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review 2018-04-21 04:05
The U.S. Constitution and Other Key American Writings - Founding Fathers



This is a hard book to write a review for because it’s just a collection of writings. 


The overall selection of writings was pretty good. Although I did find that the rules of baseball was an odd pick to include. I love baseball and all (it’s my favorite sport) but I don’t think it’s that important. Baseball isn’t that groundbreaking. I would have also loved to have seen more Supreme Court rulings since there was only one (Brown v. Board of Education). However, that’s just a personal preference because I love reading the Supreme Court Justices’ opinions. 


One of my favorite writings was the Susan B. Anthony one. There were few female writings in here so it was nice to see Susan B. Anthony included. 


My least favorite by far was the Social Security Act. That was a total snooze fest. It was over 40 pages and so dry. I also felt that it could have been replaced by a few, more interesting writings.


All in all, this is a really solid collection of fundamental American writings. I definitely recommend it if you are looking for a comprehensive collection of American documents and speeches. 

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text 2018-04-18 21:08
Reading progress update: I've read 355 out of 434 pages.
The U.S. Constitution and Other Key American Writings - Founding Fathers
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text 2018-04-02 06:06
Reading progress update: I've read 319 out of 434 pages.
The U.S. Constitution and Other Key American Writings - Founding Fathers
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review 2016-03-13 15:39
"Those rebels, John and Tom" by Barbara Kerley
Those Rebels, John and Tom - Barbara Kerley,Edwin Fotheringham

An informational children's book that compares and contrasts the founding fathers, John Adams and Tomas Jefferson. These two had very different lives, personalities, and childhoods but did have the same love for the american colonies. This could be used as an integrated history and reading lesson. Students can do a study on John Adams and Tomas Jefferson. They could make a venn diagram of the two and list similarities and differences. 


Interest Level

Grades 2 - 6

Reading Level

Grade level Equivalent: 6.3

Lexile® Measure:AD960L

DRA: 40

Guided Reading: R


  • Autobiography and Biography

 This link is to an excellent teaching blog. The picture is of a venn diagram that compares two students in the class. You could also do this and have the students compare two characters from a story! I also like how this incorporates art into language arts. -Maggie Smith 2/18/13:

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review 2016-02-23 19:36
An excerpt from Dr. E.B. Foote's Medical Common Sense

I finished The Trouble With Tom: The Strange Afterlife and Times of Thomas Paine and I want to write a long, quote filled review that will make you want to read it but I also want to get a post up! I might post a better review within the next week...
To keep it short for now, it's a book mostly about the generations directly following Paine's. Each of the people it profiles had their lives forever altered when they read Paine's work and most of them came in contact with his remains at some point, which were taken from his grave by an enemy turned admirer. It's both inspiring and disheartening to read about these men who were feminists, vegetarians, and who encouraged racial mixing at a time when racial marriages were illegal almost everywhere and even in more progressive places whites still didn't see blacks as their equals. Inspiring for obvious reasons and disheartening because this: 


"The very fact that men talk of allowing women this or that liberty is evidence that authority itself has been usurped. As well might a pickpocket talk of giving a port-monnaie to someone from whom he had clandestinely filched it. I tell you, reader, we men have no rights to give women; she possesses naturally the same rights as we do." 


...because THIS, written in 1870 in reference to women's work rights and rights to CHOOSE whether to have a child or use birth control is STILL controversial!!! (When I read that I almost yelled I was so excited. I want to go back and time and give this guy a hug... and then unfortunately disappoint him by telling him that we're still fighting for African American and women's rights.)

So all in all, this book got me riled up and excited and pissed off and hopeful and everything else a book should do. Highly recommended to anyone who likes reading about inspiring figures from the past and anyone who has any interest in Thomas Paine, Walt Whitman, Henry David Thoreau, or other American historical figures of a similar vein. 



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