This lesson provides cultural and historical background information for EL students on Veteran’s Day. It focuses on listening and writing skills. There are four videos and the handout asks students questions about the videos and encourages written responses. The last prompt asks the students to reflect on what they've learned about Veteran's Day. As an extension students can write Thank You notes to Veterans.
Warm up: Engage students by asking them if they know what Veteran’s Day is? Or if they know of any Veterans? Elicit any information.
Video 1: Have students watch “Veterans Day Facts for Kids” (You Tube) which gives students some background information (Distribute handout - have students listen and fill in the blanks while watching, go over answers together as a class)
Video 2: Have students watch another background video which is faster from the History Channel “Bet You Didn't Know: Veterans Day” .
(Have students fill out the second chart for video 2 while watching, they can check their answers with a partner before you go over the answers with the whole class)
Video 3: Have students watch the third video which features kids talking about their military families. “Youth Reflect on Parents’ Military Careers”
(Have students complete the section on the handout for video 3 - do not need to go over answers, however, monitor to make sure students are on task).
As a class, brainstorm the risks and benefits of being a soldier today (create a t-chart) and scribe student responses. Let the class know that they are going to take a closer look at some of the issues that Veterans face today and how these challenges are being treated.
Read to the students the following excerpt: With new medical and life-saving technology more troops are surviving traumatic injuries that would have sealed their fate just decades ago. The effects of the increase in soldiers dealing with severe injuries such as losing limbs, traumatic brain injuries and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has taxed the Veterans Administration (V.A.) at unprecedented levels leaving response time to disability claims anywhere from months to years. Further, both an increase in an aging veteran population as well as female veterans brings new challenges to the V.A. Let’s look more in depth at the issues facing today’s veterans.
Video 4: Have students watch the video on YouTube titled “Veterans’ Disability Delayed.”
(Have students fill in the fourth area pertaining to Video 4 - do not need to go over as a group, but monitor)
Writing activity (on their handout - last box) : In a short paragraph in the last box of your handout, write a reflection on what you’ve learned about Veteran’s Day. What new perspectives were given to you from the videos you watched today? Did any of this information make you feel differently about Veteran’s Day? Give examples from the videos to explain your points.
Please collect their handouts when they are done and have students do the extension activity if there is time. If not, we can do it Tuesday.
Last Activity/Extension: If there is time, please write a thank you note to a Veteran. yhou can send Thank You cards to Operation Gratitude. You can go to this site to give them a visual of the organization: