Memorial Day is often thought of as the beginning of summer – a long weekend to spend at the pool, having a cookout, or maybe even going out of town for a few days. While a long holiday weekend is amazing, we also know it’s important to take time and remember the real meaning behind Memorial Day, and with small children that can be difficult. To help you, our Raleigh preschool is sharing some fun and meaningful ways to celebrate Memorial Day with your toddlers and preschoolers.
Explaining Memorial Day to Small Children
The idea of Memorial Day can be difficult to explain, because it’s about honoring those who died while serving in the military and armed forces, especially to toddlers and preschoolers. Young children often have trouble understanding death and loss while also being very literal. Sometimes, a simple, but direct explanation is best, such as, “On Memorial Day, we remember the men and women who passed away while protecting our country.” Or, “On Memorial Day, we want to take time to show support and honor those in the military who fought to keep our country free but are now no longer with us.”
Fly the Flag
On Memorial Day, you and your children can display your flag as a show of support and remembrance. According to flag etiquette, display the flag at half-staff until noon and then raise it to full staff from noon to sunset. There’s also a customary National Moment of Remembrance at 3:00 P.M. where you can join in one minute of silence with Americans across the country.
If you don’t have a flag, you and your children can make a flag with construction paper or even coloring a picture! There are plenty of ways to fly the flag, even in a non-traditional way.
Take Part in a Raleigh Memorial Day Event
Bring your preschooler or toddler to one of the many community events in Raleigh for Memorial Day. There will be a community service at Raleigh Memorial Park at 11:00 A.M. with music, refreshments, and a memorial balloon release. For an all day event, Hope Baptist Church in Wake Forest is hosting a Celebrate Memorial Day Event from 9:00 A.M. to 4:15 P.M. and will have free barbecue, military vehicle rides, children’s activities, a parade, and Dan the Animal Man.
For a full list of local events, visit the News-Observer.
Honor Those Who are Overseas
While Memorial Day is traditionally to honor those who we’ve lost, reaching out to someone who is serving is a great activity for children. Putting together a care package or items for a care package can make someones day, especially when you include personal care and snack items, such as:
- Disposable razors, deodorant, sunscreen
- Lip balm and unscented hand lotion
- Instant coffee and individual size drink mixes
- Beef jerky
- Tuna or chicken kits
- Granola or protein bars
- Gum and heat-resistant candy
- Entertainment like crossword puzzle books
- Mini flashlights (with extra batteries!)
For an extra treat, baking a “cake in a jar” is an excellent way to send homebaked goodies without worrying about it spoiling or the soldiers just getting crumbs! Get the recipe here!
Check out Support Our Troops, Any Soldier,and Operation Shoebox for great options for donating care packages or care package items.
Happy Memorial Day from Our 5-Star Preschool
We hope you have a lovely Memorial Day Weekend no matter how you choose to spend it! At our Raleigh preschool and child care center, we celebrate a wide variety of holidays with fun, educational activities. To learn more about our Raleigh preschool or schedule a tour to enroll your child, reach out to us. Give us a call at our North Hills Drive location at 919-785-0303 or our Spring Forest Location at 919-790-6888, or schedule your tour now.