Monday, March 17, 2008

Teaching Patriotism in Elementary Schools

Patriotism is a growing concern in our nation today. One of the ways to teach children patriotism is to have them be in an informative play or program. Many schools and teachers are looking for programs to fit this description that are easy to put on and take very little practice time to present. With all the teaching and testing that teachers are required to do for the “No Child Left Behind” idea. It has left them with little time to do the creative programs for their students. Even though these are the activities that children will remember they are the ones that are being eliminated from schools.

Patriotic programs also need to teach and educate students in a creative way about their country. The programs or plays show them just what a priceless gift freedom is for them to celebrate and embrace. Teaching them about respect for their flag, country and other patriotic symbols such as the Statue of Liberty, The Liberty Bell, The Washington Monument, and the Lincoln Memorial is important for patriotism to take root in young children.

There are many holidays that students could participate in patriotic programs. Just a few are Constitution Day in September, Veterans Day in November, Election Day, in November, Pearl Harbor Day in December, Columbus Day in October, Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January, Presidents Day in February, Memorial Day in May, and of course July 4th in July. All of these times are special events that call for some patriotic program and it helps us appreciate our freedom more. Another more recent day is 9/11 in September to remember those people who serve our country

Nothing instills patriotism more than a good patriotic song. There are so many on the market today that it is not hard to find something to fit any patriotic program. Another must for a patriotic program is a good power point presentation showing our flag, or maybe even all the flags that have flown over the United States. A good power point can make students feel how important that flag really is to them. One of the things that I like in programs to teach patriotism is to always start the program with the scouts posting the Colors of the United States of America. One years we had taps played and the students really enjoyed that, also.

To summarize some of the most important parts for a patriotic program is:

Take the time to do a patriotic program at least one a year

Talk about the symbols that represent our country

Choose an appropriate day to celebrate

Include patriotic music

Include pictures

Post the Colors and Retrieve the Colors of the United States of America

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