Teaching Civics with Children’s Literature: The Pledge of Allegiance

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Saying the pledge of allegiance is something most children do every morning at school.  However, do they truly understand the meaning of these words, or do they simply have it memorized to their brain?  How many times have you heard a child say the words incorrectly?  Scholastic’s The Pledge of Allegiance both teaches students the words to the pledge of allegiance and connects it to the meaning behind them.

The Pledge of Allegiance goes through the pledge, from beginning to end, displaying a phrase on each page. Accompanying this phrase, Scholastic shows a photograph(s) that represent it.  The first page begins, “I pledge allegiance.”  This page also displays four children who have placed their hands over their heart.  My favorite part of this book however, is the last few pages.  Here Scholastic includes two pages that describe the photos and why their importance to the United States and the pledge.  There is also a page that answers important questions about the pledge of allegiance.

What Does the Pledge of Allegiance Mean?
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America…
When we “pledge” allegiance,” we promise to be loyal to our country.

There is also a section on the American flag.  This section lists a number of days that citizens of the United States should especially display the flag.  Scholastic features pictures of the first United States flag and the flag today as well.   Here students can learn about the differences and similarities between the flags and what each part of the flag represents. Finally, The Pledge of Allegiance features a Did You Know… section about the United States flag.

When a flag gets too old to display, it is burned in a special ceremony.

Through the use of bold photographs and their descriptions, The Pledge of Allegiance will surely capture the attention of students.

Curriculum Connections
The Pledge of Allegiance
is a great book to introduce, teach, or reinforce the importance of the pledge of allegiance.  Students will learn how to respect the flag and our country by learning the pledge and understanding its meaning (VA K.9 and 1.1).  This book also shows many important American symbols.  Most importantly, students can gain an overall sense of their responsibilities as an American citizen.  The Pledge of Allegiance truly fosters a sense of patriotism in the classroom.
Additional Resources

  • Check out this site for lesson plans, songs, poems, and more books about the United States flag and the pledge of allegiance.  Day to day activities are also available!
  • Create a book mark that features the pledge of allegiance and important American symbols!  Templates for this craft as well as other activities are included!
  • Use this site for background information on the history of the United States flag, symbols, and the pledge of allegiance.  Along with the detailed content information, there are also activity outlines, including a lesson where students create their own pledge of allegiance and flag that represents their identity!

Book: The Pledge of Allegiance
Author: 
Scholastic
Publisher:
Scholastic Inc. 
Publication Date: 
200o
Pages: 
32 pages
Grades: 
K-3
ISBN:
 0439241847