Memorial Day - Classroom Activities, Lessons and Printables

What Is Memorial Day and Why Do We Celebrate It?

Memorial Day is an important national holiday which honors and remembers those who died serving in the U.S. military. Once known as Decoration Day, this holiday originated following the American Civil War, when many cities held observances in May for the families of soldiers killed in battle, and citizens placed flowers on the graves of the loved ones they’d lost. Following World War I, its name changed to Memorial Day and the day was used to honor those lost in all American wars. Memorial Day celebrations can include parades held in towns and cities across the country, visits to cemeteries or memorials as well as social and family gatherings over the Memorial Day weekend.

When Is Memorial Day 2022?

Originally observed on May 30 every year, Memorial day is now observed on the last Monday in May. This was changed in 1971 to allow for a three-day weekend to be created. Memorial Day 2022 will take place on Monday, May 30.

How to Celebrate Memorial Day in the Classroom

Incorporate these Memorial Day worksheets, activities and printables into your curriculum to honor the men and women who lost their lives in American wars. Help your students to understand the significance of Memorial Day with lesson plans and teaching resources for learning about the U.S. Civil War, World War I, World War II and the Vietnam War, as well as the heroes and heroines who have served the country in various ways. These reading comprehension activities are a great opportunity to expand students’ knowledge and patriotic art activities are a fun way for students to help decorate your classroom ready for this holiday.

Educational Videos
View our short videos about Memorial Day and extend your students' knowledge with the extension activities prepared for each video.
Printables
Your students will enjoy learning about Memorial Day with these printables. Includes a reading passage on the origins of Memorial Day, a writing exercise, and more.
Lesson Plans
Our Lesson Plans will help students understand Memorial Day with activities such as reading a poem for the day and writing a class newspaper about armed conflicts the U.S. has been involved in.
References
Refer to our resources on Memorial Day to enhance your lessons and expand students' learning.
Art, Music, & Drama Activities for Memorial Day
Add these fun activities, such as filling in the blanks with words to patriotic songs, to enhance your Memorial Day lessons.
Memorial Day Language Arts Activities
Choose from these activities to help students expand their knowledge. Includes reading passages with comprehension questions and more.
U.S. Flag Resources
Help students learn about the flag of the United States as a Memorial Day activity. Includes the flag's history and display requirements.
Other Memorial Day Resources
If you enjoyed these resources for Memorial Day, click the links below on our resources for more patriotic activities.
Choice Boards
Give your students the power of choice with these 9-activity choice boards focused on Memorial Day writing, reading, and research.
Heroes & Heroines Resources
Teach your students about current and past citizens, as well as military personnel, who have served the United States in various ways with our resources.
U.S. Civil War Resources
Expand your teaching strategies using our resources. Includes warm-ups, and reference information, as well as, an activity that divides your classroom and helps students learn hands-on about the Civil War.
World War I Resources
Students will be engaged learning about World War I with our resources. Includes a word search puzzle on major battles, a writing activity, and internet research about propaganda.
World War II Resources
Investigate World War II and increase your students' knowledge using our resources which include reading passages with activities, a printable book containing activities, and much more.
Vietnam War Resources
Discuss and help students understand the Vietnam War time period using these reading passages, critical thinking writing activities, and more.
War Resources for Social Studies Class
These War Resources for Social Studies Class will help your students learn what is defined as a "war" or "warlike", as well as, help you teach students about difficult events that take place in the U.S. and around the world.

Recommended Memorial Day Resources

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