In our collective memory are two
distinct holidays that celebrated presidents of the United States: Abraham
Lincoln’s birthday on February 12 and George Washington’s on February 22.
More recently, they have been melded into one sole
holiday, called Presidents’ Day, always a Monday, usually between these two
While some people bemoan this change, you can take
an opportunity to help your children understand the contributions made by the
men who have led our country for more than 200 years. Perhaps discussions with
your children about these topics can lead them to a better understanding of
what some people these days call "those dead white guys."
- Who was your favorite president, and why?
- Have you ever visited one of the presidents’ library and
- In which presidential election did you vote for the first
- Were you ever active in a presidential campaign?
- Who was president when you were born?
- Can you name the succession of presidents during your
- Who was president when your children were born?
- If you came to the United States from another country,
perhaps you can explain to your children the differences between the office
of the president of the United States and the leader of the country from
which you came.
There are presidents depicted on our coins and
bills. Do your children know who they are? Do they understand their
accomplishments and the reasons why they are so honored?
If you are fortunate enough to be able to travel
with your children, you may be able to visit the White House as well as
memorials to various presidents in Washington, DC and around the country. But
you can also find out about these people without even leaving your home, by
reading about them in library books.
You can research this with your child on the
Internet. A very comprehensive website is
www.netcolony.com/news/presidents/, where you will be able to find
biographies, birth and death information, coins and stamps with presidents,
presidential libraries and museums, nicknames, pets, quotations, and lots