Presidents’ Day Speech and Language Opportunities

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presidents-day-speech-activityThe President of the United States is an important individual for students to learn about. Too often, we focus on the days off of school for Presidents’ Day and never talk about the history of the presidents who have come before President Obama. This is the perfect time of year to discuss the history of the holiday, the role, of the president, and other important individuals from our country’s past and present.

 

Books About the Presidents

There are many books that talk about specific presidents, the history of Presidents’ Day, and also add a bit of fun when characters decide to run for the office. The possibilities for discussion are wide open and can include popular topics like George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, the White House, and more. Some options to use during speech and language are:

  • Presidents’ Day – by Anne Rockwell
  • Lives of the Presidents – by Kathleen Krull
  • Duck for President – by Doreen Cronin
  • So You Want to Be President? – by Judith St. George
  • Hail to the Chief – by Don Robb
  • The Story of Abraham Lincoln – by Patricia A. Pingry
  • The Story of George Washington – by Patricia A. Pingry

After reading books, take time to talk about what everyone learned and more information that they would like to find out. Create a group K-W-L chart. This is a great activity to boost listening comprehension, encourage expressive language use, and give the opportunity for children to formulate questions.  If you read about multiple presidents, you could also have a giant Venn diagram to work similarities and differences between the men.

Inside Lincoln’s Hat

Younger children will adore making their own version of Lincoln’s famous top hat. Make a stencil for the kids to use. Next, have everyone trace that on a large sheet of black construction paper and have kids cut that out. Give everyone a long strip of white paper to place inside the long portion of the hat. Select items to place inside of Lincoln’s hat. These could be photos of word families, articulation practice, vocabulary, or anything else within a child’s speech and language goals. To make it more fun, you can make a black flap to lift up and hide the items inside. Kids can take the hats home for practice. Be sure to send a note and list for family members to assist multilingual learners.

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