I wanted to share what we did for the 4th of July, - or better yet, Independence Day.
When is the last time you read the Declaration of Independence? I was amazed how much of it I had forgotten since my school days.
In an era of protests and rebellions, when countries around the world are in chaos with violence and unrest (2011 is being called by many in the media the year of the 'Arab spring') I think it is crucial our children understand exactly HOW our forefathers came to the decision, and how they choose to execute separation from England. It is essential to understand how their respect of authority, moral honor, and firm belief in God and his ways was the foundation of our nation.
For a child friendly version that uses everyday English that might be a good place to start -click here.
For a complete copy of the original, click here.
After we reading this, we talked about the flag, - why the colors and patterns were chosen.
We then listened to the national anthem with two verses, sung by a men's choir - or what sounds like a group of soldiers!
As I talked to Justice about the words and what they meant, and listened, I got goosebumps.
These things were just a start. My goals are to really create a focused and informative time every year at July 4th. I want my son to know exactly WHY we celebrate with fireworks,
and what a blessed country it is that we call home."The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more." (John Adams )
Do you have a 4th of July tradition you want to share? What do you do to encourage patriotism in your children??