Freedom is precious. It’s important. And it’s often taken for granted. Most of us enjoy freedom without having to sacrifice for it. There are many individuals and families who have made sacrifices to maintain our freedom, though, and there are those who continue to sacrifice for the rest of us. This 4th of July game was created for that reason–to help us illustrate to our children the importance of appreciating and valuing the freedoms we have and to understand that freedom really isn’t free. (Yes, it’s a cliché, but it’s absolutely true! And our children need to know it.)
This 4th of July game gives adults a way to illustrate to our children how precious our freedom is and how easily it can be toppled without faith, care, and appreciation.
Children will compete in teams to see who has enough patience and strength to collapse all of the cups as smoothly as possible.
Have each child (or each team) build a tower out of index cards and plastic cups. They’ll need to build their towers at least five feet apart to prevent accidentally knocking over the opposing child’s/team’s tower. The following illustrations show how to build the tower.
Start by placing a plastic cup rim-side down onto a sturdy table. Place an index card on the cup after the cup is in place.
Repeat that step until you have two towers. Each tower should consist of five cups and four index cards.
You can see in the picture above that there is not an index card on the top of the stack. Index cards should only be placed between cups.
Explain to your children that we are celebrating another year of America’s independence and that we want to remember how, many years ago, we had to earn our independence through hard battles and sacrifices. You might want to explain that we still have people who give their lives to make sure America remains free.
Today we’re going to play a game that will show us how important it is to value our freedom and treat it with care because, if we don’t, it is possible for our freedom to topple just like our towers of cups and cards.
1. If possible, divide the children into two even teams (or have two children serve as opposing teams). 2. Have teams form a line behind each stack of cups and index cards. 3. When you say, “Go!” the first child will have to remove the top index card in the stack. 4. If the whole stack tumbles down, he or she must rebuild it and go to the end of the line. 5. If he or she is able to remove the card without toppling the tower (The top cup should collapse onto the next cup in the stack.), the child moves to the end of the line. 6. The game continues until one team has successfully collapsed its stack.
Discuss the fact that, as they played the game, the children had to be very careful when they pulled the index cards out from between the cups. Ask them questions prompting them to explain what happened when they weren’t careful. (The tower toppled.) What happened if they didn’t take their responsibility seriously and tried to work too fast or without paying careful attention? (The tower toppled.)
Talk about the fact that each tower represented our freedoms both as a country and as Christians. If we aren’t careful and don’t treat our freedoms with dignity and defend them with care, the whole thing could topple.
What does it mean to treat our freedoms with care and dignity? (Let your children answer and give guidance as needed.) We should value our freedom and take it seriously. We should stand up for our rights and freedoms and support others who do the same. We should be willing to make sacrifices to remain free because freedom is important!
What does it mean to treat other people with care and dignity? (Again, let them answer and give guidance as needed.) We need to follow the laws of love. We should not hurt each other. We should treat each other with love and care. You may even want to discuss that bad health habits can lead to health problems that impede our freedom of movement and personal independence.
If we don’t value our independence, fail to recognize its worth, and treat it with carelessness, our freedom can topple just like our towers toppled. Leave your children with a sense of hope, though, by explaining that we each have the choice to value our freedom and to value others. If we make the right choice, our freedoms can remain strong and we can stand like tall towers or beacons of hope for others and for our country.
For more 4th of July information and activities, check out these articles!
St. Patrick’s Day is coming up soon! This Irish holiday honors the official patron saint of Ireland. However, the fun traditions of St. Patrick’s Day aren’t limited to Ireland. In fact, St. Patrick’s Day traditions have caught on all over the world! St. Patrick’s Day is now proudly celebrated in many countries, such as the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, and New Zealand.
Whether you are Irish, have Irish ancestors, or are just looking for some festive ways to celebrate the unique culture of Ireland, we’re bringing you some fun and educational activities that you can use to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in your homeschool!
These crafty activities inspire hands-on learning and can be fun for the whole family to try together!
Create a “life-sized” Leprechaun hat with this fun and simple craft that utilizes those used up K Cups in your kitchen!
This shamrock wire bookmark is beautiful and features a very Celtic-inspired design! This would be a great craft to make with older kids, and one that they’ll enjoy using, too!
The rainbow is a popular symbol in St. Patrick’s Day celebrations (after all, it’s where you can find the mythical leprechaun’s pot of gold!) Here are some rainbow-themed projects that combine a little bit of art and science to make some colorful, magical fun.
Create a Saint Patrick’s day masterpiece and teach your little learner about ROYGBIV (color order) using playdough and this printable mat!
This article also contains links to even more crafts and activities that you may enjoy using for St. Patrick’s Day!
Just download and print these educational worksheets out to add some instant St. Patrick’s Day fun to your homeschool!
This shamrock-themed printable offers a great visual aid to help children with multiplying by 3s and 4s!
Use these worksheets to give your child some extra practice counting to 100 with festive, Leprechaun-themed pages.
Teaching young kids about skip-counting? Use these printable shamrock-themed worksheets that they can fill in and color, too!
This article includes links to a variety of downloadable activities: a not-too-hard word search, a grammatical scavenger hunt, and a mad lib activity (all on theme for St. Patrick’s Day, of course!)
Practice different tenses of verbs in a fun way with this Leprechaun-themed grammar printable!
Use this St. Patrick’s Day Adjective Word Wall to introduce your child to adjectives or reinforce learning about parts of speech (or just use them for some St. Patrick’s Day themed spelling words!)
Use this Leprechaun-themed word wall to help teach your child more about action verbs this St. Patrick’s Day! These also make great spelling words for young learners.
This St. Patrick’s Day themed word wall will make it fun and easy for young children to learn about nouns!
This fun and interesting cultural study will get kids involved in learning about the nation of Ireland! This printable has a huge variety of engaging activities that work for a wide range of ages.
It’s funny to think that so many countries around the world celebrate a holiday that honors Ireland’s patron saint, but they do! This printable booklet would fun to read as a family and discover traditions that different places around the world observe on St. Patrick’s Day. Maybe you’ll even find some that you want to try in your homeschool!
These Rainbow Tie-Dye Cupcakes would be the perfect colorful treat to enjoy on St. Patrick’s Day!
This healthier twist on classic Mac & Cheese has hidden treasure (AKA green vegetables) and may just be your new lucky dish for picky eaters.
These thumbprint cookies are fun to make, look at and (of course) eat!
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate (and a pinch of bright green!) You can’t go wrong with these Reverse Chocolate Cookies.
These fun-to-make cupcakes represent the rainbow (on the inside) and the gold (at the top) which are both symbolic of Irish lore!
I hope you and your children have some fun celebrating St. Patrick’s Day while sneaking in some educational benefits using those activities.
It’s the time of year for hearts, flowers and chocolates, and you are probably here because you’re looking for some special ways to celebrate the sweethearts in your life: whether that means your kids, spouse, or friends! Today we are bringing you the biggest collection ever of fun ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day in your home (and, of course, in your homeschool.) Here, you’ll find links to a huge variety of printable Valentine’s Day cards, plenty of Valentine’s Day themed learning activities, and articles with practical tips on how show love and kindness–on Valentine’s Day or any time of year! Enjoy!
From printable valentines for your significant other, to crafty Valentine’s Day cards to assemble with your kids, we have all different kinds of printable valentines for you to enjoy.
It’s always a nice surprise for your significant other when you make the time to show some extra thoughtfulness. This printable includes two weeks worth of cute and sweet valentines that you can print out and share with your spouse or sweetie in the days leading up to Valentine’s Day.
This fun DIY activity includes adorable printable components and instructions so that kids can make their own woodland animal themed Valentine’s Day cards . These are perfect cards for kids to make and share with other kids!
This collection has all kinds of fun hands-on Valentine’s Day activities (some of them mentioned other places in this list, and some not). Explore it to find some creative activities to use in your homeschool this month!
Valentine’s Day-Related Lessons and Units
If you’re wanting to bring some heart-day cheer into everyday lessons, you can use the activities and units below as part of your homeschool line up over the next few weeks!
Give your kids extra practice with recognizing nouns by using this printable word wall that features Valentine’s Day-inspired ones! Use this word wall in conjunction with the two listed above (verbs and adjective word walls) and play a game where your child can sort each word into a group based on what part of speech it is.
This classic flavor gets a quick makeover! These cake pops are kid-friendly and fun to make.
Random Acts of Kindness for Valentine’s Day (or Any Time!)
Being kind is always cool, and it’s one of the most important things we can do to show our love to others. Here are a few articles about showing kindness to others (and helping our kids to do the same).
Are you going to stay up until midnight to welcome the new year? Or will you celebrate early and then get a good night’s sleep? Whether you’re a night owl who loves to stay up until the new year begins or whether you’re a morning person who would rather get some sleep and greet the new year the next morning, we have a collection of family New Year’s Eve activities that will help you and your kids have a great time counting down the hours until the new year (or until bedtime…we won’t tell!).
Celebrating New Year’s Eve at Home with the Kids
Most of you who are reading this article have children. Many of you have young children. I know some young children are night owls and do great staying up late to ring in the new year. When my children were younger, though, all they did late at night was get grouchy! Whether you have children who want to party the night away on December 31 or whether your kids need to be in bed at a decent time to avoid a meltdown, our article, Celebrating New Year’s Eve at Home with the Kids has some great suggestions for you!
Family New Year’s Eve Activities
We asked moms in the Hip Homeschool Moms Facebook Community for their favorite suggestions for ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day with their children, and they gave us lots (and lots!) of great ideas! In our article, New Year’s Eve Activities for Families, you’ll find a list of activities that different families do to celebrate, and you’ll also find a list of foods eat during your celebration at home. Where I live in the South, we eat cabbage (for money) and blackeyed peas (for good luck) on New Year’s Day, but other families made lots of other fun suggestions! You might want to borrow some other families’ traditions, or you might be inspired to come up with your own!
New Year’s Firecracker Papercraft Wand
Making these super cute New Year’s Firecracker Papercraft Wands is a great family New Year’s Eve activity. In fact, this is a perfect activity for either New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day! You probably have everything you need to make them, or you can make substitutions if you don’t have quite everything you need. Make them with your kids at a New Year’s Eve party, or make them on New Year’s Day and enjoy welcoming the new year by getting crafty!
Making a Memory Jar
This fun and simple activity can be done on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day and continued throughout the year! It really is an easy activity with no special equipment or supplies needed. And the best part is that, if you choose to make a memory jar for your family, you’ll be blessed by it over and over all year and again at the end of the year or the beginning of next year! This article will explain how and why you might want to try Making a Memory Jar with your family this year.
Play Boredom Busting Bingo
Our Boredom Busting Bingo game will keep your kids busy for hours! You can do some of the activities that can be done in minutes or hours, or you might choose to keep the fun going and start your game on New Year’s Eve and finish it in the future (a few days or a week from now). It’s up to you! You’ll find links to everything you need for an evening (or a week!) of fun with your kiddos! NOTE: For any activities that are “pay what you can,” simply put 0.00 in the space so you can get your printables for free.
Start a Tradition of Saving Money with This Printable Savings Tracker
Whether you want to spend some time cooking with your kids on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day or whether you’d like for your children to start helping with cooking some family meals next year, these recipes, cooking activities, and cooking journals are what you need! All of the printables, journals, and activities are free to download and print at the time of publication of this article and for at least a week afterward, so be sure to download them now before they go back to regular price!
Counting Candies on Cookies Math Cards
If you’d like to sneak in some educational fun and make a sweet treat to share during your New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day celebration, you’ll love our Counting Candies on Cookies Math Cards activity on our sister site, Only Passionate Curiosity! Not only is cookie baking itself an educational activity, but you can print our math cards to go along with the recipe and make the activity even more educational! You’ll find the recipe link in the article, so there’s no need to go searching for a cookie recipe.
Cooking Journals for Boys and Girls
If you’d like to do some cooking with your kiddos on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day or if you’d like to encourage your children to help prepare family meals next year, these cooking journals will help make it more fun! Grab your Cooking Journals for Boys and Girls and enjoy having some help in the kitchen while your kids are developing some important life skills.
Do you make New Year’s resolutions? If you do (or even if you don’t!), I’ve put together some of our best articles about goals vs. resolutions, how to decide if you want to make resolutions or set goals for the new year, information about some stress-free resolutions you might want to consider, and even information about why you might choose not to make New Year’s resolutions in this article, Should You Make New Year’s Resolutions?
Hi everyone! It’s that time of the year again! Holiday season is upon us and I have a few fun things we’ve done over the years to help you celebrate the season.
I have a great preschool Thanksgiving pack for those younger ones that’s not only fun, but also educational! Click here to download the Thanksgiving Preschool Pack.
One of our favorite activities is this Homemade Leaf Coaster craft! It’s super easy and a lot of fun, and I think they make great decorations for your holiday place settings too!
We also made this fun thankful turkey craft. you can make it out of foam sheets or construction paper. Then write a few thins you’re thankful for on each feather.Click here for more information on the Thankful Turkey Craft.
Who doesn’t love a good Thanksgiving placemat craft? This one is super easy, and you can even have the pieces prepared in advance so kids can create their own placemat while waiting for Thanksgiving dinner! Click here to see how to make these fun placemats!
Mosaic art is not only fun, but great for fine-motor skills! We printed out a free cornucopia coloring page, then tore up a bunch of construction paper. Then pasted it to the printout to make a fun Mosaic Cornucopia Craft.
The Turkey Buttoning activity is great for working on fine motor skills, color matching, and letter identification!
We hope you all have a happy, safe, and wonderful Thanksgiving!