Thursday, May 26, 2011

I like Ike!!!---Drawing Presidents???

How much do you know about our US Presidents?  I have to openly admit, very little of the lesser known ones.  Yes, I know that anyone who has been President of the United States is not a lesser known individual.  But how much do you know about Dwight D. Eisenhower versus Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, or even Barack Obama?  Well we got a challenge this week when we received a copy of A Kid's Guide to Drawing the Presidents of the United States...How to Draw the Life and Times of Dwight D. Eisenhower

I had told the kids that the book was coming and we were excited since Joey loves to draw and Lydia also has developed a doodle bug mentality.  I wasn't sure how Brayden would handle it though, since he is not a kid who enjoys art.  I have to say that when I opened the package, I was really impressed.  I flipped through and read the book before introducing it to the kids.  I love the way that the facts are put in a very simple to understand format.  It is great for use with kids from kindergarten up to middle school.  Depending on your child's skill level and interests, these would make a great Presidental Encyclopedia set to own (the art lessons being an added benefit). 

Our particular edition on Dwight D. Eisenhower included information on his family life, military career, election to President and his career as the 34th President of the United States.  The reason I feel that it would go right into Middle school level is the information included on McCarthyism, Arms Race, and Civil Rights.  There is a Timeline and Glossary for new terminology. 

We have a wide range of ages that we homeschool, so this book helped to introduce Lydia (Kindergarten) to the timeline of someone else's life and showed a span of years (longer than the timeline of her short life).  I was able to read to her what I knew she was able to comprehend and leave out some of the information that would be over her head.  We found some art and I helped her to follow the directions and draw her picture.

Joey and Brayden seemed to enjoy the steps also.  We read through the book together and then he chose a picture that he thought he could attempt (without feeling frustrated).  I thought I would try to see if he could complete this page on his own, so I explained the steps page and then went to help his sisters do their work.  I checked over his shoulder occassionally and he enjoyed it immensely.  Brayden chose a different picture with fewer details since he is not a kid that enjoys drawing.  He did really well considering his writing/drawing level is lower 1st grade level (and he's entering 4th grade).

The pictures have a wide age/skill level range.  Lydia in Kindergarten, just getting ready to start 1st grade level work, did struggle a bit.  Younger kids will need a lot of hands-on instruction with these books, but they are totally workable for the age range.  The books can be broken down over a couple days or for a full project last several days.   A student can decide to draw every drawing or just choose a few.  This series appears to be extremely adaptable, and in our family situation of having multiple kids with learning disabilities and autism, I was able to easily adapt and teach with this book quickly.

Here's a picture of our finished product:

  • Easily adjustable to multi-level teaching. 
  • Packed with information about each President
  • Directions are easy to follow in each drawing.  The previous instructions are shown in the next step, but highlighted in red.  Makes for independent work.
  • Great for Hands-on learning.
  • Our kids really liked learning about a President by drawing.
  • A child can do every drawing or just select one depending on their level.
  • Only available in hardcover...think if they were available in paperback cost could be cheaper
  • Price....individual quantities are limited and full set is pricey.

Publisher information:
Author: Philip Abraham
Publisher's Information:
Pages: Each book has 32 pages
Binding: Library bound (Hard cover)
Copyright: 2006

If you are interested in ordering this set, please visit the link below. 

A Kid's Guide to Drawing the Presidents of the USA

Timberdoodle has a wonderful set of supplies to fit all homeschoolers needs. 

History Curriculum,

Art Curriculum, Art Supplements, Art for homeschoolers

Free Homeschool Catalog

Complete Curriculum Kits

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As a member of Timberdoodle's Blogger Review Team I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a frank and unbiased review.


  1. We did Grover Cleveland! I enjoy seeing how it worked for you!


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