Memorial Day is a day when we acknowledge and honor those who have lost their lives while serving in the United States Armed Forces. While young children may not fully understand the reasons behind this holiday celebration, we can lead by example and teach them with fun activities and historical facts. We believe knowledge is power! Our suggestions are ‘kid-friendly’! Plus…we’ve also included a special dessert recipe for Memorial Day sure to please everyone.

• Fly the red, white and blue. If you don’t have an American flag, help the kids make their own flags from construction paper and staple them onto straws for flying. Teach older children how to fly and fold the flag. Whatever you do, just display one and show your support.

• Visit a national cemetery. Consider taking the children to visit the graves of fallen heroes. Bring flowers to lie on a grave or attend a memorial service. While it may seem grim, the reality is that even young children know people die. Helping them to understand some people die bravely protecting our country may help to give meaning to why we honor them.

• Send a care package to a soldier. Honor those living heroes who risk their lives to protect our country by sending a card or care package to them. is a website that helps citizens connect with soldiers who are currently serving.

• Sing a patriotic song. Long gone are the days where children sing the Star Spangled Banner or America the Beautiful. Teach your children the words and tunes to some of our nation’s favorites.

• Make an “American themed” dessert, like a fruit (strawberry and blueberry) and yogurt parfait or cake decorated like a flag. If someone you know is a veteran, invite them over to share.

Red, White and Blue Parfaits

Makes 6 servings

You can substitute raspberry or strawberry low-fat yogurt for the vanilla ice cream in these easy-to-make fruit parfaits…perfect for your patriotic party.

1 8 ounce carton vanilla ice cream or low-fat yogurt
1/4 teaspoon almond extract or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 8 ounce container frozen light whipped dessert topping, thawed
3 cups fresh raspberries and/or cut-up fresh strawberries
3 cups fresh blueberries

In a large bowl, stir together ice cream or yogurt and almond/or vanilla extract. Fold in whipped topping. To serve, alternate layers of the berries with layers of the yogurt mixture, and place in six 12-ounce glasses or dessert dishes.

How will you be spending Memorial Day? Do you have any kid-friendly family traditions to share with us?

*Portions of article reprinted from: &