Leap Year

Hoppy Leap Year! 29th February comes only once every 4 years, and 2024 is a Leap Year! To celebrate we have a range of leap year printables which you can use in the classroom or home, all with a hoppy leap year theme!

What Is A Leap Year?

The Earth takes 365.24219 days to orbit the sun. This means that, without leap years, the seasons would slowly change over time. Leap years help the calendar year stay in step with the astronomical year.

The first leap years were introduced by Julius Caesar over 2000 years ago. In the Julian calendar, a leap year fell every 4 years. This proved to be too many leap years, however, so the calendar was changed.

The Gregorian calendar (named after Pope Gregory XIII) has 365 days. A leap year containing an extra day occurs when the following rules are satisfied:

1. A year must be evenly divisible by 4 to be a leap year.
2. If the year can be divided by 100 it is only a leap year if it can be divided by 400. So 2000 is a leap year, but 2100 is not. Most people don't know this!

The extra day is added to February making 29th February.

In a tradition thought to date back to the 5th century, a woman may ask a man to marry her on leap days!

What Happens If You Are Born on 29th February?

People born on February 29th, also known as "leap day," celebrate their birthday on February 28th during non-leap years. However, some people choose to celebrate their birthday on both 28th February and 1st March. Why not have two birthdays when you can!

Fun fact: A child who is born on 29th February is known as a “leapling” or a “leap-year baby”.

Eight Fun Leap Year Activity Ideas for Kids

Create a Leap Year Time Capsule:
Encourage children to create a time capsule with items that represent their present time. They could add their favourite toys, books, and pictures taken on this special day to the capsule. The time capsule can be opened in four years during the next leap year.

Make a Leap Year Time Capsule Video:
Older children could create a video to capture their experiences on Leap Year. They could interview each other, record their activities, and share their hopes and dreams for the next four years.

Learn about the Science of Leap Years:
Teach children about the science behind leap years and the astronomical reasons for them. Explain how the earth rotates around the sun, and the extra day in a Leap Year helps to keep the calendar year aligned with the solar year.

Make a Paper Frog:
Children can create paper frogs to symbolise the "leap" in Leap Year. They can learn about the frog's unique ability to jump and make a fun craft to commemorate the day.

Have a Leap Frog Race:
Organize a fun and lively Leap Frog race, using pillows or cushions to create a course. Children can form teams and race themselves - or their paper frogs - taking turns to "leap" to the finish line.

Plan a Leap Year Party:
Children can plan a Leap Year party, complete with decorations, food, and games. They can create invitations, plan the menu, and play Leap Year-themed games.

Leap Year Scavenger Hunt:
Plan a scavenger hunt around the house or garden with clues related to Leap Year. Children can work in teams or individually to find hidden items, with the winner receiving a prize.

Write a Leap Year Poem:
Encourage children to write a poem about Leap Year, using descriptive language and creative imagery. They can share their poems with each other or with their family.

2024 Is A Leap Year Bookmarks

Recognise 2024 as a Leap year with these fun froggy bookmarks. Hand them out and use them for the whole of February - especially on 29th!

2024 Is A Leap Year Bookmarks - Black and White

Colour and cut out these fun froggy bookmarks for the leap year in 2024. They make a fun little gift for kids to give, or a simple activity to accompany your lesson about the calendar and leap years.

2024 Is A Leap Year Display Banner

This fun Leap Year banner for 2024 prints out over 3 pages. Just trim and join together to display, ready for the 29th February!

2024 Is A Leap Year Poster

This poster is a fun reminder that 2024 is a leap year. Print it out on your borderless settings for best results, or just trim off the white edges. Enjoy 29th February, our extra day!

Calendar Rhyme Colouring Page

Here's a colouring page featuring the Calendar Rhyme and a leaping frog for Leap Year - a fun way to help the kids learn the days in the each month.

Calendar Rhyme Poster

Despite it's old fashioned language, there's no doubt that learning the calendar rhyme helps children (and many, many adults, myself included) to remember the number of days in each month.

Hoppy Leap Year Bookmarks

Just for fun, wish the kids a Hoppy Leap Year with our funny frog bookmarks! Print onto card, cut out carefully and laminate if you wish. We've left a little space on the front for your child's name, the year, or a message.

Is it a Leap Year Poster

Here's a fun froggy poster that explains how to work out whether it's a Leap year - or not.

It's a Leap Year Colouring Page

It's a Leap Year - so why not get the green crayons out and colour in this lovely leaping frog!

Leap Day Worksheet

29th February can feel like a "bonus" day, so this worksheet asks children to write about what they would do with that bonus day, if they could do anything they wanted...

Leap into the Future Worksheet

This fun Leap Year worksheet asks children to imagine what the world will be like, four years into the future. Choose from black and white or colour.

Leap Year Board Game

Playing a game is a great way to learn how Leap Years work, and to practise some maths skills at the same time. Just put your counters on the "Start" stepping stone, then roll one dice. Work out whether you have landed on a leap year or a normal year.

Leap Year Comprehension

Learn all about Leap Years with this printable comprehension worksheet. Read the history of Leap Years and the rules for them in our Gregorian calendar, then answer the questions.

Leap Year Finger Tracing

Use your child's forefinger to trace the letters on this Leap Year handwriting worksheet, starting on the dots. Why not colour it in then laminate it, so that it can be traced with a dry wipe pen too?

Leap Year Handwriting Worksheet

There's plenty of handwriting practise available on this fun Leap Year worksheet, with letters to trace and space for your child to write the word unaided too.

Leap Year Poster

A fun leap year poster to print - featuring a charming frog, of course! The next leap year is in 2016.

Leap Year Stepping Stones

To help the frog hop across this pond, children need to work out which lily pads contain leap years and which don't. The rules for leap years in the Gregorian calendar are stated at the top of the worksheet.

Leap Year Stepping Stones Four Times Table

What better time for kids to practise their 4 times table than at Leap Year! Hop the frog across the lily pond, only landing on lily pads that are multiples of four.

Leap Year Stepping Stones Make 29

As it's a Leap Year, use the excuse to practise your sums! Hop the frog across the pond by landing on lily pads that add up to 29...

Leap Year Stepping Stones Make 4

Here's a fun way to practise simple addition at Leap Year, hopping the frog across the pond by landing only on lily pads that add up to 4.

Leap Year Word Search

We've hidden the word "leap" 20 times in this grid to make an interesting word search puzzle for Leap Year. It's quite a challenge to find them all...

Leap Year Word Tracing

Trace over the dotted letters spelling Leap Year and colour in the funny leaping frog! A fun handwriting worksheet for 29th February...

Lily Pad Number Line Skip Counting by 4

We designed this lily pad number line, with numbers divisible by 4 highlighted in yellow, to be used with out frog number line markers, with Leap Year in mind - but of course if works well for 4 times tables practice too.

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