Happy February! And welcome to our second Holiday History & Craft. (This article and craft is designed for younger children and is written accordingly).
Let’s read a little history and then play the “George Washington Card Game” and make “Lincoln’s Log Cabin (From Popsicle Sticks).”
This month we’re celebrating the Presidents of the United States. You can find lots of interesting books and pictures on the U.S. President page.
Did you know there’s an official Presidents’ Day? Why do we celebrate it? When did the holiday begin?
George Washington was the first president of the United States. He took office over 200 years ago (in 1789) and served for 8 years. He was a wise leader.
Abraham Lincoln was the sixteenth president, and he led the nation during the American Civil War. Have you read his speech “The Gettysburg Address”?
In 1879 Congress (group of elected officials making our laws) voted to make a Federal Holiday to celebrate George Washington’s birthday, which is on February 22.
However, in the 20th Century, the holiday was later changed to the 3rd Monday of February and, now we call it “Presidents’ Day”; the 3rd Monday often comes between Washington’s birthday (February 22) and Lincoln’s Birthday (February 12), so most people celebrate those two presidents.
The holiday is supposed to honor all our American presidents.
Some states have different names for the holiday, including, “Washington’s Birthday” or “Washington and Lincoln Day”. In Virginia it’s official called “George Washington Day” and Alabama celebrates “George Washington and Thomas Jefferson’s Birthdays.”
If you want to learn more about Washington, Lincoln, or other American presidents, check out the booklist on the U.S. President page.
Game – George Washington Card Game (Washington)
George Washington was a talented and industrious man. He served in many roles and jobs other than president. Learn about George Washington’s life and roles with this card game.
First, print the following PDFs on card-stock.
*You will need to print 2 copies of each page…this is VERY important*
George Washington Cards 1
George Washington Cards 2
George Washington Cards 3
Cut out the cards on the dotted lines. You should have a total of 40 cards.
You can use the cards to play MEMORY GAME or “GO FISH” or any other favorite game with matching cards.
Craft – Popsicle Stick Log Cabin (Lincoln)
Abraham Lincoln grew up in the American frontier. He lived in a log-cabin, worked with his father on the farm, and read books in every spare moment.
Let’s make a popsicle stick log-cabin! (Suggestion: first, ask your mom or dad if it’s okay – this might get a little messy and you might need their help)
*Warning: Scissors are sharp. Hot glue guns are…hot. Be careful*
What You’ll Need:
Approximately 90 Popsicle Sticks (sometimes called Craft Sticks)
Hot Glue Gun (optional)
Pens, pencils, markers, or other drawing/writing devices
Count out 70 popsicle sticks. You’ll use these for this part of the project. Lay two (2) sticks parallel to each other. Now lay two sticks on top of those first two to form a square. Glue in place. See photo.
Continue stacking and gluing the sticks in place, alternating directions (think “Lincoln Logs”). Keep your walls straight and even. Use all 70 popsicle sticks.
Now, you have to make a choice. Flat roof or traditional roof. Either was used in the frontier log cabins.
For a Flat Roof, simply lay popsicle sticks across the opening and glue in place.
Want to try the Traditional Roof. Heat up the glue gun, get an adult’s help, and BE CAREFUL!
Glue two (2) popsicle sticks upright on the outside of the walls. See picture.
Next, glue a stick across to make a “cross beam.” See picture.
Glue one (1) extra popsicle stick flat and parallel; this will be help to get the correct angle for the roof. See picture.
Next, begin gluing the roof sticks in place, alternating sides and crossing at the top. See picture.
When roof is complete, remove any extra strands of glue. (No spider webs in your cabin!)
To finish the cabins, cut a door and three windows out of paper and add their details with a pen or pencil. Glue the door and windows in place on the walls.
Your Lincoln Cabin is complete!
I hope you enjoy the game and craft. Leave a comment if you like, and come back next month. (I’ll even give you a hint about our topic: Orange & Green).