We did this flag craft on Flag Day but I wanted to share it for Fourth of July. Even though Flag Day is the American Flag’s birthday the day most people wave it is the Fourth of July. The greatest lesson I want to teach my son about the flag is that it means something and that it’s not just a fun design that looks pretty. This simple activity and book together did just that. Now when he waves this flag in between scrambling for candy at our hometown parade he will hopefully see much more than he did before.
- Gather your materials. You will need some white paper, a sheet of construction paper, scissors, glue or double stick tape, markers and a pencil.
- Start by talking about flags. You can read the book below first or just grab a flag and talk about it and basic symbolism.
- Have your child decide if they will make a flag for themselves, your family or a made up world like my son did.
- Start drawing in pencil. Now that my son is a little older I am trying to get him started thinking about rough drafts and final drafts.
- Add color.
- Cut out.
- Draw a flag pole on the construction paper and glue or tape the flag on.
- Time to write. My son and I shared this duty. If your child is not writing yet have them dictate their explanation of the flag.
- Glue or tape the explanation down. Have your child present their flag if possible at the dinner table to the rest of the family. I think little presentations help build confidence for public speaking in safe space. Proudly display after presenting.
Red, White, and Blue (Penguin Young Readers, L3) by John Herman is a great non fiction read about the American flag. Non fiction books are becoming more important for all ages as the Common Core State Standards focus much more heavily on non fiction works than most previous curriculum standards. I love history and I have passed that down to my son who read this entire book to me at bedtime Saturday night. It’s filled with facts but it also has great colorful pictures that support the text which is so important for children still getting comfortable with reading aloud. This book is long and I would suggest it for kids 5 and older although younger kids may enjoy it in pieces. The author did a great job presenting the important takeaways without losing the reader’s interest . I was particularly impressed with the author’s note about the lack of real evidence that Betsy Ross actually sewed the first flag. As someone who studied history I appreciate the accuracy while still acknowledging the familiar story and it’s uncertainty. All in all a great historical resource for kids.This post contains an affiliate link.