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Grace Goes to Washington

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In this follow-up to the New York Times bestseller Grace for President, award-winning duo Kelly DiPucchio and LeUyen Pham present a fun, kid-friendly introduction to the branches of American government as well as the struggle and joys that comes with being a public servant.

"Who's in charge here?"

When Grace learns about the three branches of the United States government, she and the rest of the student council put the lesson into practice as they debate how to spend the money from a school fund-raiser. The arguments continue as they travel to Washington, DC, for a field trip. Grace feels closer than ever to her dream of becoming president someday, but she and her classmates have a lot to learn about what it means to serve the needs of the people, especially when the people want such different things!

This follow-up to bestseller Grace for President teaches how the U.S. government makes decisions and also what it takes to be a true public servant.

40 pages, Hardcover

Published September 3, 2019

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About the author

Kelly DiPucchio

43 books237 followers
Kelly is the award-winning author of several children’s books, thousands of To-Do lists, and a few recipe cards. Two of her books, Grace For President and The Sandwich Swap, were New York Times bestsellers.

Like most kids who grew up in the 1970’s, Kelly had a pet goat and bought all her clothes from the Sears catalog. Like most teenagers who grew up in the 1980’s, Kelly had really big glasses and feathered hair.

Today, Kelly lives with her husband and three children in southeastern Michigan, where she enjoys writing just about everything except her own bio.

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 47 reviews
Profile Image for LaSheba Baker.
Author 1 book31 followers
February 16, 2022
Great! Grace learns about the three branches of U.S. government (judicial, legislative, and executive) and applies it to the classroom setting. This book has a good storyline and illustrations that reflect a cast of diverse races and ethnicities.

The book includes an author's note and a checklist of ideas to become more civic minded. A very educational and cute book! 💕👧🏾🎉


"While many of you reading this are too young to vote for the leaders who represent our country and make our laws, you are never too young to get involved." -From Author's Note

"Suggest holding a mock election in your classroom." -From ideas checklist

"Visit your local and state historical museums." -From ideas checklist
Profile Image for Nicole M. Hewitt.
1,413 reviews283 followers
October 8, 2019
Head over to the blog for a full review & giveaway - Feed Your Fiction Addiction

This book provides a fun way for kids to learn about the three branches of government. Woodrow Wilson Elementary’s student council has to decide how to use the money from a bake sale, but they can’t seem to agree. Grace realized that the way the student council works is sort of like the three branches of government (with the student council itself like Congress). Grace doubts that the student council will ever be able to come up with an idea they agree on. When she goes on a field trip to Washington DC, she sees a quote that inspires her to come up with a new plan, and the vote is a success!

This book is a perfect tool for the classroom and a great way to get kids thinking about how our government works. I love the fact that the author created a setting that kids could relate to (a school’s student council) and related it to something big and mystifying like our government. Plus, the overall message will inspire kids toward kindness, which is always a win. The book might be a little unrealistically optimistic when it comes to the voting results, but it is a children’s picture book—its goal is probably more inspiration and instruction than realism. 🙂

Useful notes at the end of the book explain a bit more about the jobs of each of the three branches of government, as well as list some ideas on how kids can make a difference in their communities!

***Disclosure: I was scheduled to receive this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, but it didn’t arrive in time, so I checked it out at my local library. No other compensation was given and all opinions are my own.***
Profile Image for Danielle Hammelef.
987 reviews123 followers
May 13, 2020
This book is an excellent introduction to how the US government operates. The author has included a diverse cast of characters who use lessons from the studies and field trip to Washington D.C. to pitch their ideas for spending bake sale money. The message is heartwarming and the illustrations are delightful. The backmatter gives additional information and ideas of how kids can make their own communities better places to live.
8 reviews1 follower
January 27, 2020
Grace Goes to Washington is a lively picture book that perfectly captures the beauty and power of a child's dreams for a better world. While learning about the branches of government in her class at school, Grace discovers a true passion for politics, fighting for underrepresented people, and for unity among her school. Between a field trip to Washington, DC, and serving on her school's student council, Grace learns how to exercise her voice to create positive change in her community. This realistic fiction text would be an excellent mentor text for teaching the branches of government to 5th graders. The following standard correlates directly to the text. 5.C&G.1.2 Summarize the organizational structures and powers of the United States government (legislative, judicial and executive branches of government). Additionally, Grace and her fellow classmates model active participation in their school community, and this could be used to encourage students to look out for positive changes they can make, to make the class and school community a more comfortable environment for all members. I am very impressed by the author's ability to use this realistic fiction piece to not only inspire the audience to get involved in communal affairs, but also she teaches the audience about the US government and its branches. Crafting a piece of literature that is both inspirational and informational is not a small feat. Wow!
Profile Image for Jennifer.
559 reviews19 followers
July 13, 2019
Today I read the upcoming Grace Goes to Washington, by Kelly DiPucchio and colorfully illustrated by LeUyen Pham. This title is due out September 3, 2019 from Disney-Hyperion and is another friendly and fun book about Grace and her adventures. (See also, Grace for President.)

As Grace’s class prepares for a field trip to Washington, DC, Mrs. Barrington prepares the children with a lesson about the three branches of government. She leads the learning about checks and balances, asking, “Who’s in charge here?” Later, while Grace and her fellow student council members work to decide how to spend the latest fundraiser money, they find correlations between their arguments and those of the government officials who run our country. With the help of a new friend, Grace can see that keeping an open mind to new perspectives and voting are two ways to get things done.

The author gives children the chance to get involved in government, even if they are not old enough to vote yet. Read the Author’s Note and list of how to be an involved citizen and make a difference. Kids and adults alike will love reading and sharing Grace Goes to Washington.
Profile Image for Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*.
6,001 reviews181 followers
May 8, 2020
Grace Goes to Washington by Kelly DiPucchio, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. PICTURE BOOK. Disney, 2019. $18. 9781368024334



Grace is on the school leadership team, but she is upset when the group can’t agree on what they should spend their bake sale money on. After a trip to Washington DC and an encounter with a new student, Grace has a new idea for the money.

If you want to introduce your students to how democracy can look in their classroom, this could be a useful book. It is not as user friendly as McNamara’s Vote For Our Future book, but it does help students apply the ideas in their own lives.

Cindy, Library Teacher, MLS
Profile Image for Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids.
1,952 reviews204 followers
April 6, 2021
“A finer, kinder world starts with us, and the choices we make.” Grace

Grace Goes To Washington written by @kellydipucchio and illustrated by @uyenloseordraw, is a fantastic read aloud, and a great resource in teaching kids the basics about how the US Government is run. Most importantly, this book teaches how to be a great leader and how to work with others.

I love how this book teaches the importance of good leadership and learning to work together through Grace and her classmates. Together as a student body, they have to learn how to help their school. It’s a relatable story for young readers. We are big fans of Grace and her stories. This is one we recommend reading!
Profile Image for Mary.
333 reviews
March 13, 2020
Do you know Grace for President and Grace Goes to Washington? If not, then stick with me to hear all the reasons that you should, especially right now. Are you looking for books featuring strong female characters for Women's History Month? Yes, Grace is fictional but has such aspirations for our future! How about books to read with your children during election madness? DiPucchio has you covered! Need a refresher on how the electoral college, the branches of government, and checks and balances work? Maybe read these more for yourself than for your children... A diverse main character and cast of supporting characters? Check! Wonderful messages of making good on promises and using teamwork and cooperation to find solutions that make everyone happy AND foster inclusivity? You betcha! Now that I've got you hooked, read on for a bit more about each of these wonderful titles.
In the follow-up to Grace for President, Grace Goes to Washington, Grace is balancing learning about how the United States government works (the 3 branches of government and their checks/balances) with working with the school principal and the rest of the student government to determine how to spend money earned through a bake sale. Grace pulls together opposing student council members, as well as a new student in school, to agree on a new, unique, and incredibly touching way to spend the school's money -- the Friendship Mall. Yes, this book teaches about important aspects of our governing bodies, but more importantly, Grace models incredible empathy, inclusivity, teamwork, cooperation, and so much more!
Profile Image for Jana.
2,588 reviews36 followers
September 20, 2019
Coming into a presidential election year, there is plenty going on in the news that young readers might be interested in learning more about. This cool picture book takes readers into Grace's school where her class is studying the branches of government in preparation for their field trip to Washington, D.C. At the same time, the student council of the school is having a hard time deciding what to do with the proceeds of their bake sale fundraising event. Readers will gain an understanding of the decision-making process in a democracy and will be inspired to find ways to get involved in their own schools and communities.
Profile Image for Christine Turner.
3,563 reviews47 followers
December 6, 2019
When Grace learns about the three branches of the United States government, she and the rest of the student council put the lesson into practice as they debate how to spend the money from a school fund-raiser. Should they buy new sports equipment? Books for the library? The arguments continue as they travel to Washington, DC, for a field trip. Exploring government buildings and national monuments, Grace feels closer than ever to her dream of becoming president someday. But she and her classmates have a lot to learn about what it means to serve the needs of the people, especially when the people want such different things!
Profile Image for Ember Air.
548 reviews14 followers
December 10, 2019
What an amazing continuation of this series! I really hope to see more! Grace and her class get to go to D.C. to tour the capital and learn about the three separate branches of the government. The author once again does an amazing job of sneaking tons of information into a quick-paced story. Grace and the other students on the council are trying to decide how to spend their newly acquired bake sale fund and can't agree. They use the inspiration from the capital to learn that all public servants are just that - servants to the public, and in order to do that correctly they must listen to their public, or in this case, their fellow students.
October 24, 2020
This book is such a GREAT book for teaching the three branches of the government. Grace goes to Washington, sees the sights, and applies what she learned in student council. I love how the three branches of government were compared to the school council. It makes this sometimes tricky concept easy for students to understand. There is also a great message about friendship and building a kind community in this story. This book also features diverse characters, which is always great!

Ways to use in the classroom
- social studies, when teaching about the branches of government
- building a community/working for change, leadership
138 reviews1 follower
September 9, 2019
Grace learns about the three branches of government right before her trip to Washington, D.C. Inspired by the quote at the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial, Grace introduces a new idea for spending the bake sale money to the student council right before they vote. The vote is unanimous and a friendship mall (from the Washington Mall) where people can go to help make friends is the winner. This is a good overview of the three branches of government, and the true point of leadership. Recommended for grades 1-3.
Profile Image for Kirsti Call.
Author 7 books57 followers
September 18, 2019
"We're calling it the Friendship Mall!" Thomas said proudly...."It's a place you can go at recess to let other students know when you need a friend...."

GRACE GOES TO WASHINGTON is the perfect companion to GRACE FOR PRESIDENT. Expressive illustrations combine with informative text to help kids learn more about the branches of government in a relatable way. Filled with quotes from Martin Luther King Jr. about kindness and how to make the world a better place, this is a great resource for homes and classrooms.
10 reviews
November 13, 2019
This book was a great book. It was very different from other children's picture books because it was about the government. It talked about the different branches of the government and showed how students in a school ran for their schools campaign. This is a great book to introduce the subject of the government to students because it really helps students understand the process of the electoral system. I think this is a great book to have in a classroom library for grades K-3rd. I am so glad I found this book, I would love to have it in my classroom library.
Profile Image for BookDrunkard.
390 reviews6 followers
January 23, 2020
Book shows character diversity by having students, teachers, and the principal being depicted from different ethnic backgrounds. As well, throughout the story, children learn about different branches of the government, even stating that anyone can be president - whether they are a man or a woman. At the back of the book, there is an explanation of exactly what each branch of government is and what they do. In addition, there is a list of ways children can get involved in making a difference in their school, family and community.
199 reviews
May 27, 2021
We like this book a lot, but not as much as the first one. I think that the author did a great job giving families an intro to the branches of government, and that the problem lies in the fact that it's just a complex concept that's tough for little brains...and big ones too! I think it would have been really tempting to include little text boxes with more info about the branches, and I'm so glad that they didn't do that, instead just focusing on the story. The book is a great jump-off point, and people can just youtube that stuff afterwards.
Profile Image for Bethany M. Edwards.
78 reviews18 followers
July 1, 2019
This sequel to GRACE FOR PRESIDENT is worth every minute of the wait.

Thus sequel is just as gorgeous, informative, and delightful as the first. You won’t be disappointed. Teachers/librarians, grab this mentor text for your classroom library ASAP.

GRACE GOES TO WASHINGTON should be THE go to for the upcoming election year to teach, inspire, and give hope to young readers as well as the adults.
Profile Image for Melissa Nikohl.
116 reviews2 followers
February 13, 2020
My fav, Grace and her classmates are heading to Washington D.C. for a field trip! But, before they leave, there is a dispute on how to spend the school’s fundraiser money.

Grace and her friends find out that they’ll have to give up some of their wants in order to help others.

I love how Kelly DiPucchio infuses social studies in these books! If you’re looking for a fun way to teach the three branches of government, you need this book!
Profile Image for Maison Durr.
42 reviews
October 5, 2021
Grace Goes to Washington is a story about a girl named Grace who is struggling with getting their student government to agree on a project. During a field trip to Washington, she learns how government works and becomes inspired by all the historical monuments. It is a cute story that explores how our government is supposed to work and the importance of cooperation. This realistic fiction is written by Kelly DiPucchio.
Profile Image for Brenda Kahn.
3,649 reviews53 followers
July 2, 2019
Terrific picture book that helps young readers understand the three branches of government by comparing them to the way decisions might be made in a school. Energetic, even exuberant illustrations. Suggestions at the end to encourage youth citizenship and activism.
952 reviews
January 21, 2020
Nice lesson on the branches of government and parallel SGA. Students at my school don’t even know what SGA stands for, so this will be helpful on several levels. Art is fantastic and story is clear and makes sense-don’t have to withhold your disbelief.
Profile Image for Dwan Dawson-Tape.
221 reviews3 followers
June 18, 2019
Gorgeous illustrations full of life back up an interesting story about leadership, citizenship and compassion. I'd love to see this in school libraries!!
1,229 reviews
October 2, 2019
A lot to squeeze into one picture book, but I appreciated the civics lesson and the ultimate messages of inclusion and accessible activism.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 47 reviews

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