Have you ever been at a loss for words when your child asks you that powerful “why” question? Questions like “Why do we celebrate on July 4?” give you a great opportunity to instill love of country in your kids.
Here are two great ideas to help you share the meaning of Independence Day with your child.
- Why do we celebrate on July 4?
- The Fourth of July is our country’s birthday.
- On July 4, 1776, more than 200 years ago, the leaders of our country decided they would no longer follow orders from the King of Great Britain, and declared themselves free from his rule. (We would make our own country, our own laws, and our own rules.)
- That took a lot of courage because disobeying the king was a crime that was punishable by death. Their decision started a war between those who wanted to be their own country and those who supported the king.
- The new United States won the fight in 1783 with the Revolutionary War.
- So on July 4, we celebrate those who fought and died to make our country independent.
- What is an American?
- Our country is different from many countries. Those of us who are citizens of the United States have rights and freedoms some individuals in other countries don’t have. For example, you have the right, when you grow up, to choose our country’s leaders through elections. You can choose any profession you’d like to pursue. Our country doesn’t tell you who you are or what you have to do for the rest of your life. It means you can believe any way you prefer, and you have the right to go to whatever church you want, or not go to church at all.
- As Americans, our shared belief that people should have the freedom to live the way they want and do the jobs they like brings people from all over the world to our country and become Americans too. That’s why we have so many different people from so many different cultures that make up our country.
- This is a great opportunity to discuss diversity of our culture and Americans of different backgrounds. Consider a conversation about your family’s journey to the United States. How did your relatives come to be Americans?