My husband and I have been watching the national conventions and discussing the historic impact of this year's election with our children. I've always taken my kids with me into the election booth, and am especially excited to do so this year. We want them to understand the electoral process and the importance of participating in our democracy. We want them to know who the candidates are and what they stand for. At the same time, we don't want to brainwash our children. I'm trying to be impartial in my presentation. I've recently found a few books to help me in this task. I think I need the help since my five year old saw John McCain's picture on a magazine and asked, "Is that the Black American or the one with the first lady vice president?" I had to laugh. He's been listening to me stress the historical significance of the election, but doesn't quite "get" it. That's cool; he's not biased either, I guess.
Luckily Simon and Schuster have recently come out with three well written picture books that give inspiring introductions to Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama, and John McCain. They seem to have been hedging their bets with the first one. Even though Obama and McCain earned their respective party nomination, all three books are worthy reads for children. Each book tells the story of a unique and inspiring American who faced great (and diverse) challenges and committed to serving his or her country. Each book is nicely illustrated and presents its particular politician's life story without going into platforms or ideology. I highly recommend all three books (in no particular order- although maybe if I did order them, I'd finally get some comments on the blog from my relatives).
Hillary Rodham Clinton: Dreams Taking Flight by Kathleen Krull
Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope by Nikki Grimes
My Dad, John McCain by Meghan McCain