If you’re looking for veterans day activities for elementary students, this post has some fun suggestions. These are some fun free veterans day activities for school and some meaningful ideas.
Most people, young and old, know that Veterans Day is observed on November 11 and is a major holiday, but aside from that, it’s indeed a special date in history. Teachers who want to make Veterans Day mean something to their students have several excellent options they can consider to add significance and also to make the learning fun.
How November 11 Came To Be
In 1938, Veterans Day became an official national holiday in the United States to remember those who served during World War I. It was previously known as Armistice Day. In 1954, the name was changed to Veterans Day to celebrate those who had served in war or peace, dead or alive.
Although war can be very complicated, children of all ages can learn a lot about these important chapters in history.
What can students do for Veterans Day?
Make Cards For Vets
Students at every level enjoy expressing themselves, and making heartfelt cards for veterans is one way to show appreciation and respect for those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
As a teacher, you can find a list of veterans organizations that will accept the homemade cards and send them to active-duty soldiers or veterans. Your pupils will have fun doing the artwork and creating their own cards and thoughts, and they will feel good about themselves and understand what November 11 means to America’s heroes.
Read Aloud Illustrated Books
Children do especially well in learning new things when they can see and hear about a subject. For example, teaching young minds about the importance of the military and about the traditional holiday can come alive to pupils as they look at beautiful children’s books about Veterans Day.
These books are well-written, colorfully illustrated, kid-friendly, and fantastic for reading aloud to students. After, you can start a discussion about November 11 and ask your pupils why there is a Veterans Day holiday and what it symbolizes to the nation.
Take A Parade Field Trip
You can find Veterans Day parades in many communities in your city, town, or nearby, and planning a school field trip is another way to mark the important occasion. Students will not only enjoy watching the parade march down the street, but they will pay attention to the participants, the music, the events, and the keynote speakers that will grace the celebration.
Pupils may get to see wreath-laying at veterans’ memorials, a 21-gun salute, the playing of Taps (the bugle melody), etc. It’s quite an educational event for all.
Help Homeless Veterans
Achieve a teachable moment for the Veterans Day holiday through student involvement in aiding homeless veterans. As a teacher, you can have your students participate in a care package drive that puts the focus on military vets who have struggled after returning home from active duty.
Your class and school can join in collecting individual and travel-size items to place in care packages for veterans. Many young students feel important in giving back and are happy about contributing in this manner.
USA Cares is a national non-profit that has helped thousands of vets and military families facing hardships. The care packages they give veterans often include daily essentials such as soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothbrushes and toothpaste, disposable razors, t-shirts, cotton socks, granola bars, etc.
Paint Remembrance Stones
Here is an arts and crafts activity that kids will have a blast making to help mark the Veterans Day holiday. You can discuss the importance of November 11 and show the class how to make their own remembrance stones. One popular type is the poppy remembrance stone, and can be made using black stones and painting thoughtful expressions such as “thank you” or “always remember.” The children can paint red poppies on their stones, and as a teacher, you can explain the flower’s significance as a symbol of sacrifice worn by Americans since World War I to honor soldiers who lost their lives.
War is never an easy subject, but it often tells a story about a nation and its survival. Young children can grasp the importance of November 11, honor the heroes and have fun expressing their feelings.
Sheryl Wright is a freelance writer specializing in education, health, and interior design. If she is not at home reading, she is at a farmers market or climbing in the Rockies. She currently lives in Nashville, TN, with her cat, Saturn.
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