Tot Book Club

More Than Just a Story

Duck for President

Book 5 of 40
When I taught preschool, I always loved to pull out
Duck for President by Doreen Cronin as a fun introduction to voting, and of course hard work. This confident duck, who you may recognize from Click Clack Moo, thinks as he climbs the ladder of status, life get easier. After tiring of his responsibilities as a duck, he sets his eyes on the farmer's job. He holds an election and the farm animals vote him into office. Surprisingly, life as a farmer is even harder than life as a duck, so mayor is next, then governor, and finally president. Each time he tires of the hard work required of him, and he learns that the grass isn't always greener.
Duck for President is a great springboard book for a study on government positions or even more simply on community helpers. It's also a good discussion starter about responsibilities and hard work, and unlike Duck, perhaps the hard work pays off with diligence! :)
On the other hand, there are some fun ways to just enjoy the book for what it is, a silly tale about a duck joining the political world!

  1. Talk about the vocabulary
  2. Make Messy Ducks: Print or draw a picture of a duck and then cover him in all the muck! You've got lots of options: weeds, dust, grass, hay, horsehair, seeds, sprouts, feathers, mud, syrup, hair spray, ink, scotch tape, fingerprints, mayonnaise, face powder, staples, security badges, etc..
  3. Make a duck mask or two, so you can have a clean duck and a dirty duck! For the dirty mask, pick some of the ingredients that duck was covered in at the end of each day after one of his many jobs, and throw them on there!
  4. Make Campaign Posters: Take a look back at the illustrations and see what funny posters Duck made for his campaigns. Then come up with your own slogan and decorate your own poster. The large format of a poster board will give your tot plenty of room to make broad strokes and let creativity flow.
  5. Hold a Vote: choose an issue at home or even vote on dinners for the next week. Make up ballots, a ballot box, and vote. Count the votes, and remember to keep your eye out for sticky ballots!
  6. Set up a Coffee ground sensory bin and add some farm animals to it!
  7. Make chore charts: Talk about what jobs your tot has around the house, or start offering jobs around the house. Your tot can help you with loading the dishwasher or washing machine, or holding the dustpan while you sweep, or setting the table. On her own she could be sure to put her shoes away, dirty clothes in the laundry basket, and even putting her dishes in the sink. Make a list of how each family member helps the house run smoothly, just like Duck's farm.
  8. Go to a Diner: You don't have to kiss any babies, but enjoy some pancakes and discuss the surroundings, listen to what other people are talking about nearby.
  9. Watch then Governor Bill Clinton play saxophone on late night television then have your own little talent show. Do whatever sounds like fun: make your own instruments, sing a song, make up a dance, tell jokes…
  10. Work on your autobiography: Find some baby pictures of your tot and even yourself, then tell stories. Make a timeline of your tot's life or your's if your tot is interested.

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