History

Dangerous Jane by Suzanne Slade

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Back of Book:
Jane’s heart ached for the world, but what could she do to stop a war?
This energetic and inspiring picture book biography of activist Jane Addams focuses on the peace work that won her the Nobel Peace Prize. From the time she was a child, Jane’s heart ached for others. At first the focus of her efforts was on poverty, and lead to the creation of Hull House, the settlement house she built in Chicago. For twenty-five years, she’d helped people from different countries live in peace at Hull House. But when war broke out, Jane decided to take on the world and become a dangerous woman for the sake of peace.
My Review:
I have learned that when I pick up a book written by Suzanne Slade, I am going to learn something new about an incredible individual. Dangerous Jane is no exception. I had studied a little bit about Jane Addams, but reading this book gave me an entirely new insight on her. I never knew that Jane was a leader for peace in the Neverlands. I also never knew that the FBI considered Jane dangerous. The more I read, the more I wanted to learn. Suzanne writes in a powerful voice and tells the story of one of the greatest woman advocates in history. Alice brings the images to life in an equally strong and positive way. I can’t recommend this book to readers enough. It fulfills to many areas of learning. Every student should leave a classroom with the knowledge of who Jane Addams was to our nation, and the world!
Ages 6 and up
40 Pages

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History, Uncategorized

Patrick and the President By Ryan Tubridy

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Back of Book:
When the beloved president visited Ireland in 1963, he described it as the best four days of his life. And for a generation of Irish people, it was a trip they never forgot. This warmly told, bighearted picture book captures the fevered excitement in the buildup to the president’s visit, all seen through the eyes of a young boy named Patrick who wants to know more than anything what it would feel like to shake the president’s hand.

My Review: I was very excited when I heard that this book was coming out. I had never heard that President Kennedy visited Ireland. This book is a great historical look at how President Kennedy visited the country where his heritage was from. The story follows Patrick, a young boy who is very excited about an upcoming visit with the President. Patrick learns that he will get to preform several songs when the President. He would do just about anything to meet Kennedy. This story was well researched and allows readers to feel like they are there visiting the President. The illustrations are stunning and capture a beautiful moment in history.
40 Pages
Ages 6 and up

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History

Animals Christopher Columbus Saw: An Adventure in the New World By Sandra Markle

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Back of Book: While nothing about Christopher Columbus’ journey was expected, he couldn’t have imagined feasting on roasted lizard! Through nimble writing and beautiful paintings, this series casts the past in a whole new light!
My Review: My students really enjoyed reading this book. I borrowed it from the third grade teacher for my explorer unit. I was very glad I did. Each page shows the type of animals that Columbus encountered on his journey. Animals like camels, and lizards as well as parrots are mentioned. The story also describes the sea life, such as fish, and turtles that the crew would see on their journey. I love that this book tells readers that Columbus was an explorer who helped people to understand that the world was a much bigger place then they had imagined. The author did an excellent job of bringing the details of this story to life. The illustrations are breathtaking and give readers many small details to look at throughout the story.
Ages 6 and up
32 Pages

 

Civil Rights, History, Uncategorized

Climbing Lincoln’s Steps: The African American Journey By Suzanne Slade

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Back of Book: This empowering and emotionally driven story showcases significant moments in African American history that tie back to the Lincoln Memorial by introducing iconic civil rights activists as well as exploring President Abraham Lincoln’s role in abolishing slavery. This book highlights the hardships and triumphs faced while fighting for racial equality in America.
My Review:
I remember walking up the steps to the Lincoln Memorial. There was something unexplainable about the feeling that overcomes you as you take each stair. The history that has been made in that place is astounding. I loved each topic that was discussed in this story. Each page gives readers detailed information about different people who helped the Civil Rights Movement. This book celebrates the changes that have happened over the years. This book inspires readers to make a difference while still remembering those who have already walked the path before us. I plan on adding this book to my Civil Rights reading lit.
Ages 6 and up
32 Pages

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History, Skills Children Learn, Uncategorized

The Coal Thief By Alane Adams

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Back of Book: Brrr! Georgie wakes up to a freezing morning in 1920s Pennsylvania and gets the bad news that there is no coal to heat the farmhouse―and he knows there is no money to buy more, either. Just after he finds this out, along comes his friend Harley, who drags him off on an adventure to find some mysterious “black gold.” Before Georgie can catch his breath, he’s in a pile of trouble―all the way up to his ears! Take a trip back in time and join Georgie in this heartwarming tale of mischief made and lessons learned in America’s storied past.

 

My Review: The Coal Thief is a beautiful story about a little boy who learns a very valuable lesson. Georgie thinks that he is going on an adventure instead, he is asked to steal coal from a train.  This action causes Georgie to end up in trouble, creating a perfect lesson to teach to children. Georgie’s father shows him that if he shares the coal with others, he can bless them. I love that this book combines history, with valuable skills about having integrity and helping others. The story also teaches readers about taking responsibility for their actions, and choosing good friends.  The illustrations are stunning and draw a reader into the story.  The ending is sweet, and allows readers to see an example of doing the right thing.

 

Ages 5 and up

 

32 Pages

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History

Sojourner Truth’s Step-Stomp Stride By Andrea Davis Pinkney

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Back of Book: Born into slavery, Belle had to endure the cruelty of several masters before she escaped to freedom. But she knew she wouldn’t really be free unless she was helping to end injustice. That’s when she changed her name to Sojourner and began traveling across the country, demanding equal rights for black people and for women. Many people weren’t ready for her message, but Sojourner was brave, and her truth was powerful. And slowly, but surely as Sojourner’s step-stomp stride, America began to change.
My Review: This is an excellent story about slavery and one woman who fought to teach other people the truth about it. I realized that I didn’t know very much about Sojourner Truth. This book taught me about the amazing strong woman that changed the way woman were seen during that time period. Sojourner spent a lifetime fighting the injustices of slavery, and close minded thinking. She became famous for her speeches and ideas. This is a great addition to any slavery, Civil War, or great woman unit. The illustrations are eye catching and beautifully done. I can see this being a perfect book report story. I highly recommend this book.
Ages 6 and up
32 Pages

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History

We the Kids: The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States By David Catrow

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Back of Book

 

A long time ago some smart guys wrote the Preamble to the Constitution. You have probably read it before, but do you know what it means? And did it ever make you laugh? Now it will! Perfect for inspiring discussion in classrooms and around kitchen tables, this fun-filled and cheerfully illustrated look at the Preamble provides an accessible introduction to America’s founding ideals for citizens of all ages.

 

My Review:

 

What makes this book unique is the fact that is teaches children the preamble of the Construction.  This isn’t a book that gives opinions, it just simply teaches children the words of preamble in a way they can understand. David Catrow explains why he wrote the story. His forward in the beginning of the book is an excellent explanation as to why children should learn the preamble.   We also added a list of vocabulary words. These aspects add up to a great story to use in the classroom.  The illustrations are silly, and make students laugh out loud! The best part about this book, is that children are learning, and they don’t even realize it. I can see this being a perfect book for 1st grade to read in their social studies unit.

 

Ages 6 and up

 

32 Pages

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History

Patience Wright: American Sculptor and Revolutionary Spy By Pegi Deitz Shea

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Back of Book:

The intriguing story of one of America’s first spies—a woman! Born in 1725 in the American colonies, Patience Wright discovered her talent for art at an early age. As an adult, she joined her sister in a wax-sculpting business and later moved on her own to England. There, Patience became a spy for the colonies, hiding messages in the sculpted busts she sent to her sister’s waxworks in America. Here is the story of a woman who lived an extraordinary life, full of art and intrigue.

My Review:

I was intrigued by the storyline of a female spy. I truly enjoyed learning about the intriguing life  of Patience Wright. This book teaches readers about how she bravely turned her art work into a way to help her country. I can see this being a great story to read when discussing woman’s important roles in the war.  The illustrations in this book are soft and show a beauty in Patience Wright. I would highly recommend this book for any school library or unit study on the Revolutionary War.

40 Pages

Ages 8 and up

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History

Dolley Madison Saves George Washington By Don Brown

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Back of Book:

Dolley was a farm girl who became a fine first lady when she married James Madison. She wore beautiful dresses, decorated her home, and threw lavish parties. Everyone talked about Dolley, and everyone loved her, too. Then war arrived at her doorstep, and Dolley had to meet challenges greater than she’d ever known. So Dolley did one thing she thought might make a difference: she saved George Washington. Not the man himself, but a portrait of him, which would surely have been destroyed by English soldiers

My Review:

I have been looking for great picture books to read about strong woman for National Woman’s month. When I came across this story I thought it was perfect for my Kinders. Dolley Madison was an amazing First Lady who was known for her fantastic gatherings. This story shows how she created an environment at the White House where people were comfortable, and  able to converse about series topics. She is most famous for saving the portrait of George Washington during the War of 1812.  There is a great Authors note in the back of the book that discusses more about Dolley’s life.

Ages 5 and up

32 Pages

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History

Marching with Aunt Susan By Claire Rudoff Murphy

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Back of Book:

An inspiring story of the fight for women’s suffrage, based on the experiences of a real girl All Bessie wants is to go hiking with her father and brothers. But its 1896, and girls don’t get to hike. They cant vote either, which Bessie discovers when Susan B. Anthony comes to town to help lead the campaign for women’s suffrage. Stirred to action, Bessie joins the movement and discovers that small efforts can result in small changes and maybe even big ones. Inspired by the diary of the real Bessie Keith Pond, a ten-year-old girl who lived in California during the suffrage campaign

My Review:

In honor of National Woman’s Day I wanted to look at picture books that fought for the right for women to vote. When I picked up Marching With Aunt Susan I knew I had found an amazing story. I love that this book is based on a true story about Bessie and how she joins the woman’s fight to vote. It talks a great deal abut Susan B. Anthony and how she was the face of the woman’s fight.  The book has great historical information and a fantastic author’s note at the end. The illustrations are beautiful and I truly enjoyed them.

Ages 8 and up

36 Pages

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