10 Non-Fiction Books About Presidents: Facts, Guides, and Trivia, Oh My!
Learning about Presidents has evolved to become more fun than it used to be. We no longer have to rely on heavy textbooks with small fonts and stale illustrations for information on our nation’s leaders. Aside from the resources available online, there are beautiful books and guides available with vibrant illustrations and photographs to engage any young reader or historian. We can bid adieu the days when kids robotically memorized the Presidents by order and years in office and ecstatically usher in a more casual approach to learning about past and present Commander’s-in Chief. These books, guides, and cards offer interesting trivia and facts, engaging formats, and lively illustrations; a perfect combination to pique interest for hours of casual reading, followed by days of reciting trivia, and hopefully, years of knowledge about these important people in American history.
By Ken Jennings, Illustrated by Mike Lowery
Publisher’s Synopsis: Become a presidential pro with this interactive trivia book from Jeopardy! champ and New York Times bestselling author Ken Jennings.
With this book about U.S. Presidents, you’ll become an expert and wow your friends and teachers with clever facts: Did you know that Abraham Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday? Or that Jefferson introduced the first French fries at a fancy state dinner? With great illustrations, cool trivia, and fun quizzes to test your knowledge, this patriotic genius guide will have you on your way to whiz-kid status in no time!
Ages 8-10 | 160 pages | Little Simon | May 2014 | ISBN 9781442473324
By Smithsonian Institution and Amy Pastan
Publisher’s Synopsis: Which president holds the record for the most vetoes? Which president had the largest shoe size? Who was the only president to serve in both World War I and World War II? Who was the tallest president? These questions and many, many more are answered in The Smithsonian Book of Presidential Trivia.
Divided into 11 chapters, The Smithsonian Book of Presidential Trivia looks at every aspect of our heads of state and presidential history: Citizens, Officers, Heroes, and Saviors; Stumping: From Front Porch to Facebook; The Pledge and the Parties; Inside the Oval Office; The Perpetual Podium; Home, Hotel, Parlor, Playground; First Families; Impeachment, Controversy, Shame; Assassination; Death, and National Mourning; Presidents in the Popular Imagination; and The Quotable President.
Many of the questions are accompanied with photographs of artifacts from the Smithsonian’s collections. The Smithsonian Book of Presidential Trivia is sure to puzzle the trivia buff and presidential expert alike!
Ages 10 and Up | 240 pages | Smithsonian Institution Press | January 2013 | ISBN 9781588343253
Our Country’s Presidents: All You Need to Know About the Presidents, From George Washington to Barack Obama
By Ann Bausum
Publisher’s Synopsis: Forty-four men have taken up the responsibilities of the Presidency as the nation has grown from its colonial infancy into a modern superpower. They’ve faithfully executed the duties of the President–waged war, signed treaties, addressed Congress, and established government offices. But their impact goes far beyond the bounds of their job description. Each President has left his mark on the history of the United States and on the lives of the American people. Our Country’s Presidents is packed with information about America’s leaders. Find out why George Washington gave up his life as a Virginia planter to lead a nation, and why John Tyler was nicknamed “His Accidency.” Walk with the Presidents through wars, depressions, civil rights movements, and the race for space. Romp with the Garfield kids in a White House pillow fight and mourn with the nation over John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Eight all-new pages will contain exciting information and new images, and, of course, Election 2012, and a brand-new profile and photographic portrait of the new President (if applicable). In-depth text and historic images combine to make this volume the definitive family reference guide to the fascinating lives of the Presidents of the United States.
Ages 10 and Up | 224 pages | National Geographic Children’s Books | January 2013 |ISBN 978-1426310898
By David Stabler, Illustrated by Doogie Horner
Publisher’s Synopsis: The kids who grew up to be president were like a lot of other children. Some struggled with schoolwork and got into fights; others pranked their teachers and infuriated their parents. William Howard Taft was forced to take dance lessons. Gerald Ford struggled with dyslexia. Teddy Roosevelt had a bedroom “museum” full of dead animals. Kid Presidents features 20 captivating true stories from the childhoods of American presidents, complete with lively text and more than 200 cartoon illustrations. Laugh-out-loud funny and packed with cool facts, it’s the perfect read for all young future leaders of the free world.
Ages 9-12 | 224 pages | Quirk Books | October 2014 | ISBN 9781594747311
By Steven Aronson
Publisher’s Synopsis: Fandex Family Field Guides: Presidents presents a chronological field guide to all 44 of America’s chief executives. Which President made the Louisiana Purchase? Which President won a Nobel Peace Prize?
Which President also served as chief justice of the Supreme Court? Who was in office during the Teapot Dome scandal, and who endured the childhood nickname “Useless”?
From the historic Founding Fathers (three of whom died on the Fourth of July) to the 19th-century forgettables (Fillmore, Tyler, Pierce et al.) to our current leadership, Presidents lets you finally get it straight.
Ages 9 and Up | 50 pages | Workman Publishing Company | 2009 | ISBN 9780761112037
By Editors of Reader’s Digest
Publisher’s Synopsis: Here is a look at the fascinating profiles of each of the 43 [sic] presidents, including the names of their pets! Sidebars are filled with fun and unusual information about our leaders-such as who appears on stamps and money-and “At a Glance” boxes provide birth date, political party, and other vital information, including that:
- Thomas Jefferson, our third president, spoke six languages, invented many things (the swivel chair and the pedometer, to name two), and designed and built not only Monticello (his rural home) but also the University of Virginia.
- Theodore Roosevelt, was one of the nation’s great hunters, and the Smithsonian is filled with hundreds of specimens from his safari in Africa. He was also our first environmentalist president, setting aside nearly 200 million acres for national parks and wildlife refuges.
You’ll also find a section on “The First Ladies”-short takes on all the presidents’ wives. The book ends with a special feature that’s just in time for the 2012 election: how a president gets elected. From the first presidential election to recent recounts, this chapter clearly explains to a young audience how we choose the next leader of our country. Includes over 100 whimsical illustrations!
Ages 9-12 | 144 pages | Reader’s Digest | February 2012 | ISBN 978-1606523605
By Kenneth C. Davis, Illustrated by Pedro Martin
Publisher’s Synopsis: Forty-four presidents One White House And hundreds of grand facts about our country’s leaders
Which president was also a movie star? (see page 56) What happened five days after the Union won the Civil War? (see page 28) What food did Americans think was poisonous until Thomas Jefferson ate some? (see page 12)
Hail to the chief! Here’s your chance to learn all about the presidents’ important political achievements, their nicknames, hobbies—even what kind of foods they ate. Bestselling author Kenneth C. Davis packs fun facts and cool quotes into his signature question-and-answer format. Who knows? After you learn so much about the presidents, maybe you will want to run for office someday, too!
Ages 8 to 12 | 64 pages | HarperCollins | January 2009 | ISBN 978-0061718236
By Noah McCullough
Publisher’s Synopsis: “I want everyone to know about the history of the United States and about important political events and issues and how they work.” –Noah McCullough, age ten, 2032 presidential hopeful
Noah McCullough may just be this country’s youngest presidential historian ever–and in this delightful volume he gives us hours of entertainment with an illustrated tour of America’s forty-three presidents, from George Washington to George W. Bush. The political whiz kid famed for his appearances on “The Tonight Show” offers up brief bios and fun facts about our nation’s leaders, as well as trivia questions such as
- Which president could write Greek with one hand and Latin with the other at the same time?
- What do the first president born in Connecticut and the last president born in Massachusetts have in common?
- Which president was a Pulitzer Prize winner?
Confident about your prez-smarts? Take Noah’s Ultimate Presidential Trivia Quiz and see where you stand. Forget your p’s and q’s; know your stars and stripes. If you love your country, you will love The Essential Book of Presidential Trivia.
Ages 8 and Up | 288 pages | Random House Publishing Group | February 2006 | ISBN 9781400064823
By Editors of TIME For Kids
Publisher’s Synopsis: Did you know that James Monroe was the first President to appear without a wig in formal public settings? Or that George W. Bush named the first African Americans as secretaries of state? In this informative reference book by the editors of the award-winning TIME For Kids® magazine, you’ll learn about the Presidents’ childhoods, careers, accomplishments in office, and life after the White House. As a great plus for school reports, you’ll find hundreds of fascinating facts—and the history of our nation is woven into each presidential portrait.
Ages 8 to 12 | 72 pages | HarperCollins | December 2006 | ISBN 978-0060815561
By Brain Quest Editors
Publisher’s Synopsis: Brain Quest just keeps getting smarter! Brain Quest Presidents has been thoroughly updated with fresh and appealing designs for the cards and revised content—that’s hundreds of brand-new questions. Drawn from first-through sixth-grade curricula, the material aligns with state and national standards and is vetted by an award-winning teacher.
Which President doubled the size of the U.S. with the Louisiana Purchase? How does a President get takeout pizza? Brain Quest Presidents delivers 850 fascinating questions and answers about the highest office in the land, and the men who have held it.
Brain Quest proves it’s not just fun to be smart—it’s smart to be smart
Ages 9 and Up | 152 pages | Workman Publishing Company | April 2013 | ISBN 9780761172383
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