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The Civil War for Kids: A History with 21 Activities (For Kids series) Paperback – November 1, 1999

4.7 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Grade 4-8-Using a clear style and lively tone, this book provides a look at the Civil War and its leaders and includes activities such as battle reenactments and recipes for soldiers' rations. The contributions of women, African Americans, and even children are described. Sidebars provide biographical and other information about individual soldiers and events. Occasional quotes provide a humanistic view of the war. Antislavery is offered as the main reason for the war, with only a brief mention that other reasons even existed. Maps and black-and-white reproductions are scattered throughout. A lengthy resource list of historical sites, museums, and Web sites is appended. Most of the activities require adult supervision and are geared toward groups, making them ideal for classrooms.
Sarah Smith, Harrison Community Library, MI
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

"Offers students a crash course on a subject that has spawned countless books and movies, and it's fun as well as informative."  —KLIATT
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 and up
  • Grade Level: 4 and up
  • Series: For Kids series
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press (November 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1556523556
  • ISBN-13: 978-1556523557
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 0.3 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,289 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I love history! And I hope my books will inspire kids to feel the same way. Find out more about me and my award-winning books at www.janisherbertforkids.com.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The two main elements of "The Civil War for Kids: A History With 21 Activities" work independently of each other. In the main text Janis Herbert provides a concise history of the Civil War that provides a more in-depth look at that period of American history than what young students are likely to find in their textbooks at school. Herbert begins with the turmoil preceding succession and the first shots fired at Fort Sumter, the battles fought on land and seas, up to the Confederate surrender at Appomattox. The text is supplemented with dozens of sidebar stories providing details on everything from Lincoln's beard and Johnny Clem to what Army engineers did and what "Chickamaugua" meant. The book is illustrated with historic photographs and drawings, as well as battlefield maps. There is a time-line of the Civil War up front and a glossary, guide to officers, list of resources, bibliography and index in the back.
The other key part of this book are the 21 activities that are scattered throughout its pages and provide a wide variety of experiences to give young readers in or out of class. Some of the activities are fairly detailed, such as making a North Star Safe Quilt or your own soldier's uniform, and acting out the battle of Antietam (really, but you need 30 kids). Others are fairly simple, like making a coffee can drum and having a Rebel yell contest. Several of the activities are specific to the fighting of the war, such as creating a code, signaling with a wigwag, measuring the depth of a pond or river, building a lean-to- shelter, and making battlefield bandages. A few of the exercises are duplications of things people would have actually done during the war, such as making berry ink, a housewife sewing kit, homemade butternut dye, and hardtack.
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Comment 49 of 51 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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By A Customer on April 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
We are using this book for a homeschool unit on the Civil War with eight-year-old twins. The chapters give them an interesting overview of this history of the war, but the hands on activities have really made them excited about what they are learning. We have made hardtack (recipe included in the book), facsimile uniforms, lean-tos, and quilts. Most of the activities can easily be accomplished by one or two kids, but some are more appropriate for an entire classroom. The graphics and photographs are exceptional. I am eager to use other books by Chicago Review Press to supplement our study.
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Format: Paperback
After buying Ms. Herbert's gorgeous "Leonardo da Vinci for Kids," I bought this book. Notwithstanding my high expectations for this book, I was not in the least bit disappointed. Ms. Herbert has again written an interesting and informative book with entertaining activities that enhance and reinforce the educational value of the book. As the previous reviewer noted, a small number of the activities in this book really need groups of children to make them effective, but overall the book can be recommended for all.
An interesting aside -- adults who enjoy this book should check out the author's first (and adult) book, which was written under the name Janis Martinson. In "The World Don't Owe Me Nothing: The Life and Times of Delta Bluesman Honeyboy Edwards," the author took the exact words of Mr. Edwards and constructed an fascinating autobiography that is also quite an interesting history lesson.
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Format: Paperback
I recently used this book with my students who have both learning disabilities and emotional disturbances. I used it in conjuction with the state mandated US History book. I found the extra information I was able to inteject into my lectures to be interesting. My students enjoyed the extra tidbits. They gathered around the book to look at the 9 year-old soldier. They wrote letters as if they were soldiers with the ink they made from the book's recipe. I think it helped to enrich the Civil War lessons I had planned. I recommend this book to other teachers. With a little tweaking, I think that the activities are appropriate for students in elementary school as well as in high school.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am homeschooling my boys ages 8 and 10. I bought this book after seeing the World War 2 version while visiting Pearl Harbor. These books are a great way to bring History to life. My kids are always looking at them during free time and they love the activities that are taught.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book my kids love ( maybe I should give it 5 stars just for that alone ). Lots of fun things to do - we've yet to try the butternut dyeing but as soon as their mum goes to work..... ??? This is just the book to get fathers banned from the kitchen, and probably the whole house as there's so many fun activities to rekindle the childhood we forgot we didn't have ? Hell, just buy it, better value than a family meal at McD's, and the starving would give a real War experience beyond the scope of this fine book.
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Format: Paperback
One of our best purchases for homeschooling this year. Good information in an easily readable format with interesting illustrations and activities for children to get a hands-on feeling for what was happening or the routines that were in place. We are all learning from the book so it is a great way to share history as a family and has provoked dinner time and car ride discussions as well -- and this with an 8-year-old! I would highly recommend.
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