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How I Want My Students To Honor America's Veterans

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 11/11/2015 JD Wilson
CLASSROOM © Klaus Vedfelt via Getty Images CLASSROOM

Dear Class,
Today is Veterans Day...all day. Yes, we are still having math and no, I'm not giving you extra time at recess.
Traditionally on Veterans Day, you hear buzz words being thrown around like "courage," "honor" and "bravery."
But what do these words really mean? And what can you, as a fourth grader, do today to truly honor a veteran?
As your teacher, I have been given a tremendous opportunity here; an opportunity to teach you something you won't find written in my lesson plans.
The objective for today's lesson is simply: give your all.
On this Veterans Day, let's keep our red, white, and blue crayons in our desks; you will not be coloring the same American flag you make every year.
On this Veterans Day, you will not be writing the words "Thank You" in bubble letters on piece of construction paper. It won't be taped up in the hallway until the turkey hands take over.
On this Veterans Day, I challenge each and every one of you to push aside those traditional holiday frills and just give your all.
Give your all during calendar math. While we count how many days we have been in school, I want you to think about all of the moms or dads serving overseas, sitting in their barracks counting how many days they have been away from their families.
Give your all in writing. While we revise our Realistic Fiction drafts, I want you to think about the other kids your age who are drafting letters to parents or siblings they haven't seen in months.
Give your all in social studies. As you casually flip your textbook pages, remember these pages were once blank. These brave men and women earned residency in this book, became a part of our history, through their brave actions and courageous contributions to this country.
Give your all in science. As we observe the changes in temperature, think about the soldiers in the Middle East who regularly endure 120-degree weather.
Today is Veteran's Day...all day.
If you truly want to thank a veteran this year, simply give your all in everything you do. You don't need to be a veteran to be a part of this day.
In fact, I like to think most veterans gave their all because they knew you were are back yours.
Now let's get to work.
Your Teacher,
Mr. W

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