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So You Want to Be President by Judith St.…

So You Want to Be President (edition 2000)

by Judith St. George, David Small (Illustrator)

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1,6501214,363 (4.21)7
Title:So You Want to Be President
Authors:Judith St. George
Other authors:David Small (Illustrator)
Info:See notes (2000), Paperback, 52 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Caldecott Winner, part of CCSE, Informational non fiction text

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So You Want to be President? by Judith St. George



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Illustrated by David Small

This picture book for young children tells some of the interesting tidbits about the American Presidents, from George Washington to Bill Clinton. The message is that almost anyone can be president – fat, thin, tall, short, born in a log cabin or a mansion, college graduate or struggled to learn to read, army general or tailor. There is an updated edition, that includes George W Bush, but even that one states all that all the presidents have been white men, and that no woman has even run for the office. (Although there is acknowledgement of Geraldine Ferraro’s historic run for Vice President.)

David Small’s illustrations earned the Caldecott medal. His near caricatures are fun and engaging, and he includes small details to delight both children and the adults who may be reading aloud. I loved Teddy Roosevelt playing with a train set on the floor, or Richard Nixon bowling, or the Presidential “band” with Bill Clinton on the sax, Chester Arthur on the banjo, and Thomas Jefferson on the violin.

I think I would probably rate this only three stars if it weren’t for the illustrations. Small’s drawings earned that extra star from me. ( )
  BookConcierge | Jul 14, 2017 |
This is a story about all of the presidents throughout time, as well as the all of the different unique qualities throughout time. The book goes through the different things that may come along with being President such as going to college. This is a good book because it uses the tool of allusion when describing the different Presidents and what they do. ( )
  canderson15 | Apr 28, 2017 |
So You Want to be President, is a great informational book about the life of the President of the United States. The book talks about all the different presidents that we have had, except for Obama and our current president. The book talks about the differences and similarities of all our presidents, providing interesting facts about many of our presidents. Some of the facts that it includes, are the jobs presidents had prior to being in office, their family history, their size, and so on and so forth.
Personal Reaction:

I have always been a history buff, since I was around the age of 8. On my tenth birthday I had already had a favorite president (FDR), and I asked for books about his life, as well as the history of our country at that time. If this book had been made when I was younger, I would have read it till it was falling apart. I loved the way this book was written, it made the little facts about the presidents exciting for young learners. The illustrations popped and were very colorful; much like our history. There wasn’t a part of this book that I didn’t enjoy, and I can only hope that my children share my love for history, because this will defiantly be on our reading list.

Extension Ideas:

There are so many activities that you can do to go along with this book. This book is full of presidential facts, and is presented in such a fun way. To go along with the energy of the book, and activity that I would do is using the list of Presidents on the back of the book. After reading the book, I will use the President list at the back of the book, and teach the students The Presidents Rap (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKaVWpvltPo). Once we have learned the order of all the presidents, I would do a presentation for the school/parents on Presidents Day. Another great activity to go along with this book, is a creative writing activity. In the book, the students learn some great things that presidents have done, and some not so great things. I would ask the students to imagine themselves as President, and ask them to write a paragraph on something great that they would do while in office. The paragraph would be graded on content/concept and not so much the grammar aspect. ( )
  KaylaRoseDyer | Apr 23, 2017 |
Presidents an assortment of facts about the qualifications and characteristics of U.S. presidents, from George Washington to Bill Clinton.
This is an informational book which introduces the qualifications and characteristics of U.S. presidents by analyzing all of the previous presidents.Because of the topic, it creates a connection from the reader to the story, pulls them in and engages, especially the students who are interested in this topic.
The art is done in ink, water color and pastel chalk.
Comments on use:
Enriching students' knowledge about U.S. presidents and some historical stories.
Being used in history class to draw students' attention and interests.
Age appropriateness:
middle school
  ShanGao | Apr 11, 2017 |
I would use this book as a read aloud with grades k-3 to introduce them to US history and give them more of an idea about the society they live in and how the presidency works. It is a very engaging book, although long, but it presents the information to these grade levels in a way that will make them want to learn. I would use this book as an independent read with 4-5th that supplemented a lesson on US history that would follow how the presidency/government was established because it paints pictures for them about the presidency and what it is like, while also giving them cool facts.
  rstrohmeier | Mar 12, 2017 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Judith St. Georgeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Small, DavidIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Small, DavidIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Channing, StockardNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0399243178, Hardcover)

Tired of books about the presidency that present themselves as history books? Author Judith St. George--along with Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator David Small--has created a book about the presidency that's serious fun. The basic theme is that anyone can be president: a fat man (William Howard Taft) or a tiny man (James Madison), a relative youngster (Teddy Roosevelt at 42) or oldster (Ronald Reagan at 69). Presidential hobbies, sports, virtues, and vices all get a tongue-in-cheek airing, perfectly matched by Small's political-cartoon style of caricature painting. It's fun, but the underlying purpose is clearly serious: to remind kids that the American presidents have been a motley group of individuals, not a row of marble busts. Ironically, that message makes the presidency far more interesting (and appealing) than it seems in some of the more traditional books. There's a factual addendum at the back giving all the dates and names, with a one-line bio for each past-president. (Ages 8 and older) --Richard Farr

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:57:43 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

This new version of the Caldecott-winning classic updated with current facts and new illustrations to include our forty-second president, George W. Bush. Shows us the foibles, quirks and humanity of the 42 men who have risen to one of the most powerful positions in the world.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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