Recognizing Veterans

As Veteran’s Day approaches, it is important to explain to kids why we spend a day recognizing our Veteran’s and honoring them for their service to our country. There are lots of great books about honoring the brave soldiers who have sacrificed for our freedom. To recognize the holiday as a family, I’ve compiled a list of books to share, as well as fun activities to bring them to life.

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Thanking Veterans

Writing Thank you Notes to Veterans. – It’s important to teach our kids to be appreciative of the brave men and women who protect us and fight for us. Remind them of the sacrifices that military personnel make when they serve their country. For older kids, this is a great opportunity to practice letter writing skills. Have them write letters or thank you notes to veterans and active duty military.

Talk to kids about why they are grateful for the service these Veteran’s provided and how it inspires them. You could also have younger kids help to decorate cards and write a message from them on the inside. There are lots of great organizations which coordinate sending cards and letters to active military personnel and veterans. Check out the American Red CrossOperation Gratitude and A Million Thanks for more information on these programs.

Collecting for Veterans – Talk to your kids about ways that they can help show their support and thanks for the military veterans in your own community. Look into local Veterans organizations and find ways to help out. Help kids brainstorm ideas and put them in to action. Maybe you want to donate items from your home, or collect items from your neighborhood to donate. There are so many ways that kids can help in their own community, and maybe meet some local veterans! 

Veteran’s Day Learning

Camouflage  Sensory Bin – This was a really easy sensory bin to put together. We started with plain white rice, food coloring and vinegar. I poured about a cup of rice into a clean plastic container (with a lid) and had my daughter help me squeeze a few drops of food coloring into it. Exact amounts of coloring don’t matter since you will want lots of different shades of green.

I added a teaspoon of vinegar and then closed the lid tight. She had a lot of fun shaking the container all around making sure that each grain was colored. I was super grateful to have our Learning Tower from Little Partners to help with this. It allowed me to have her at the counter with me and she was protected from falling while she shook all around. 

When all of the rice was colored, I poured it onto parchment paper and smoothed it out so it wasn’t in one big pile. I let it dry while we started another batch. I used different amounts of green food coloring in several of the batches, and also added red and blue to a few to give the green a brownish tint.

Once all of the rice had dried (after about an hour), I mixed some plain white rice into the mix and added it to our sensory bin. I then added funnels, cups and little green Army men to it as well. We had a lot of fun playing in the camouflage rice while trying to find the little Army men.

Books to Recognize Veterans

Veterans: Heroes in Our Neighborhood was written by Valerie Pfundstein and illustrated by Aaron Anderson. The child in the story learns that there are people all around his neighborhood that have served in the military. This book is a great way to introduce kids to the importance of recognizing our military veterans and appreciating the service that they have provided.

Don’t Forget, God Bless Our Troops was written by Jill Biden and illustrated by Raúl Colón. This story follows a little girl named Natalie as her father leaves for deployment. Her neighbors and friends do their best to provide comfort, and Natalie and her family send care packages overseas, but nothing can match the joy when her father returns home. 

The Wall was written by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Ronald Himler. In this story, a young boy and his father visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and search for his grandfather’s name. The beautifully illustrated book reminds readers of the sacrifices that many soldiers have made, as well as the effect of those sacrifices on military families.

Learn about the history behind the Poppy!

The Poppy Lady: Moina Belle Michael and Her Tribute to Veterans was written by Barbara Walsh and illustrated by Layne Johnson. This brightly illustrated book tells the story of Moina Belle Michael. She was a school teacher from Georgia who wanted to help the soldiers fighting in World War I.

Inspired by a poem she read, she decided to distribute poppy flowers as a symbol of remembrance. This book explains how the tradition of the poppy flower came to be and all the good it has done for veterans.

H is For Honor: A Military Family Alphabet was written by Devin Scillian and illustrated Victor Juhasz. This alphabet book introduces the reader to the various military branches, as well as parts of military life through rhyming text and detailed sidebar information. The bright illustrations and rhyming text will engage young kids, while the detailed explanations in the sidebars will help older kids to get a better understanding of the military.

How does your family recognize Veteran’s Day? Do you have any favorite books to share on the day? Share in the comments!


  • Jordan | Read. Eat. Repeat.

    October 26, 2017 at 7:58 am Reply

    These are great ideas for teaching our kids about veterans and how and why we should value them. Thanks!

    • Vicki

      October 26, 2017 at 12:41 pm Reply

      Thanks! I wanted to start teaching her young while still having fun with her learning.

  • Tanvi Rastogi

    October 26, 2017 at 5:16 pm Reply

    What an amazing idea to make kids aware of how and why they should honor the veterans. You are smart to teach them young. They are like a sponge at that age.


    • Vicki

      October 26, 2017 at 8:38 pm Reply

      Thank you! It is so important to me that she learns these things young, so they will be a part of her.

  • Courtney Byers

    October 26, 2017 at 8:51 pm Reply

    This is great! I love the lessons you teach your children. I work at a retirement community and we do a huge ceremony each year to honor veterans and it honestly gets me so emotional each time. I have so much respect for them.

    • Vicki

      October 26, 2017 at 10:47 pm Reply

      That’s awesome! Ceremonies like that always make me emotional as well.

  • Ruth Ridley

    October 27, 2017 at 7:15 am Reply

    Pinning this for the kids! We need to get into these books and teach them these things from a young age!!

    • Vicki

      October 27, 2017 at 1:00 pm Reply

      I’m so glad! I definitely want my daughter to understand it from very young!

  • Heather ♥

    October 27, 2017 at 9:11 am Reply

    We are a homeschooling family, I love your tips for teaching children about Veterans.

    • Vicki

      October 27, 2017 at 1:00 pm Reply

      Thank you! I hope you have fun with them!

  • Adree | The Keele Deal

    October 31, 2017 at 8:49 am Reply

    Awesome ideas for helping our kids understand the importance of remembering our veterans. I need to check out some of these books. The military alphabet sounds like one my little man would love.

    • Vicki

      October 31, 2017 at 12:37 pm Reply

      It’s really full of information, so it’s great for a range of ages!

  • […] are some lovely activities to recognize Veterans Day from a fellow blogger in my tribes, Babies to Bookworms. I love the camouflage sensory bin idea! I […]

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