They thought he was lazy, this boy who would take a book out of his back pocket to read at the end of each row he'd plow. In fact, bigger things were in store for this young dreamer who was destined to become out 16th president. Readers are treated to a homey glimpse of this hero's boyhood, leaning on his father's lap by the fireside as yarns were spun, splitting wood, shivering with his sister in a drafty log loft. It chronicles both the dark days (like when Abe's mother dies of "milk sickness" when he is nine) and exciting adventures (such as the great wrestling match between him and Jack Armstrong, which was met with cries of "Body slam! Body slam!" by my second grade listeners). The story stops where most others begin, as Lincoln takes his seat at the White House. The unpretentious illustrations are evocative of the period and contain many details that are springboards to discussion, such as what schools were like in pioneer times, and why Lincoln campaigned from a train. And don't forget, in honor of Lincoln's favorite pastime, celebrate his birthday by starting a penny drive fundraiser for your school library! (6 and up)
Imagine if you read aloud just one picture book biography to a child every week. By the end of the year, how many new heroes would that child have? How many new mentors? How many figures from history and around the world would that child know? There's only one way to find out!
Picture book biographies are one of the strongest genres in contemporary children's literature. They can be read aloud across the grade levels, and they don't take long to share. Many focus on peacemakers, visionaries and artists. So make a biography break a regular part of your reading routine! Here are just a few to get you started...
Welcome to the Wonderful World of PlanetEsme! I'm a professional readiologist™ who thinks children's trade literature and read-aloud is our best hope for equalizing education in America. I hope this book-a-day plan will be a boon to anyone who would like to play a supporting character in a child's reading life story. This blog is a supporting page to sister site PlanetEsme.com, where you will find a silly amount of additional reviews, thematic lists, links, and much more...everything you need to become an expert in children's literature.