Friday, November 8, 2013

District of Columbia War Memorial

Visiting Washington, D.C. # 2 – Memorials

A tour of Washington involves remembering those who have died.
I walked through the children’s exhibit in the Holocaust Museum and read the child’s version of Nazi Germany. At the end, while I viewed a representation of a prison camp, a child in front of me sobbed intensely. I will never forget the sound. Children need to know about war and understand why our country has fought, but how can we convey it without exposing them to too much evil?

One way is to pray and seek God’s help before visiting the memorials. Another way is to emphasize the good things. In Washington, many veterans or active duty soldiers visit in their uniforms. Some are in wheelchairs because of injuries or their age. Make homemade cards before your trip to Washington to give to these veterans and say thank you.

Children need to be able to connect the dots between the memorials and what those men did for our country. The terrible suffering represented by the memorials gave our country and other countries, FREEDOM.


This is an activity to help children understand the time sequence of the wars and why we have memorials.

Discussion questions: What is the name of some of the wars our country fought? Who fought? Who won? Have you ever been to a cemetery? What does it look like? Why are there stones with names on them? What is a memorial? Have you ever seen a memorial? Where and who was it honoring? Why would someone want to erect a memorial?

----Make a torn paper book. Start at one corner of legal-sized paper and tear diagonally to three inches above the opposite corner. Fold back and forth, ending up with five two-inch spaces, like making a fan. Start at the bottom and write the names of the wars in order on each section. Under that write the dates they took place. Older children can fill in extra details. Legal-size paper gives younger children more space to write in. Of course, there are other wars. I tried to keep this simple. Winning sides are underlined

Civil War 1861-65 Union (North United States) vs. Confederacy (South United States )          
W. W. I 1914-18 Germany, Italy, Austria-Hungary vs. Britain, France, Russia United States
W. W. II 1939-45 Germany, Italy, Japan vs. Great Britain, France, Russia, United States  
Korean War 1950-53 North Korea, Communist China vs. United Nations, South Korea, United States
(no winner)
Vietnam War 1960-75 North Vietnam vs. South Vietnam, United States

----Search for Washington D.C. Memorial images online and show your children pictures.

U.S. Grant Memorial (Civil War)

District of Columbia War Memorial (World War I)

World War II Memorial

Korean War Veterans Memorial

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Torn Paper Book

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