I remember learning about the presidents, and more generally, about the U.S. system of government, when I was a kid. And while my parents certainly had political beliefs, they really didn't try to impose them on me, so my main takeaway from my childhood was that the president is awesome and that our system of government is the best. I am grateful that I was introduced to government and politics in a simple and innocent way, and that I was allowed to develop a healthy respect for the office, and the system, before I grew up and learned just how ugly politics can be. And it is very important to me that my children learn to have a similar respect for the office, the system, and the process while they are young. There will be plenty of time for them to threaten to move to Canada and/or secede when their candidate loses! So while David and I had strong opinions about the last election, we really tried to explain that both candidates want what is best for the country, but just have different ideas about how to get there. We did share a little bit about why we vote the way we vote, which the kids may or may not have understood, but one thing they do understand is that they will be on the losing side of every classroom mock presidential election they ever participate in in Alabama if they vote like we do. ☺
Coinciding with the election, Jacob had to make a presidential poster for school. The kids did not get to choose their presidents but were randomly assigned. Jacob got:
I'm kind of a fangirl, so I was super excited! Of course with Bill you don't get too far into the bio when you start running into names like "Paula Jones" and "Monica Lewinsky," but Jacob seemed pretty focused on getting in, getting the information he needed for his poster, and getting out, so he didn't deviate from his outline -- date of birth, place of birth, education, offices held before president, identify of vice president, political party, main accomplishments while in office, fun facts. And thankfully, he chose as his fun fact "nicknamed Bubba as a kid," so I didn't need to field any questions about Gap dresses or pizza deliveries. Phew.
Elizabeth cannot have someone else in the house working on poster board without getting in on the action, so she wanted to do her own presidential poster. She chose James Madison. Of course as with all Elizabeth projects, copious amounts of scotch tape were used.
When David left for work in the morning, she begged him to come home with a picture of James Madison and a copy of the Constitution for her poster (our printer is broken) and you would have thought he came home with a new puppy to witness her reaction when he came home with these papers in hand. Elizabeth taped them to the poster to complete it. Both children then did a presentation of their presidents for us from the hearth. We are a happy nerd family.