Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Remembrance Day Ideas for Primary

Although November 11th is sombre day of reflection, even our youngest learners are able to understand its significance and participate in age appropriate ways to commemorate Remembrance Day.  I want to thank my friend Kristy from 2 Peas and a Dog for hosting this Remembrance Day linky.  I hope you come away from it with some amazing new ideas to use with your students this month!
Remembrance Day holds a dear place in my heart.  I am especially proud of the role that my great-grandfather, Percy Griffith Davies, played as a Major in the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada based in Toronto during the Great War of 1914-1918.  

The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada was a regiment headed by Sir Henry Pellatt, the multi-millionaire who built Casa Loma.  Before WWI, my great-grandfather was his Personal Secretary.  Great-Grandpa Percy took a battalion overseas and fought in the battle of Vimy Ridge in Normandy, France.  He survived and returned to Canada to bring up his young family in Toronto and lived to be 100 years old.
There are a few activities that I find myself doing year after year with my second graders because they are so tried and true.  In the days leading up to Remembrance Day, we create a wreath of poppies for the assembly with our older Learning Buddies, make paper wreaths to hang from our classroom ceiling and paint poppy masterpieces for our bulletin board.  The last two of those activities can be found in the TPT product below.
I also fill my classroom library up with as many picture books as I can get my hands on about WWI, WWII or peace before November 11th .  

Last year I came across two outstanding books that I had never seen before. BONUS: they are available ==>now<== in November 2016's Grades 2&3 Reading Club flyer.  
 Grades 2 & 3 Scholastic Reading Club, November 2016
Bunny the Brave War Horse by Elizabeth MacLeod and The Soldier's Puppy (also known under title "The Anzac Puppy") by Peter Millett and Trish Bowles are both incredibly touching stories. Although they deal with hardship and war, the books convey an underlying message of hope, love and loyalty. Your students will fall in love with the true tales of Bunny and Freda the dog. 
You can grab this FREEBIE I made for Bunny the Brave War Horse by clicking on the picture below.
What are your favourite Remembrance Day picture books?  I'd love to hear your suggestions in the comments below.

All the best,


  1. These are amazing ideas! I love the wreaths and masterpieces, and those stories are wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Wow... can't believe your great grandpa fought at Vimy - that's an amazing story to share with your students.

    1. I know...it's incredible! My parents still have his ceremonial sword which is very impressive. I've been to Vimy Ridge and I got a special behind the scenes tour there thanks to him. He was also on the Canadian Rowing Team.

  3. Thank you for sharing the freebie for Bunny the Brave War Horse! Appreciate it!

  4. Thanks for the book ideas from Scholastic. It's always so hard to find Remembrance Day stories that are appropriate for primary-aged students.

  5. I'm a year late but have you ever read Bear At War by Stephanie Innes and Harry Endrulat?