Each new school year, on the first day of school, I teach my preschoolers the Pledge of Allegiance. Most of them come in knowing the US flag. They either call it “the flag” or blurt out “America” when I ask them what it is. (So far no one has said “Play Ball!!!” but it’s coming, I just know it.)
Patriotism is not nearly as popular today as it was when I was a little girl. I am glad to be an American. If I had been born in the UK or Canada or Australia or wherever, I’d be proud of that country but I was born here and it makes me glad.
So, the three things I teach my students above all are 1) how to pray 2) the Pledge of Allegiance and 3) the all-important “how to cut with scissors”– inspiring huh? Of course, we learn to take turns, to be kind, the ABC’s etc but those are my top three.
To support our lesson, we did a simple craft: the American Flag.
My students are 3 and 4 years old. Glue sticks and following directions are brand new to them, so I made this first project very simple.
Each child was given an outline of the flag (link below) and three pre-cut red stripes plus one blue rectangle. Their task was to glue the stripes and rectangle on the paper using a glue stick. Then we adults put little dots of Elmer’s glue on the field of blue and they placed Cheerios cereal to be the stars. Stars and stripes — The American Flag!
Only one student ate her Cheerios. When I showed up at her seat, I looked all over and playfully said, “Arista? Did I forget to give you Cheerios?” Impish grin. “Did you EAT your Cheerios?” Impish grin again. “Just a minute, I’ll get you some more.” Cuter than cute.
American Flag Craft with Cheerios
American Flag template printed on white cardstock
Red and Blue sheets of construction paper
Cheerios dry cereal
Print the template of the flag on cardstock.
Print the same template on regular copy paper to make a pattern for cutting.
Take the copy printed on plain paper and cut out the pieces to use as a pattern for cutting the red and blue parts of your flag.
Cut out 3 stripes of red paper to fit the lines on the page*
Cut out a blue rectangle the size of the space on the page for the field of blue.
Using glue stick, paste the blue field in the upper left corner of the cardstock template.
Now, glue the red stripes onto the page.
Notice there is one red stripe shorter than the other two.*
Now, dot the blue field with dots of Elmer’s glue and place a Cheerio on each one. Mine is not historically accurate. I used 12 Cheerios. Of course, we have 50 states.
Now, here is an idea, if you want to make yours a Betsy Ross flag, use 13 Cheerios in a big circle!