With ANZAC Day just around the corner (25th April), I thought I’d share a few activities for you to try with the kids at home.
ANZAC Day is one of the most significant events in Australian and New Zealand calendars. It marks the first major military action taken by ANZAC forces in World War One. You can read more about it here.
But how to make the importance of the events that took place relevant to young children? It can be tricky to convey the significance when the wars happened such a long time ago. My best advice is via books, crafts and art.
Doilie Poppy Art
Poppies are the symbol of peace used for both Remembrance Day and ANZAC Day. The poppies grew on many parts of the Western Front as the battle-scared landscape recovered.
This is our chosen poppy craft for ANZAC Day. After reading about the significance of the poppy, we set about using liquid water colours and droppers to create our poppies. Follow the photographs for instructions on how to make them yourselves:
This is a beautiful book by Paul Cummings and Owen Swan. It tells the story of a little girl called Rachel. She makes ANZAC biscuits for her father who is fighting in the trenches. This actually used to happen: ANZAC biscuits would be sent in tins to the soldiers because they could last the journey – amazing! I love that by reading, you can get a history lesson without realising!
We haven’t gotten around to making any this year yet, but why not try making ANZAC biscuits with your children after reading the book? To try a recipe, click here.
Usborne See Inside The First World War
You can always count on Usborne to make any subject appeal to children. This is a really informative read for slightly older kids – I’d say from 7 onwards.
Although the book doesn’t focus on ANZAC Day itself, it makes for a brilliant overview if your child begins to show more of an interest in what happened during the First World War.
I first did these with a year 3 class to mark the 100th anniversary of Remembrance Day. They are simple enough to try with a range of ages – all you need is some paint and fingers!
As you can see from the picture, we created a display with our poppies by cutting them out and sticking them onto a green background.
Food Pouch Poppies
Simple enough for the little ones to do. We used our huge collection of food pouch lids to create some loose part poppies.
Food pouch lids are brilllaintly versatile for a whole range of activities. They also help with building strength in the hands and fingers for developing fine motor skills.
I can’t take credit for this one. Harrison made this clay poppy in school a few years ago. They formed part of an incredible outdoor display at his old primary school.
If you have some air dry clay and acrylic paint, this would be a wonderful activity to try with older children.
I hope that you will be able to try some of these activities over the ANZAC weekend. Please comment below and let me know how you get on!