With Presidents’ Day quickly approaching, it’s time to think about how we can incorporate the holiday into our lesson plans. I recommend using Presidents’ Day reading and writing activities. This is a simple way to ensure you’re both covering your content standards, and including holiday background into your instruction!
Reading Activities About the Presidents’ Day Holiday
Learning about the holiday can be fun, especially when we start with engaging read alouds. We want our kiddos to learn about George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and why we celebrate Presidents’ Day in the first place! Additionally, you should add books that allow your students to connect, like If I Ran for President and Ellie May on Presidents’ Day. Any of these themed stories can be used to teach your current ELA content skills, like story retelling, content vocabulary, character traits, inferring, etc.
These three book links are affiliate links to Amazon!
- Presidents’ Day by Anne Rockwell
- Ellie May on Presidents’ Day by Hillary Homzie
- If I Ran for President by Catherine Stier
Another way to introduce the holiday is with instructional videos. BrainPOP and BrainPOP, Jr. have great videos on presidents and their duties. These will help your student understand what a president’s job is and what it takes to be a president! I usually recommend using BrainPOP, Jr. for your primary (K-3) kiddos and BrainPOP for the intermediate students (4-5). However, this will depend on your students’ needs!
Shift To Individual Presidents Reading Activities
After your introduction to Presidents’ Day, you will want to shift your instruction. Now, you can use reading activities to focus on individual presidents. As students read and learn about Geroge Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and even President Joe Biden, they can be applying important nonfiction reading skills.
The picture above is a snapshot of some of the activities included in my Presidents’ Day Mini-Unit. There is a mini-book, research activity, snip and flipbook, and a cut-and-paste timeline. They are simple and engaging for students and can be used for whole-group, small group, partner work, centers, or independent work time. These are a few of the Presidents’ Day reading and writing activities included in the unit, which covers Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and our current president, Joe Biden.
Writing Activities for Presidents’ Day
Similarly, I would recommend using writing activities for Presidents’ Day. Students can practice their research and informational writing easily. They can even practice word choice and rhythm with poetry writing!
I don’t know about your students, but mine have always been excited to write to the president or write about being the president! Creating real-life writing experiences will motivate your students and focus their writing skills. Plus, they require little more than a pencil and paper!
Make Your Learning Work Virtually
If you’re looking for digital Presidents’ Day reading and writing activities, think presentation time! I know I have recommended FLIPGRID before, and I will do it again! This is perfect for digital inclusion or virtual instruction. Each of your students can make their own FLIPGRID presentation to present to the class. This project will involve reading, research, writing, speaking and listening, and more! Students can create a project about a specific president, one you’ve studied in class, or even one that is significant to them. To make it interactive, require your students to view others’ presentations, commenting and providing feedback.
Finally, if you’re still teaching in a virtual or hybrid setting, the digital version of these activities are here for you! All of the units I have linked will included digital, ready to share activities. Your students can work on them from anywhere! And you can, too!
Suggested Reading & Writing Activities You Will Love!
If you’re looking for ready-to-go resources for Presidents’ Day, look no further. The four linked below are all great additions to your Presidents’ Day instruction. First, the Presidents’ Day Mini History Unit is the most all-inclusive. It contains reading and writing activities for George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and President Joe Biden. Next, there is a reading flip book that is All About Presidents. The last two are specific to Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. Each contains a read and write flip book, printable comprehension passage, cut and paste timeline, research, and writing pages.
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