Reasons for Memorials

Without a doubt, one of the most beautiful memorials, especially as it is lighted at night, is the Lincoln Memorial. It is truly breathtaking.

Many students may not understand the meaning or reasoning behind a memorial. This a great time to introduce a President of United States who served in a time that most children have no conception of. The nation was still severely divided over the Civil War. All men may have been created equally, but they certainly were not treated equally.

Online there is an excellent virtual tour. Students can go through the entire building, see the murals, and read the material. It is interesting to see the states that are listed on the building.

Talk about different opinions  that people had of Lincoln. Not everyone though he was a great man. In fact, he was assassinated. While assassinating someone is not an acceptable behavior. Americans cherish their rights to have different opinions and the great opportunity to have the freedom of speech.

Talk about the meetings and gatherings that have taken place at the Lincoln Memorial. Why did those people choose that place?

Henry Bacon was the designer of the memorial. Talk to children about what people they would like to build a memorial to and what kind of building they would design. Each student can pick someone to design their memorial for. Each day three or four different memorials will be displayed on the bulletin board.

Once all the students have displayed their building, have them display one mural or story they would want in their memorial. Many primary students will put a lot of thought into this project and get a lot of help from home.  Be sure and take pictures as the bulletin board changes so you have a timeline to display.

Finally, before taking down the bulletin board and moving on to other ideas invite some special guests who have visited the Lincoln Memorial and have them share their experience, feelings and pictures. They may have something from the writings of Lincoln they would like to share. Give them free reign.

A bulletin should be a reminder of something that is important and happening in the class. Learning about our Presidents and history is an important part of an education. Just last year in a 2nd grade class in Utah this very bulletin board was used. All she know was that President Obama was a lot like Lincoln and his house was somewhere in the same neighborhood.  It was nice to broaden her horizons.