Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Family Historical Literacy Field Trip!

Visit the Homes of Two Presidents!
Founding Father John Adams 
and his son 
John Quincy Adams in Quincy, Massachusetts!

Adams National Historical Park tells the story of four generations of the Adams family (from 1720 to 1927). The park has two main sites: the Birthplaces of 2nd U.S. President John Adams and 6th U.S. President John Quincy Adams, and Peacefield including the “Old House,” home to four generations of the Adams family, and the Stone Library which contains more than 14,000 historic volumes. 

Taking your kids to a presidential birthplace, home, library, or museum will make history real and tangible.  In the home of presidents John Adams and his son, President John Quincy Adams, your hands and your children's hands will run along the same banister that both presidents and their wives, General LaFayette, George Washington, John Hancock-- and all who came to visit the Adams family in Massachusetts--grasped as they walked up the steps to their bedrooms and President Adams' study.  They will hear the the same tick-tock of the grandfather clock that Abigail Adams listened to waiting for her husband to return home from his many journeys serving the new nation.  They will smell the same lilac and rose bushes that Abigail planted in her garden and walk the same garden paths that the presidents walked.  They will begin to understand that our nations leaders were real, imperfect, totally  human beings who believed in the values of democracy and public service. And they may be inspired to give service to their country themselves.

The National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance believes there is a direct growing link between literacy, historical literacy,  and civic engagement. Acting on that belief, in partnership with 108 award-winning young people's book authors and illustrators, the NCBLA has created an multiple award winning book, Our White House: Looking In, Looking Out (now in a new family affordable paperback edition) that promotes historical literacy.  This amazing anthology of American and presidential history is full of stunning art, poetry, nonfiction, historical fiction, and historical primary source information. We have created Our White House for adults to share with the young people in their lives-- truly a book for the whole family. And all proceeds from the book go toward future NCBLA programs and projects. 

The NCBLA has also created,with a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, a companion educational website for Our White House-www.ourwhitehouse.org -- where you will find a plethora of vital information that will help you plan a family outing to a presidential historical site, including the White House!

If you would like to plan a presidetial family field trip but do not know what presidetial historical site is closest to you, you can discover those great places near your home state at:

To prepare your kids for the field, check out our guide to taking your family on a historical field trip at: http://www.ourwhitehouse.org/fieldguidefam.html

and discover other helpful parent resources, including president and first lady facts, important web links, and great suggestions for family reading  at: 

If you would like to take your kids to the White House, go here to find the information you will need to plan your trip:  http://www.ourwhitehouse.org/fieldguidewhouse.html

And the get a copy of Our White House: Looking In, Looking Out at your favorite bookstore or neighborhood library and read about your favorite president before you and your family embark on a visit to a presidential historical site!

Find all the information you need to visit the Adams National Presidential Park at: