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10 Presidential Fun Facts For Kids

president featuredMy 5 year old son and I have been spending a lot of time talking about Presidents recently. First there was the election, which gave us a chance to talk about what the President does, how the President gets the job, and what happens after the President is elected. He was so interested in the Presidency that I got him a place mat with pictures of all the Presidents on it and he’s been asking lots of questions about what each of them did in office. It turns out that, for a political geek, I know shockingly little about most of our Presidents. And what I do know? Is very difficult to explain simply. For example, telling a 5 year old about the Iranian hostage crisis of the late 70′s will not make him think of Jimmy Carter as a master diplomat. It will cause him to obsess about why the Ayatollah hated Americans. Also, Watergate just sounds bizarre when you break it down into its most basic facts.

In honor of my ignorance and the upcoming President’s day holiday, I started digging around for some more child friendly facts about the 44 men who have presided over our nation. Aside from the usual historical highlights like Washington assuming the office for the first time, Teddy Roosevelt and National Parks, Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation, and father-son Presidents like the the Adamses and Bushes, there are a lot of interesting stories that have come out of the White House over the years.

Here are a few fun tidbits that may help spark an interest in history and politics or at least give everyone a good chuckle!

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  • Towering Figure 1 of 10
    Towering Figure
    The tallest President was Abraham Lincoln (1861-65). He stood 6 feet, 4 inches (193 centimeters) tall. -
    National Geographic
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • BIg Guy 2 of 10
    BIg Guy
    The heaviest President was William Howard Taft (1909-13), who sometimes tipped the scales at more than 300 pounds (136 kilograms) during his tenure. After he became stuck in the White House bathtub, Taft ordered a new one installed. The replacement was big enough to hold four grown men of average size. -
    National Geographic
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • Polar Bear Preisdent 3 of 10
    Polar Bear Preisdent
    John Quincy Adams (1825-29), the sixth President, customarily took a nude early morning swim in the Potomac River. -
    National Geographic
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • Patriotic Farewell 4 of 10
    Patriotic Farewell
    John Adams (1797-1801), the second President, and Thomas Jefferson (1801-09), the third President, both died on July 4, 1826. -
    National Geographic
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • Wild Life 5 of 10
    Wild Life
    When Lewis and Clark were exploring the West, two young bear cubs were sent East to President Jefferson. He kept the bears in a cage on the White House lawn and occasionally went on walks with them. -
    Huffington Post
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • High Crimes 6 of 10
    High Crimes
    Bill Clinton (1993-2001), the 42nd President, was the second President to be impeached. In 1998 Clinton was impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives but acquitted by the Senate. Andrew Johnson was impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives in 1868, but he was also later acquitted by the Senate. -
    National Geographic
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • South Paws 7 of 10
    South Paws
    There were eight left-handed presidents: James A. Garfield, Herbert Hoover, Harry S. Truman, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama. -
    InfoPlease.com
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • First Lady 8 of 10
    First Lady
    The term "First Lady" was first used in 1877 in reference to Lucy Ware Webb Hayes. Most First Ladies, including Jackie Kennedy, are said to have hated the label. -
    InfoPlease.com
    Photo Credit: The White House
  • Aptly Named Pet 9 of 10
    Aptly Named Pet
    James Garfield had a dog named Veto -
    Classroomhelp.com
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery
  • Ready For His Close Up 10 of 10
    Ready For His Close Up
    In the 1940's Gerald Ford did a bit of modeling and even posed on the cover of "Cosmopolitan." His wife Betty was also a dancer and fashion model, who signed with the John Robert Powers modeling firm to finance her dance education. -
    Huffington Post
    Photo Credit: National Portrait Gallery

Read more from Rebekah at Mom-in-a-MillionThe Broad Side. Follow Rebekah on Facebook and Twitter too!

Photo credit: photo stock

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