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Americana Trivia (in Kid lingo) for Your 4th of July Bash

The 4th is made fun with hot dogs, pools, and a long weekend, and this Primerrily piece is sure to make a good time even better. This trivia will have both adults and kids laughing, learning, and enjoying the holiday in a fuller way than ever before (and your kids will love surprising their grown up family members with some of our trick questions!).

Does France have a 4th of July?

Trick question! Of course France has a 4th of July! Every country has a 3rd and 5th of July too ;)

Ask your kids: Try asking a friend this question and see what they say!

What other country celebrated an independence on the 4th of July?

The Philippines used to celebrate independence (coincidentally, independence from America!) on July 4. The Philippines gained their independence from Spanish rule on June 12, 1898, which is the date on which they currently celebrate their independence, but on July 4, 1846 the United States formally recognized the independence of the Republic of the Philippines. From that date until 1962, Filipinos celebrated their country’s birthday on July 4.

Ask your kids: if you could pick another birthdate, which month would you choose and why?

What came first -- the Declaration of Independence or the start of the American Revolution?

Trick question #2. The American Revolution, which formally began on April 19, 1775. America had been fighting the British for more than a year when the Declaration of Independence was written and made official.

For the kids: Think about it like you throwing a temper tantrum for a few minutes before you tell me why you’re actually upset. (Well, you’re a lot nicer than King George, and it’s not exactly a parallel, but this might help your kids understand the difference between the two events :) )

Why did John Adams think July 2nd should be known as America’s Independence Day?

On July 2 Richard Henry Lee, a Member of the Continental Congress from Virginia, made a motion declaring “That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.” Then the famous “Committee of Five” (John Adams, Roger Sherman, Robert Livingston, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson) proposed a draft form of the language that would make this independence official. It took two days for the language to be edited and ratified. The purpose of it wasn’t just to explain themselves to the King as it was to explain their actions to the public.

Ask your kids: Those were some of the 5 most important people in our country’s history. Who are the 5 most important people in your life who are helping you grow in your independence?

Which two presidents died on July 4th?

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams. They died on the same day in 1826. Amazingly, 50 years earlier to the day, they were together persuading Congress to ratify America’s Declaration of Independence. At the age of 90, Adams lay on his deathbed while the country celebrated Independence Day. His last words were, "Thomas Jefferson still survives." He was wrong: Jefferson had died five hours earlier at Monticello at the age of 83. Adams and Jefferson started as fellow patriots and friends, but then became enemies and disagreed frequently with one another on the type of government they thought America should have. In fact, for many years they even stopped talking to each other! Finally, they realized they respected each other, and resumed their friendship by writing kind letters to one another.

Ask your kids: Who is a friend you respect? This may not be your best friend or the person you spend the most time with, but someone with whom you can disagree and still find ways to play together.

When was the Declaration of Independence signed?

Yet another trick question! Most people think it’s the 4th, but that’s just its ratification day. It was on August 2, 1776, that the rubber met the road for 56 members of the Second Continental Congress. It was on that day that they began signing the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia. It was a bold and brave move for these men, for in signing their names to this document they could have been found guilty of treason, their fortunes possessed, their families left bereft, and their lives lost should Great Britain have won the war.

Ask your kids: It’s one thing to tell your mom and dad you’ll do something, but it’s another thing to write them a note (or draw them a picture) that says you’ll promise to do it. What is one thing you can do today that shows you really mean what you say?

For your kids: Print the Declaration of Independence and try reading it aloud, even if it’s just the first paragraph. Then talk about what it means and ask your kids if they agree. If so, ask them to sign their names on the paper. Keep it and frame it for next year’s 4th of July decor! See one family's keepsake at the top of this article.

Check out other Primerrily Independence Day pieces at the links below.


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