Sunday, November 6, 2016

Veterans Day in the Classroom


Veterans Day is this Friday, November 11th. There are a lot of ways to infuse this holiday into the classroom, to celebrate our veterans and allow our children to learn more about the military. Most of my students are from military families, but this was not the case at a school that I previously taught at. Many kids do not know much about the men and women that fight everyday for our freedom. Veterans Day is a fantastic opportunity to share more about this. Keep reading below!


Celebrating with veterans
We have a high military family population at my school, so during morning meeting military parents come into the classroom in uniform to talk about their jobs. After the parents talk about their military career, kids get to ask questions. Teachers always go over appropriate questions with the kids beforehand so we try to minimize the inevitable question from certain kids "have you killed someone?". We have a spirit day as well, where all the kids dress in red, white, and blue. If your school is open to something like this, it is an incredible community builder that bridges together the kids and parents.



Bulletin board display
I made this display to welcome the veterans coming into our classroom. The turkey's feathers are made of red, white, and blue handprints from the kids. It's an easy display to make, but is also a good reminder for the week about the upcoming holiday!




Language Arts
I try to infuse military information into other content all week. I like using my Veterans Day interactive notebook activities from my TPT store all week in my classroom. There is a guide word dictionary search, as well as a verb or noun sort. Kids can practice those vital literacy and grammar skills while working with a military theme!






Social Studies
I use my social studies block to hit home regarding what Veterans Day is, and more about the military. Many kids often confuse Memorial Day and Veterans Day, so I also give them the reminder that Memorial=May; NoVember=Veterans. We talk about how Veterans Day is about veterans that have fought for, or are still fighting, for our country, while Memorial Day celebrates those who passed that fought for our country.











In my state's standards, Veterans Day is in the curriculum for social studies. Even if it is not in your state, I still think taking the day to learn about it is absolutely worth it! We create flower fold-ups above, and a Veterans Day flipbook below. The kids love anything foldable or hands-on, so these are a hit in my classroom! We first do a read-aloud (ideas listed below!), then create one of the these pieces to assess and check our understanding of this important United States holiday.

















Read Alouds

  • America's White Table by Margot Theis Raven
  • H is for Honor by Devin Scillian
  • Proud as a Peacock, Brave as a Lion by Jane Barclay
  • Rags: Hero Dog of WWII by Margot Theis Raven
  • The Poppy Lady by Barbara Walsh
  • The Wall by Eve Bunting
  • Tuesday Tucks Me In by Luis Carlos
  • Veterans Day by Mir Tamim Ansary

Videos
If you have any extra time during the day, the following videos are great to explain Veterans Day to kids. These videos are short, and work out really well if you don't have much time to talk about Veterans Day!





If you're interested in my Veterans Day Interactive Notebook activities, check out the link below!




How do you celebrate Veterans Day in your classroom? Comment below!

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