Saturday, May 26, 2012

Memorial Day: What Can Children Learn?

This is Memorial Day Week End. It is a celebration to honor our service men and women and those who have served or died protecting our freedom. What can children learn from our celebrations this weekend?

Besides the picnics and cookouts, swimming and summer fun, children can learn from us just what this day means in terms of freedom.

Share with your children about honor, pride, and service but also share with them about war, sacrifice, and loss. Help them to understand why we need our military and how important those who serve are to our freedom. Introduce them to a veteran so they can learn first hand what an honor it is to serve our country. Here are ways to include learning activities with the weekend celebrations.
  • Make or write out cards to send to our service men and women currently overseas.
  • Visit a veterans' home or nursing home and deliver Memorial Day Cards or treats.
  • Attend a Memorial Day Parade
  • Visit the library and look up a book on one of the wars fought so we can be free. There are several books at almost every age level appropriate for discussing with your child.
  • Check with your school or church to find a child whose parent is away serving the military and make up a summer gift box to give to that child. Include a thank you card for the sacrifice the child makes when a parent is away from home.
  • Visit a local cemetery with older children and find headstones that depict and honor those who have served and died for our freedom. Research the battle or war they fought in.
There are so many ways to teach a child about the meaning of Memorial Day. Regardless of politics or religion, children can learn to respect those that serve and honor them with gratitude and remembrance on this very special day.

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