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As I look around America it seems like our sense of patriotism is slowing fading away. People are refusing to stand for the National Anthem, say the Pledge of Allegiance, or even cover their hearts to honor our great nation. It feels like American Pride is a thing of the past. Too often I believe we forget the countless men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we can enjoy our way of life. Countless individuals have died to ensure that we keep these rights that we so often neglect to be thankful for.
It was with these thoughts in mind that I declared Memorial Day a “learning day” at our house. There were no grand lesson plans or activities for the day, but I did want to teach my children the true meaning of Memorial Day. I hope that one day they will be able to fully grasp the concept that these heroes gave their lives for others, all in the name of freedom. Also, that many are still serving all around the world, and they are ever ready to lay down their lives so we have the right to fully enjoy ours. Here are some of the activities that we completed this Memorial Day. (Please preview all links and articles to be sure they will work for your family)
I went to YouTube to find videos describing the history & customs of Memorial Day. I found our favorite one here from The History Channel. We also watched the President lay the wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. This brought up a discussion of the Tomb of the Unknown so we watched this quick video from CNN.
2). Books & Articles:
I found this Kindle book that describes Memorial Day to children, as well as a short article on Time for Kids. My kiddos had the wiggles this morning, but I had also planned on having them create their own books based on the facts we had learned.
3). Thank You Cards:
After learning all the facts & history we decided to make a Thank You card for a service member. This is a simple way to give encouragement to those who are still serving. There are also many options to create care packages for soldiers. We plan on sending our cards through Caring Kids Cards.
4). Sidewalk Art:
Of course no holiday is complete for my children without decorations. They both decided to go all out on some sidewalk art to cerebrate the occasion. If you are interested in something more in-depth Pinterest has loads of Memorial Day crafts.
So that’s was it. It was not elaborate or grand, but just a few brief moments to pause and consider what this holiday is really about. I think many times we are so caught up in the cookouts and pool parties that we forget to recognize the true significance of the day. How about you? Did you do anything special with your children for Memorial Day? If so, please comment below.