Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Madam President by Lane Smith

I recently discovered that we will elect a new president in November. OK, not recently, about 2 years ago really, and frankly, even though I'm sort of an election news junkie, I have about reached the point of exhaustion with this one. In any case, when school starts in the fall, I know elections will be a significant part of the teaching going on. Knowing this, I have been on the look out for some good new books dealing with politics and elections. My partner Karen blogged See How They Run which looks like a great resource for the classroom but due to its paperback format I passed on purchasing it for the library.

I reviewed a preview copy of Mike Lupica's new Comeback Kids book called Long Shot.

Recently I finally got my hands on Lane Smith's new picture book called Madam President.
The book describes the job of president through the eyes of a little girl. Lane Smith always blends humor with the information. For example, one of the president's duties is to give executive orders. The order given by the young girl is "More waffles please!" A president must attend state funerals, in this case the funeral of a pet frog.

The president must choose a capable cabinet, you know, Secretary of State, Treasury, Education, Naps, Pizza, Fantasy, etc. Smith has all of the positions illustrated with a map of Texas for the Sec. of State, a piggy bank, and other humorous depictions. All of it's fun, and all of it will lead to some very teachable moments.

The book is a list of all presidential duties and they are all shown through the eyes of a child. While it humorous to adults, I really believe it will make the most important job in the world make sense to young kids.

As always award winner Lane Smith's illustrations are interesting and a joy to look at. He includes real pictures with his cartoon drawings and some of the illustrations have collage look to them. I plan on sharing this one in THE PIT in November.

My name is Bill and I approve this book review.

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