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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History

Worst of Friends: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the True Story of an American Feud By Suzanne Tripp Jurmain

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Back of Book:

John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were good friends with very different personalities. But their differing views on how to run the newly created United States turned them into the worst of friends. They each became leaders of opposing political parties, and their rivalry followed them to the White House. Full of both history and humor, this is the story of two of America’s most well-known presidents and how they learned to put their political differences aside for the sake of friendship.

My Review: I consider myself to be an enthusiast when it comes to reading about early American history. When I saw this book at the library I knew I had to add it to my to be read pile. (which is growing rapidly) This picture book shows a beautiful glimpse into the lives of Presidents John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. It discusses the issues they had and the problems that came from it. Illustrator Larry Day did an excellent job of bringing these two men to life. I truly enjoyed reading the story.

Ages 8 and up

32 pages

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History, Presidents Day

Meet Thomas Jefferson Patricia A. Pingry

 

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BACK OF BOOK:

 

This picture book begins with Thomas Jefferson as a boy at school and home. Children will see Jefferson as a husband and father, as author of the Declaration of Independence, as president of the United States, and as retired farmer.

 

MY REVIEW: Presidents Day is this week which is a great time to read stories about the great Presidents that have run the United States. Most of my Kindergarten age stories are focused on President Washington or Lincoln. I usually try to find a few books about Presidents that are not as well discussed. I love Meet Thomas Jefferson because I gave a great background about Thomas Jefferson it starts from his birth and goes to the end of his life. It discusses his love of books and how he donated his collection to the Library of Congress.  It also discusses important parts of history such as the writing of the Declaration of Independence as well as the Louisiana Purchase.   II read a few pages a day to my class. It worked very well as a circle time story. The illustrations are very nice and create an enjoyable story.

 

Ages 7 and up

 

32 Pages

 

 

History

Brave Girl: Clara and the Shirtwaist Makers’ Strike of 1909 By Michelle Markel

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 Back of Book: When Clara arrived in America, she couldn’t speak English. She didn’t know that young women had to go to work, that they traded an education for long hours of labor, that she was expected to grow up fast. But that didn’t stop Clara. She went to night school, spent hours studying English, and helped support her family by sewing in a shirtwaist factory. Clara never quit, and she never accepted that girls should be treated poorly and paid little. Fed up with the mistreatment of her fellow laborers, Clara led the largest walkout of women workers the country had seen. From her short time in America, Clara learned that everyone deserved a fair chance. That you had to stand together and fight for what you wanted. And, most importantly, that you could do anything you put your mind to.

My Review:   I have recognized a trend of people looking for books with strong female roles. After I read this story I decided that it was a perfect example of what girls can accomplish. Clara is an immigrant girl who learns to fight for what she believes in. This picture book includes a bibliography and an author’s note on the garment industry. The descriptions in the story transported me to a tough place in America history. The book is well researched and can easily be used to teach a core part of our history.

Ages 8 and up

32 Pages

History

Cleopatra By Diane Stanley

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Back of book:  Queen of Egypt at the age of eighteen, Cleopatra’s passion was to untie the world under Egyptian rule. Legendary leaders risked their kingdoms to win her heart, and her epic life has inspired countless tales throughout history. A timeless story of love, war, and ambition, their pictorial biography is sure to entertain and educate.

My Review:  If you have never read a story by Diane Stanley please go pick one up. She is one of the best authors at writing biography stories. The story of Cleopatra is scandalous and a huge part of Egyptian history. Stanley does a perfect amount of research about her subject matter and has a list of sources in the back of the book. This is not a book I would read to younger grades because the content matter is more grown up. This is a perfect book for writing a biography or a book report.

Ages 9 and up

48 pages

History

A Picture Book of Davy Crockett By David A. Adler

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Back of book: Davy Crockett was born on August 17, 1786 in a backwoods cabin in eastern Tennessee. At age twelve, David learned how to shoot a rifle. When he grew up, he won most of the shooting matches he entered and became a well-known storyteller. No matter where he lived, he was popular. He was elected to three terms in the House of Representatives. After being defeated in the congressional election of 1835, he was ready for new adventure. He rode to Texas, where he fought and died in the Battle of the Alamo.

My Review:  One of my units that I teach in Kindergarten is on explorers and pioneers. It can be slightly complicated teaching about historical figures to five year olds. So after some research I found the Picture Book Biographies. There are several different stories that are written on a level that all audiences can enjoy. Davy Crockett is a great look at a strong man who grew up in the rough and wild pioneer days. I used this book as the major part of my unit and the students really enjoyed it.

Ages 6 and up

32 Pages.