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The Great Little Madison

3.56 of 5 stars 3.56  ·  rating details  ·  334 ratings  ·  62 reviews
In the days before microphones and TV interviews, getting people to listen to you was not an easy task. But James Madison used his quiet eloquence, intelligence and passion for unified colonies to help shape the Constitution, steer America through the turmoil of two wars, and ensure that our government, and nation, remained intact.u?An excellent, fascinating, indispensable ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published February 23rd 1998 by Puffin Books (first published January 1st 1948)
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Beth
This book was recommended to me by my Granddaughter who read it in her book club. It was a juvenile book honored in 1990. More history than biography, it gives substantial text to the history surrounding the life of the President who lived through the making and maturing of the US as a country. It was a grand review for me of what I should have retained from my school years. I relearned about the Continental Congress and the Constitution. The narrative included Patrick Henry and his challenges t ...more
Sara Hannon
1. Junior Book, Biography

2. The Great Little Madison tells the story of James Madison from his childhood to writing the Constitution and his presidency. It shows that a little person, with a little voice, can still do so much.

3. This is a wonderfully written book that gives the reader a great picture of what James Madison was really like, from his small stature to his small voice. The best aspect of this book is its voice. It is a history book that deals with a great deal of subject matter. Madi
...more
Liz
From my blog: http://kidlitaboutpolitics.wordpress....

This biography is written as if middle grade kids are thinking people. It's written for someone who wants to know about James Madison and the first 40 years of the United States. The book could be used to write a report, but unlike some biographies for middle grade readers, it could also be used by a student of history who loves to read about the people involved in the founding of the United States.

James Madison was a short man with a small v
...more
Caelyn Pietila
The Great little Madison, written by Jean Fritz is about James Madison, who helped the United States during his presidency. He helped construct the constitution, and this book can be used as a teaching tool during a social studies unit of American history. I would read this story to fifth graders, since this is an age group that learns about the presidents in elementary school. I would do a lesson on all of the presidents, and then to focus on president’s who truly made a difference in our count ...more
Klarissa-sue Isaak
This is a nonfiction book about James Madison's life. In this book you learn that James was a small man with a high pitched voice, and wasn't well respected like his friend, Thomas Jefferson. James used his communication skills to unify the colonies. He helped shape the Constitution, and steer America through two wars.
I liked this book because it made a man who lived a long time ago very human and relatable. It was historically accurate and gave life to the man who we don't really talk about in
...more
E
Potential Problems: Can be a long, boring read at times
Personal Response: I found it interesting, but also a bit controversial at times.
Samantha
The Great Little Madison is a wonderful summary of an exciting period in American history. Beginning shortly before the Revolution and ending after the War of 1812, the reader learns that the country has been divided down party lines literally since it's inception. Though the founding fathers did not intend for it to be this way, there has always been political fighting, badmouthing, and lack of unity in the United States. Madison is one of the people who stood up for unity and freedom - even hi ...more
Laura
The Great Little Madison

1-Genre: Biography

2-James Madison may have been a soft-spoken man but that did not stop his voice from being heard. This book explains how Madison stuck to his passions and allowed others to stick to theirs as well, but Madison was still a man that could get things done. He was able to keep our young country intact, while insuring the rights of all.

3-(a) The author’s use of humor.
(b) It is very tricky writing a nonfiction children’s book and still being able to keep the
...more
Justine Bishop
This book tells the story of James Madison, who was the fourth president of the United States. The book starts with Madison as a sickly child, and follows him through his life up till his death in 1836. The best part about this book is that it gives some interesting and accurate lesser known facts about the former president. This book was fairly interesting even though I do not have much interest on this topic. I think that it would be a great book to share with kids who are interested in the pr ...more
Amy
"The Great Little Madison" is a nonfiction book. This book is intended for children in the age group of intermediate. Before there were things like telephones or cameras, people had to travel by foot for everything, even when you are trying to get people to sway their vote to you. James Madison is a great man in history that stood up for what he believed in and made sure it was known. The book talks about great men in history and why they were called great.

I gave this book a rating of 5 stars.
...more
Tara Kollman
This novel was the first winner of the Orbis Pictus Award in 1990. This story, tells the tale, of The United States of America’s fourth President, James Madison. His life is detailed from the time he was just a small sick boy, to the time he was running for president having to face the challenges of the election process, to his time spent in the White House. He was small in stature and did not have a commanding voice. However, that did not stop him from gaining the Presidency. The book continues ...more
Erin Fowler
This book truly made learning about history fun! If you teach 4th or 5th grade history it is a must! Travel back in time to learn more about the history of our country when America was just starting out on its own. Walk in the footsteps of famous Americans like Jefferson, Washington, Adams and of course Madison. I never knew how dedicated to our nation this president was. Pick this book up! You will be glad you did!
Kursten
This was a quick, easy read while being very informative. Also, I learned some things about Madison that helped me understand how important he was in the forming of the Constitution. He was one of the main instigators of the Constitutional Convention. He took detailed notes during the whole Convention and then later co-wrote the Federalist Papers to defend it. He stayed true to his beliefs in creating a Union between the states while fighting to preserve proper checks and balances between the di ...more
Stacey
James Madison started out as an unhealthy, little boy in Virginia. He went on to become a Founding Father, the author of the Constitution and the fourth president of the US. He commanded during the War of 1812 and showed Britain that America was truly a nation.
Really interesting, I guess. I was told to read this book in sections, and it helped. A lot of information presented in an entertaining way. I personally can have a lot of trouble reading nonfiction, but this book had an overall story that
...more
Tirzah
"Little Jimmy" was my one and only historical crush. It was seventh or eighth grade while reading about James Madison's influential role in American history when I kinda sorta fell for him. He was a short, quiet men and yet made such an impact on shaping our country. The history book of course only talked about his role in The Federalist Papers and Constitution, but I wanted to know more about his life. Therefore, my mom found Jean Fritz's biography and I read it with great interest. It is writt ...more
Julie
This is a well written read for children and youth. It gives enough great history about James Madison to be of value, but also is written in Fritz's captivating style. I highly recommend.
Jonna VanWienen
This little book is a long read. It is full of information. I now have lots of dots connected and understand relationships between other Founding Fathers much better.
Nancy
Every child deserves to read Jean Fritz books. The best things I know about American history, I learned from reading her books.
Natalie Quinn
Children enjoy reading biographies about U.S. Presidents and other political leaders. This particular one is about the fourth President of the United States, James Madison. Talks a lot about how different things were during those times and even though it wasn't easy to get people to listen to your political views, Madison was able to overcome that and still get his voice heard. I think this would be great to include in a fifth grade class or possibly younger, but it does go along with the fifth ...more
Jody
This is great nonfiction. I learned a lot and hope the kids who are reading this are gleaning some cool facts as well.
Chantel
Great overview of an amazing mans life. Detailed enough and at the same time now overwhelming for the children it's aimed for. I enjoyed it.
Emily D
i didn't like it at all i thought it was super boring!!!!!!
Natalie
James Maddison was a small sick man. He was a very learned man, and had a great education. He got to go to collage and study, but, he got ill and had to go home for fear of dying. He soon took interest in politics because of his good friend Thomas Jefferson. He tried politics himself but, people didn't believe in him because of his size and stature. But James Maddison proved them wrong. Even though he was small he made a big difference in the world. I loved this book it was one of my favorite th ...more
Chloe
I read it for school so what do you expect? It was good, but i probably won't read it again. I would definitely recommend it to people looking for information on James and/or Dolly Madison.
Maria
I learned so much about American History from this book. It's interesting how history DOES repeat itself! Some of the same issues that are happening now in our US Presidency were happening back in Madison's time. Political corruption is not new. I can't believe Aaron Burr killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel and got away with it. I am so amazed that Madison went to such grea lengths to protect religious freedom and freedom of speech even if it meant it inconvenienced him.
Lisa
I've wanted to read a biography of James Madison for some time, but haven't had time to tackle anything lengthy. After reading this, I decided that it's probably very hard to condense a life like Madison's into a 159 page book. Most of the book is just fact after fact, awkwardly arranged into sentences and paragraphs. The chapters on the U.S. War of 1812 are the best, and helped me put several events into context. Overall, though, this isn't a very interesting book.
Rachael Caisedo
This is a great easy reader for forth, fifth, and sixth graders. I think this book is a good choice if a teacher is teaching about the presidents. It is also a good example of a biography. As an assignment I think I would have the students complete a beginning, middle, and end chart of James Madison's life. They would use the book to write sentences about Madison when he was young, when he was a young adult, and his later years before he passed away.
Laura Sims
This non-fiction book was the first winner of the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children in 1990. The book has good information and is told in a more narrative manner. The drawings and engravings are chosen well and match the information. there is a lot of information in this book that I was not aware of, but it's very wordy. It's a good book though.
Marianne
Jean fritz did a great job at writing The Great Little Madison. It was an enjoying book and I wasn't board by it at all. It really goes into detail about Madison life and I love that the book does that. I learned a lot about Madison and realize he had a lot of hard times while he was president. Little Madison made a great impact on our country!
Megan
Apr 14, 2011 Megan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Megan by: "How Do We Say Thank You, Jean Fritz?" Book Links 1/11
Like Fritz's other books, this is a highly readable biography that highlights the humanity of its subject, making Madison seem real to the reader. Maps, illustrations, a bibliography, and an index make this useful to students doing research, but it would also be a book to recommend to history buffs for pleasure reading.
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Jean Fritz is a children’s author who has a fascination with writing historical fictions. She was born on November 16, 1915, in Hankow, China to missionary parents. After living in China for 13 years, Fritz and her family moved back to the United States. Beginning her career with an English degree, Fritz became an award-winning and respected author. She has received an honor for every book that sh ...more
More about Jean Fritz...
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