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Veterans Day Books for Elementary Students

This list of Veteran’s Day books are great for celebrating both Veterans Day and Memorial Day! They teach elementary students the importance of these holidays and help them develop a beginning understanding of the sacrifices that men and women in uniform have made to keep our country safe. These patriotic books are great teaching tools for doing that!

Your students will enjoy listening to these read alouds and participating in thoughtful conversations about how we can show appreciation and respect to those that serve our country. Learn more about some of my favorite Veterans Day books below!

elementary students listening to veterans day books

7 Veterans Day Books for Kids

Read below to learn about some of my favorite Veterans Day books to share with elementary students! Your students will love these children’s books about Veterans Day!

America’s White Table by Margot Raven

In this book, a young girl named Katie learns about the importance of honoring and remembering veterans on Veterans Day. Katie’s mother teaches her and her sisters about the white table many Americans set for this day and what each item on the table symbolizes. They set a small table with an empty chair. There is a lemon slice and salt on the plate plus a turned over glass and a rose on the table. 

Katie learns that her Uncle John is a veteran who was held prisoner when he served in the war. He will be joining them for dinner that night and the girls realize just how much this symbol means to him. Each girl makes a special gift to place on the table. Katie makes a book where she expresses her hopes that all Americans set a table like this to remember veterans. When Uncle John sees the table the girls have set, it brings tears of pride to his eyes.

The Wall by Eve Bunting

A young boy and his father have taken a long trip to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. They are looking for the name of the boy’s grandfather. While they walk along the wall, the young boy notices all of the things that have been left at the wall to honor the names: Flags, stuffed bears, letters and roses. He also notices all the different people visiting the wall, including a veteran in a wheelchair. 

When the boy and his father finally find the name of his grandfather, they both take turns rubbing the name on the wall. The boy’s father even uses paper and a pencil to rub the name onto the paper. They leave the boy’s school picture in front of the wall. The boy learns that while it might be sad at the wall, it is a place of honor. He and his father are proud that his grandfather’s name is on such an important wall. 

The Poppy Lady: Moina Belle Michael and Her Tribute to Veterans by Barbara Walsh 📚

This book describes the life of Moina Belle Michael, also known as the ‘Poppy Lady’. As a young girl, Moina’s family had lost everything in The Surrender and were unable to hire a teacher for the local children. Moina was able to attend a boarding school, and later returned to her community to open a small school for her siblings and other local children.

When Moina heard that America was entering World War I, she wanted to help the soldiers as much as she could. With other local women, she knitted socks and bandages for a nearby military camp. A few years later, she completed training to become a canteen worker, although, after applying to travel overseas, she was denied due to her age.

However, she still wanted to contribute to the war effort. Moina opened a reading room in the basement of Columbia University. This is where many people would gather to read, sing, and talk with others. Soon after, Moina wanted to do more to help the soldiers who were serving. After reading a poem in a magazine, she felt inspired to buy poppies to honor the soldiers who gave their lives on the battlefields of Flanders.

After the end of the war, Moina got many different organizations and individuals to donate money to a fund for veterans, who had a hard time finding work and medical care after returning from the war. 

This heartwarming book will allow students to learn about an incredible woman who, throughout her life, sought to support the war effort by doing whatever she could. The beautiful illustrations help bring the Moina’s story to life!

Rags: Hero Dog of WWI: A True Story by Margot Theis Raven 📚

This book tells the story of Rags, a dog found on the streets of Paris by Private James Donovan. Rags joined Donovan on the battlefield and quickly became popular among other soldiers. He worked in the trenches. He would chase mice, deliver important messages, and act as a morale booster for the soldiers.

In October of 1918, Rags got a message to the Allies that helped them win the battle. Sadly, he was badly injured, but a kind doctor helped tend to his injuries.

Students will enjoy learning about the story of a dog who made a difference during World War I.

Veterans: Heroes in Our Neighborhood by Valerie Pfundstein

This book discusses why we should appreciate our veterans. It teaches readers that a hero is not necessarily a stranger who lives far away. After a boy reads about veterans in class, he asks his dad about veterans in their town. He is surprised to find that they live all around him in his community! The butcher, barber, firefighter, and mailman are just a few of the veterans in their town. The boy learns that, although veterans are not often easily recognized because they do not wear medals or badges, they make up many of the people who he interacts with every day.

This is a great read because it teaches students that there are heroes all around us. We often don’t even realize it!

H is for Honor by Devin Scillian

The book H is for Honor details the different aspects of military life by using the alphabet to introduce different words related to living in a military family. The book explains how life in the military affects the way that those who are serving act while at home and the effect this has on family dynamic. This humanizes those who work in the military as individuals who have families and lives away from their work. The illustrations add to students’ knowledge about the different aspects of the military and the military experience. 

This book is great for students around the time of Veteran’s Day. It shows the experience of those serving in the military during time at work and also while at home with their families. 

Hero Mom by Melinda Hardin

The book Hero Mom provides many different childrens’ perspectives on their moms who are in the military. It explains that, although their moms do not have powers or a cape, they are heroes because of what they are doing to help serve their country.  From rescue pilots to doctors, this book shows many different moms with many different military careers.

Both you and your students will love this collection of Veterans Day books! Each of these patriotic books helps students understand the importance of appreciating and respecting our service men and women. If you are looking for activities to go with these Veterans Day read aloud books, check out the resources below:

lists of elementary read alouds

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