk about various differences between people.
  • Reference Book Month: Visit a local library and browse the reference books.
  • High-Tech Month: Learn about our lives are enhanced by technology.
  • Reaching Your Potential Month: Use this theme with your new mentor or mentee.
  • Cervical Health Awareness Month: Do you know the importance of the HPV vaccine for your adolescent sons and daughters?
  • National Birth Defects Prevention Month: Learn healthy lifestyle choices that can keep your baby safe.
  • National Winter Sports TBI Awareness Month: Learn about the importance of helmets to prevent brain injury.
  • Thyroid Awareness Month: Learn how to spot thyroid issues and how this gland helps your body.
  • National Stalking Awareness Month: Be aware of how serious stalking can be and take steps to help anyone who might need it.

Week-Long Observances

These observances are celebrated during the weeks of January:

Special Days and Holidays

These days may be observed on the same date each year or they may vary from year to year. Check your calendar for the exact date for each new year.

First Week

  • January 1: New Years Day
  • January 2: National Science Fiction Day
  • January 3: JRR Tolkien Day
  • January 4: Trivia Day
  • January 5: National Bird Day

Second Week

  • January 6: Sherlock Holmes' Birthday
  • January 7: Old Rock Day
  • January 8: Bubble Bath Day
  • January 9: National Static Electricity Day
  • January 9: Word Nerd Day
  • January 10: Peculiar People Day
  • January 11: Amelia Earhart Day 
  • January 12: National Pharmacist Day

Third Week

  • January 13: Make Your Dream Come True Day
  • January 14: Ratification Day (Treaty of Paris)
  • January 15: Strawberry Ice Cream Day
  • January 16: Appreciate a Dragon Day
  • January 17: Benjamin Franklin's Birthday
  • January 18: Thesaurus Day
  • January 19: National Popcorn Day

Fourth Week

  • January 20: Inauguration Day
  • January 21: National Hugging Day
  • January 21: Martin Luther King Day
  • January 23: National Handwriting Day
  • January 24: National Compliment Day
  • January 24: Clashing Clothes Day
  • January 26: Toad Hollow Day of Encouragement

Fifth Week

  • January 28: National Kazoo Day
  • January 29: National Puzzle Day
  • January 20: Draw a Dinosaur Day
  • January 31: Backwards Day