A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Grace for President, by Kelly DiPucchio and illustrated by LeUyen Pham, is a fun, lively story of a mock presidential election in an elementary school. Even the electoral college is thoroughly yet simply explained for young readers. The two kid candidates run issues-oriented campaigns, and they never resort to mean tactics (though the boy, Thomas, gets a bit overconfident in his win and doesn't work as hard to reach voters). There's genuine suspense regarding the outcome, and readers will be swept up in the enthusiasm of appealing, democracy-loving Grace.
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What's the story?
In GRACE FOR PRESIDENT, elementary school student Grace is shocked to learn that there have been "no girls" elected president in in American history. Her teacher decides to stage a school election for president to help the kids understand how American democracy works -- including the electoral college (with certain kids representing certain states). Grace runs against Thomas, a boy in another class. They campaign hard, making posters, buttons, campaign promises; taking polls; and noting a gender gap. Grace gives speeches at recess and holds rallies after school, while Thomas gets a bit overconfident, assuming he'll win because more of the electors are boys. Finally, the election comes down to one state. How will Wyoming vote?
Is it any good?
Our complex democracy is explained in a clear, kid-friendly way in this lively story of an elementary school presidential election. Grace is a passionate and appealing character, and Thomas is a worthy (if somewhat complacent) opponent. They both model enthusiasm for the electoral process without ever being mean to each other. How the electoral college works is explained simply in the story, and an Author's Note goes further into its history and purpose.
Grace envisions herself having a career in politics, and on the endpapers, she's pictured among the presidents on Mount Rushmore. This charming book may inspire others to make a difference in their community and run for office.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how American democracy is portrayed in Grace for President. How does the electoral college work?
Why do you think there's never been a woman president?
How is running to be class president different from running to be president of the United States? How is it similar to a national campaign?
Themes & Topics
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For kids who love strong girls and American history
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