Using educational tools and suggested projects, educators customize classroom activities to teach young people about sacrifices made to protect our country’s freedom. BY engaging in the classroom activities and programs, young Americans learn about patriotism, citizenship, and history. The Saluting America program was launched in 20134 in partnership with the American Legion and with major support from the Daniels Fund.
A Tribute Card completed by each student is a key program element. These messages of appreciation are distributed to veterans and active duty military worldwide. Successful school components include collaborative efforts with veterans’ organizations, the awarding of “The American’s Creed” framed prints, school organized Tribute Contests for creative works, and ceremonies recognizing the efforts of students and service of our military.
Students in grades K-12 develop appreciation for what veterans have done and what active duty military does to protect our values and freedoms. They acknowledge this service and express their gratitude through direct messages in the Tribute Cards and Tribute contests. Schools lead activities that may include special award ceremonies, school assemblies, community activities, with the emphasis on the inclusion of our veterans and military members.
Through these powerful interactions facilitated and encouraged by the Saluting America school program, America’s youth learn about sacrifice, service, and courage directly from the men and women who embody these values. As Tribute Cards reach veterans and active military personnel around the world, these bonds grow even stronger.
These powerful but simple activities within the Saluting America School Program engage students, schools, parents, veterans, active military members, community leaders, local businesses, and other community and volunteer organizations with each other. As students become more aware of the sacrifices made on their behalf and as they express their appreciation through Tribute Cards and Tribute Contests, local community bonds strengthen.
When the completed Tribute Cards are distributed locally, across the nation, and around the world, veterans and active military receive personal “thank you” messages from America’s youth.
The student and the Tribute Card recipient may be perfect strangers, but they become emotionally bound to each other through the message in the card.