We were reading along in the A Kid’s Guide to Drawing the Presidents – George Washington on the 15th of June and came across The Birth of a New Nation and the American Flag. The boys were interested to discover that the original description was something like – “Red and white stripes with 13 stars on a blue field” – so all of the flags did not resemble each other in the 1777. We talked about the 14th being Flag Day and why that would be important to honor and remember our flag.
Last evening was the Summer Reading Program at the Library so I checked out the books The Star Spangled Banner and I Pledge Allegiance. One book brings us through the pledge, how it began, the author, and the changes that have taken place since it became official in 1892. The boys were interested in the two changes – in 1923 from I pledge allegiance to my flag to I pledge allegiance to the Flag and in 1954 when Congress added the words Under God , as Abraham Lincoln said in the Gettysburg Address. We talked about how schools in some states have taken that phrase out, and Jon was pretty upset, he didn’t know that kids could not say that part in school. It was interesting to read when they decided to put your right hand on your heart during the pledge also.
We also learned about The Star Spangled Banner song, how it started on a scrap of paper through emotional little quips of a poem. We are gaining ground to July 4th, and have a huge celebration planned. I was surprised that both boys did not tie the battle with the British to the 4th of July. We’ve studied this before, but it had not sunk in. Nate was most excited about “The Rockets Red Glare, the Bombs Bursting In Air – Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.” We talked in depth about capture the flag and what it means to get to another man’s territory and replace their flag with your own. They both had pretty visual ideas from Night Capture the Flag romps and from the scenes of Pirates of the Caribbean when Jack raises the flag on the British ship each time he “borrows” it for a bit.
My heart is full – as this is one of the first (of many to come) conversations where I didn’t feel like the “teacher” but more of the sharer. We read the same books – had a great conversation, reasoned, brought in experience examples, and each had something different that we wanted to write in our notebooks. Oh how I am glad to enter into this new phase of learning!!!
You might be interested in A Kid’s Guide to Drawing the Presidents over at Timberdoodle and the President’s Notebooking Pages over at the NotebookingPages.Com.
(I received the President’s Books both through a review opportunity and as a free contest on Timberdoodle’s website. I have fulfilled my obligation to give a review – however, I will continue writing about our progress. I purchased the 851 page set of notebooking pages on my own through Notebooking Pages.com although I LOVE these products, you could follow along with books from the Library. )