Fun Ways to Teach Kids the Meaning of Independence Day

Kids love the fun and food on the Independence Day, but do they really understand why we celebrate? Check out these easy tips for teaching kids the true meaning of Independence Day!

No matter which country you live in, kids love Independence Day! What’s not to love? Between the fireworks, the delicious treats and all the family fun, celebrating the birth of your nation is truly a special day! However, many kids don’t fully understand the meaning of Independence Day. Thankfully, there are some things you can do to teach your kids the meaning of Independence Day for your nation.

Related: Best Family Movies to Watch on the 4th of July

Teaching Kids the Meaning of Independence Day

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Tell your kids what Independence Day really means– This is the first thing you want to do with your kids. Talk to them about what the 4th of July, Canada Day or your country’s particular celebration is all about. They have more than likely learned some things in school so find out what they already know. Talk to them about how important the holiday is and what the history is behind it.

Also, teach them about the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence (or your country’s different proclamations of independence and laws guaranteeing freedom). While fireworks, parades, barbecues and picnics are all fun things to do on the 4th of July, it is truly important that kids know why we celebrate the holiday.

What is 4th of July: Meaning of Independence Day

Find age-appropriate books for your kids– There are a wide array of books that are designed for all age groups that will help them better understand exactly what Independence Day is all about. Some popular books include “The Fourth of July Story” by Alice Dalgliesh (ages 4-8), “The Story of the Star Spangled Banner” by Patricia Pingry (ages 4-8), “What is the 4th of July” by Elaine Landau (ages 8 and up) and “Happy 4th of July, Jenny Sweeney” by Leslie Kimmelman (ages 3-6).

Take time to honor our soldiers with your children– Take some time for you and your family to visit a local cemetery. Bring along some flowers or flags to place on the graves of soldiers. While at the cemetery, talk to your kids about who our soldiers are and the sacrifices that they made for our freedom.

Teaching kids the meaning of Independence Day makes the holiday even more special! Check out our tips for breaking it down in a way they can understand!

Take your kids to some historical sites– If you live in a place that contains historical sites, these are great places to take your children to visit. It will help them better understand what the real meaning is behind the 4th of July. In the US, much of the Northeast coast is full of areas that were involved in the Revolutionary War. In Canada, you could take your kids to one of the original provinces that started the nation! These include Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario. Fun fact, the last two were originally just called “The Canada province,” but they later split.

Talk to your kids about the flag and its meaning– Just about every single country in the world has its own flag, and that flag has a story behind it. In the US, our story is about Betsy Ross! While some say she didn’t really make the flag, it’s still part of our flag’s history. Learn about your nation’s flag, then share that knowledge with your kids!

These are a few easy ways to teach kids the meaning of Independence Day. Other ways include renting movies about the times leading up to your nation’s declaration of Independence, visiting museums (for those who don’t live near historical landmarks) and even making different fun patriotic crafts! Knowing the meaning of Independence Day makes the day even more special, don’t you think?

Do you have any other parenting tips for teaching kids the meaning of Independence day? Share in the comments!

17 thoughts on “Fun Ways to Teach Kids the Meaning of Independence Day”

  1. These are some great tips on how to sneak in alittle 4th of July history!!! Since I was a history major in college, I just love it!

  2. It’s almost good to teach kids the meaning behind holidays so they can truly appreciate them. I really like the 4th of July! Who doesn’t love fireworks and BBQ <3

  3. What great suggestions. I’m not in the US, but it goes the same for us in Canada when teaching kiddos about Canada Day and Canada’s history! I was surprised to learn schools didn’t teach them much about it!

  4. I learned most about my country’s independence day from my classes in school. More than the fireworks, the festivities, and for us it’s a holiday, I think it’s important to make kids appreciate the freedom that our countries are all enjoying today. Taking kids to historical sites is a great idea as well as explaining what the flag symbolizes as well as what the elements in the flag represent.

  5. I will admit that I have never had the chat about what July 4th mean. This is such a great reminder and tips for me this week. I am definitely going to come up with up with fun craft for this weekend.

  6. These are awesome tips for parents to teach their children the meaning of Independence Day. I love the idea of getting age appropriate books for the kids. My grandfather would always dress in his uniform and march in the parade every year. Thanks so much for sharing.

  7. I think it’s a great idea to teach kids about Independence day. Nowaways, I feel like a lot of kids just see it as only a time for celebration, and fireworks. Which is fun, but I feel like they should know the real meaning behind it.

  8. Independence Day used to be my favorite holiday….I love the fireworks and what the holiday stands for. Over the years I’ve also made it represent my own independence from things in my past. I definitely will teach its meaning to my children.

  9. I think it’s a great idea to teach kids the meaning of the 4th of July. These are all fun ways to teach them. I also think it’s important to teach them how to properly display the flag.

  10. It’s always to good to sneak in a little education whenever possible. Independence Day is a great time to foster some conversations with the kids and help facilitate a little meaning-making!

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