Share Flag Day activities by posting (#CanadianFlag) on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
This information can be used to complement the curriculum in a variety of subject areas including social studies, history, communications, civics and law. In this section, you will find everything you need to help you plan exciting events to involve students in celebrating National Flag of Canada Day each February 15.
Suggested activities for primary grades
Young children recognize the National Flag of Canada as an important symbol. Here are a few activities to get them involved and to share in the excitement:
- Make your own Canadian flag. Students can draw or paint it, or use modelling clay.
- Make it twice as long as it is high, divide it in three parts, make the middle part a square, leaving it white with a red maple leaf in the centre. Colour the other two parts red. Display the flags for the rest of the school to enjoy or have students take them home to share with their families.
- Have you noticed how many flags are flying in your neighbourhood? Ask your students to count them on their way to school or when they are out with their families. They can share how many flags they have seen in the week leading up to National Flag of Canada Day and where they were. Record the results and make it a fun game by pinning the locations on a map.
- Give each student a piece of paper that represents a section of the Canadian flag to colour. Tape each section together to make a large flag. Have a photo taken of the students with their flag and display it in your classroom.
Suggested activities for intermediate grades
Students at the intermediate level are more conscious of the use of symbols to reflect who they are and to foster a sense of being part a community. Use this approach to foster an increased pride in our flag, country and identity:
- Students can ask family members about an important moment in Canadian history that they have personally experienced. They could make a poster of this or another event with a Canadian flag present. Students can relate their pride in Canada and in being Canadian to the class.
- Students could write a one-page essay using the question “What does the flag mean to me?” as a starting point. This question will lead to others centering on feelings of national pride and the significance of being part of this Confederation. They may have someone in their family who fought for Canada in a war, who remembers the day in 1965 when the National Flag of Canada was first raised at Parliament Hill, or has emigrated from another country and become a Canadian citizen. Have students present their essays to the class.
- Students can learn about the important role of the monarchy in the history of our national flag: From King George V proclaiming red and white as national colours in 1921 to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II proclaiming our official National Flag in 1965.
Suggested activities for high school
Older students have a strong appreciation of their identity as Canadian citizens. Help them to collectively share their views.
- The flag that represents Canada at home and around the world celebrates its birthday every year on February 15. The maple leaf flag was chosen after one of the longest divisive parliamentary debates in Canadian history. Do some research on the flag debate: what were the issues, what were the options and why did people feel so strongly about them in 1964? Stage your own flag debate. Questions could range from "Our flag, our country ... in what ways does the flag represent Canada at home and around the world?" to "Why are symbols important in honouring our history?" Have students write short essays based on the questions they wish to address.
- Contact local media or radio stations to suggest an on-air flag trivia quiz. Ask your local newspaper or television station to cover events at your school in order to share your school's pride with the community. Students can even develop a media plan in advance to test their organizational skills and ensure success.
- Divide the students into groups and have them create events that focus on the National Flag of Canada Day theme. Include social media campaigns as a component of their assignment to promote their activities. See how many new connections they can make!
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