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Shh! We're Writing the Constitution

Shh! We're Writing the Constitution

by Jean Fritz
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
Trade Paperback, 38 pages

An informative, interesting, and immensely readable account of the Constitutional Convention of 1787. Aimed at the same audience as Fritz' well-known series on Revolutionary heroes (Coward), this is every bit as good as those acclaimed titles, although younger children might need to have some terms clarified. Neatly woven into the discussion of what the framers were doing and how they did it are some wonderfully gossippy tidbits that are sure to catch young readers' imagination and make it all come alive for them. The text of the Constitution is included, as well as several pages of notes that expand upon some of the points that the main text touches upon. DePaola's choice of what to illustrate is excellent, as he has selected situations that have great child appeal. His illustrations, many of which are in color, add a further touch of good humor to the proceedings, particularly the sourpuss expressions on some of the founding fathers. This is superior to Marilyn Prolman's Story of the Constitution (Childrens, 1969), which is for the same age group. It is similar in style to Henry Steele Commager's The Great Constitution (Bobbs-Merrill, 1961), which is for an older audience. Fritz' ability to simplify without condescending makes this an excellent choice for introducing young readers to the complexities of the constitution. Elaine Fort Weischedel, Turner Free Lib .

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