School Assemblies promote patriotism
Updated: Feb 19
We are quickly approaching the 4th of July weekend which for me, is the official start to the summer. The first thing I would like to do is to thank all of the elementary schools that were kind enough to host my school assemblies in Pennsylvania, in New Jersey, in Connecticut, in New Hampshire, in Maine, in Massachusetts, in Maryland and last but not least, in New York! It has been such a hectic school year that I'm looking forward to unwinding like so many of the teachers and students for whom I performed. Since my Spirit of America school Assembly focuses on patriotism in our country, the 4th of July is a great time to blog about patriotism. During my show I try to teach about where patriotic music came from and who the important players are in the patriotic music songbook of the United States. Besides doing that, during my show I address the important principle of what patriotism is as well as the meaning of freedom. I try to impart to the kids how important freedom is to our country and our democracy, but unfortunately, freedom, is a fairly abstract word. In fact most of the kids at the grade levels K through 6th grade don't grasp the concept of what freedom really is. During my patriotic school assembly, I try to illustrate the concept of freedom in terms that that they can understand. I tell them that there are children around the world that are their age that would LOVE to go to school but are not allowed. In fact, I tell them during my school assemblies that there are kids around the world that are not allowed to even leave their homes. I tell them that the men and women fighting in the military on their behalf around the world are fighting so they have the “freedom” that some other kids do not.
Interestingly enough, the last school assembly I did on patriotic music, a 4th grader raised her hand during the assembly and said “these kids can go out -- they probably just don't want to.” Instead of using time during the performance, I said to her this would be a good discussion to have with her parents and maybe even her teachers. The teachers agreed with me. Freedom is such a complex and abstract idea that we must remember it's important that the kids really grasp how lucky they are to live in the United States of America. Having this discussion with your kids -- especially around the 4th of July which celebrates our country's independence, could not be a better time to have that conversation. Have a great summer! I'm looking forward to coming to your school for my next assembly!