Thursday, May 21, 2015

Memorial Day with Teenagers

My teenagers know why we celebrate Memorial Day, but it boils down to us going over to their grandparents' house for a bbq and some red, white and blue dessert.  This year I am going to make sure they understand the importance of honoring our veterans and those who are currently serving. 

Has anyone in your family served?  

My grandfather was in World War II.  We will visit his grave with flowers (he was a big fan of flowers!  Especially hyacinth and tiger lilies!) and an American flag.

Do you have any local memorial sites? 

Our city library has a memorial right out front with the names of local soldiers who lost their life fighting for our country in Vietnam and the Korean War.

If you don't know anyone yourself, you can Celebrate Memorial Day with a Senior Vet: 

Online resources:  

The History of Memorial Day on Youtube 

I still make Emily do copywork.  Most schools do not teach cursive anymore, but I do!  I have used part of the poem "For the Fallen" to make my own cursive sheet.  

For copywork, memory work or poetry - here is a copy of "In Flanders' Field" 

There are many resources on Memorial  including:

*Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr's 1884 Speech "So to the indifferent inquirer who asks why Memorial Day is still kept up we may answer, it celebrates and solemnly reaffirms from year to year a national act of enthusiasm and faith. It embodies in the most impressive form our belief that to act with enthusiam and faith is the condition of acting greatly."

*Poetry, such as Walt Whitman's "Dirge for Two Veterans" 

(United States Army Chorus on Youtube) 

*Presidential statements and speeches - including Ronald Reagan's Proclamation in 1981

*National moment of remembrance "Encouraging individual department and agency personnel, and Americans everywhere, to pause for one minute at 3:00 p.m. (local time) on Memorial Day, to remember and reflect on the sacrifices made by so many to provide freedom for all."

This next site from PBS broadcasts a live concert on Memorial Day - plus there are other videos and history information. 

I plan on using several of these resources to make Memorial Day more than a burger and some Jello this year!


  1. You have some great resources for Memorial Day here. I agree with you that it is important for our kids to understand the meaning of this day. My husband is retired Army, so my boys have grown up with it. We took the opportunity a few years ago to visit Washington DC over Memorial Day weekend. That was very memorable for them.

    1. Thank your husband for his service! The kids and I were able to visit Washington DC a few years ago as well. I would love to be able to go back again some day!

  2. I was looking for things for teens for Memorial Day today, too. I especially like the flag folding you found.

    1. I never knew that each fold had a different meaning! I think it's important that we stress love of our great country to our kids!