Search & Win

Memorial Day

Campster making noise with a flag tucked behind one ear
Yesterday, being Memorial Day, we decided to go to the parade in town.  Having lived in Pasadena, CA during college, I had sworn off parades long ago - too much Rose Parade is not a good thing.  But, I wanted the kids to have the quintessential small town America experience - so we headed to town.  The girls had never been to a parade.  And Jor Man had, but didn't really remember it.

Wow.  They did it up right.  There were many, many veterans.  And everyone clapped.  Someone was handing out flags for the kids to wave.  I explained to the kids that their job was to clap and wave their flags in honor not only of the people in the parade who had served their country and won our freedoms, but also in honor of the many who had died in that service.  It was really moving to me.

Also in the parade were the school band, the community band, the police, firefighters, and volunteer ambulance service.  Then came the boy and girl scouts.  I think half the town was in the parade, and the other half was watching, cheering them on.

Following the parade, well, everyone followed the parade!  The crowd fell in behind the last group and walked up the middle of the main street to the old cemetery.  We stopped along the way to talk with the veterans who were all in uniform.  "Where and when did you serve?"  I would ask them.  They lit up to tell of their personal history.  One had served at the end of WWII.  He was there for VJ day.  Another served during WWII, but did not see action.  The kids really enjoyed hearing their stories and asking questions.  It make history come alive to meet the people who lived it.  We all thanked them for sharing their stories with us, and for their service to us.  I think we made their day.

Sher Bear in the world's most patriotic dress
We found a shady place to sit among the grave stones and listen.  There, amongst the graves of many who served in the French and Indian, and the Revolutionary Wars, we heard as a boy read the Gettysburg Address.  Prayers were offered, and songs sung.  There was even a 21 gun salute!

As we walked out of the cemetery, Jor Man told me he had a "suggestment" (his special word).  He wanted to know if we could come to the graveyard once a week and make grave rubbings.

"Then," he said, "We could study the people who died and find out about them."  What a great idea!  This is exactly why I unschool - kids are interested in the world, and they will find their own ways to learn about it that are meaningful to them.  So I am looking into Ancestry.com as a resource for gravestone research.

I'd love to hear what fun things your kids come up with to study.  Please, share their great ideas, and we can encourage each other by our kids' ingenuity and creativity.

Wish you were here!

1 comment:

Dakota said...

For her cousin's sixth birthday party, Kwilu (aged 4) went to the Museum of Natural History. The party had five rooms to visit with questions/answers to scavenge in each. I was really surprised to hear her two weeks later mention that the whale there didn't have teeth. She didn't remember the word "baleen", but she remembered that particular fact. So I asked her 'a la Travel Mom if there was anything she'd like to learn more about. Whales and Dinosaurs. That's why you see a bunch of books about those subjects in my May reading list.

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