The Presidential election has overtaken the airwaves, and most children are aware of the importance of the event. But how do we choose our next President? In a year with so much vitriol in the campaign, it’s understandable that parents might want to shield their children from the TV. But luckily, there are books like Catherine Stier’s If I Ran For President to explain the process to children.
In the book, a multi-ethnic group of girls and boys describe what would happen if they ran for President, from the primaries to the debates to ordering a Blue Plate Special at a diner in Delaware. In the process, children get a good sense of what goes into a presidential election–at least in a normal year. The book is determinedly non-partisan. The two major political parties and their symbols are mentioned, but the book does not discuss the differences between them.
This is a great, lighthearted overview of the political process. A few topics, like the Electoral College or primary caucuses, may need a bit more explanation, but overall this is an extremely thorough book. It’s perfect for teachers teaching the election as well as for parents who want to teach their children about the process but are wary of what they might hear on the news. You can follow it up with its companion, If I Were President. Highly recommended, particularly in an election year.
If I Ran For President by Catherine Stier; illustrated by Lynne Avril; Albert Whitman & Co.; c2007