Next year we will be doing a US presidents study before we begin our logic stage modern history studies. I figure it’s a perfect time given the fact that we will soon be watching a slew of political ads and debates leading up to the 2016 presidential elections.
My original plan was to do something similar to what we did for our US State Study during the grammar stage years. But after some thought, I have decided that it would be better to add a unit study of the presidents in between our early modern and modern history studies.
So, since I shared our state study plans with you, I thought I would do the same for our presidents study.
US Presidents Study Resources
Before I tell you my plan, I wanted to share the resources I will be using for the study.
Books we will be using:
- Our Country’s Presidents by National Geographic
- Presidential Elections and other Cool Facts by Syl Sobel
We plan on getting most of this information needed for these pages from the books I mentioned above. However, we will probably pull in more information from the following websites:
- Presidential Timeline Information from Scholastic – Includes their birthplace, time in office, political party and more.
- Presidential Videos from the History Channel
- Presidents of the US from Enchanted Learning
- Gallery of Presidential Portraits on Wikipedia
- Presidential Coloring Pages from the White House
- School House Rocks Electoral College Video
On top of all that, here’s a great post on how to memorize the US presidents.
And finally, here’s the notebooking page we will be using for our president’s study:
The US ~ Democracy or Republic?
I found out something interesting in my research. I don’t know about you, but I always have referred to the US as a democracy. It is what I was taught, but it turns out that by true definition the United States is actually a democratic republic. The difference is subtle, but very important to our founding fathers.
In a republic, the final authority rests with the individual person.
In a democracy, the final authority rests with the group majority.
If you want to read more about the republics, democracies, and why our founding fathers did what they did, check out the following article on Republic vs. Democracy.
US Presidents Study Plan
I plan for this study to take us about 10 weeks. Here’s the schedule I plan to use:
- Week 1 – The Office of the President, How the President is elected, Democracy vs. Republic
- Week 2 – George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe
- Week 3 – John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler
- Week 4 – James K. Polk, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan
- Week 5 – Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield
- Week 6 – Chester A. Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Benjamin Harrison, William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt
- Week 7 – William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover
- Week 8 – Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson
- Week 9 – Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush
- Week 10 – Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barrack Obama, Review & Test
For each president we will follow the same routine.
- Read about the president in Our Country’s Presidents.
- Discuss the president.
- Watch a video about the president or play a game.
- Fill out the notebook page for the president.
I plan for the study to take about 30 to 45 minutes a day, which is the time we currently allot for history. In addition, she will be working on memorizing the order of the presidents, which I will test her on at the end.
That’s our plan for studying the US Presidents. I trust that it will help you as you plan a similar study for your student!