Who Was

Ages 7-12 | Grades 1-6



Why Boys Will Read It:

The exciting range of people featured (including musicians and current figures!) will motivate readers, and the illustrations will keep interest levels high.


What It's About:

These illustrated biographies provide a lot of great information about fascinating figures in history (and current figures too!) while still providing entertainment through the short chapters and illustrations.

Using these books and the bibliographies included in the back as a starting place, have students do research on one of the famous figures in the Who Was series. Encourage them to look on educational websites for additional resources, such as videos or pictures as well, and have them create a report or website with what they find. Have students go one step further, and have them write a biography about themselves, someone in their family, or a good friend that follows the structure of the Who Was series books.


How to Teach It:

Using these books and the bibliographies included in the back as a starting place, have students do research on one of the famous figures in the Who Was series. Encourage them to look on educational websites for additional resources, such as videos or pictures as well, and have them create a report or website with what they find. Have students go one step further, and have them write a biography about themselves, someone in their family, or a good friend that follows the structure of the Who Was series books.

For classroom materials please visit http://www.WhoWasBookSeries.com


Series Books


Who Was Babe Ruth?

by Joan Holub, illustrated by Ted Hammond

Babe Ruth came from a poor Baltimore family and, as a kid, he was a handful. It was at a reform school that Babe discovered his talent for baseball, and by the age of nineteen, he was on his way to becoming a sports legend.



Who Was Dr. Seuss?

by Janet Pascal, illustrated by Nancy Harrison
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

Ted Geisel loved to doodle from the time he was a kid. He had an offbeat, fun-loving personality. He often threw dinner parties where guests wore outrageous hats! And he donned quirky hats when thinking up ideas for books—like his classic The Cat in the Hat. This biography, with black-and-white illustrations throughout, brings an amazingly gifted author/illustrator to life.



Who Was Elvis Presley?

by Geoff Edgers
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

The King could not have come from humbler origins, but he forged a sound and a look all his own. With a curled lip, swiveling hips, and a greased pompadour, Elvis changed popular music forever, ushering in the age of rock and roll.



Who Was Harry Houdini?

by Tui Sutherland
Ages 8-12 | Grades 2-6

Every kid has heard of Harry Houdini, the famous magician who could escape from handcuffs, jail cells, and locked trunks. But do they know that the ever-ambitious and adventurous Houdini was also a famous movie star and the first pilot to fly a plane in Australia?



Who Was Jackie Robinson

by Gail Herman
Ages 8-12 | Grades 3-7

As a kid, Jackie Robinson was a natural at football, basketball, and of course, baseball. In 1947 Jackie joined the Brooklyn Dodgers, breaking the long-time color barrier in major league baseball. Here is an inspiring sports biography, with black-and-white illustrations throughout.



Who Was Johnny Appleseed

by Joan Holub
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

Over John Chapman's lifetime, he saw the country grow and start to spread westward. Traveling alone, he left his own special mark planting orchards that helped nourish new communities.



Who Was King Tut?

by Roberta Edwards
Ages 8-12 | Grades 2-6

Ever since Howard Carter uncovered King Tutankhamun's tomb in 1922, the young pharaoh has become a symbol of the wealth and mystery of ancient Egypt. This book explains the life and times of this ancient Egyptian ruler, covering the story of the tomb's discovery, as well as myths and so-called mummy curses.



Who Was Marco Polo

by Joan Holub
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

Marco Polo traveled from the medieval city of Venice to the fabled kingdom of the great Kublai Khan, seeing new sights and riches that no Westerner had ever before witnessed. But did Marco Polo experience the things he wrote about or was it all made-up?



Who Was Martin Luther King Jr.

by Bonnie Bader
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was only 25 when he started organizing for basic civil rights. Learn more about his nonviolent tactics for advocacy in this informative biography.



Who Is Neil Armstrong?

by Roberta Edwards
Ages 9-11 | Grades 3-6

On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon and, to an audience of over 450 million people, proclaimed his step a "giant leap for mankind." This Eagle Scout built his own model planes as a little boy and then grew up to be a test pilot for experimental aircraft before becoming one of the most famous astronauts of all time.



Who Was Walt Disney?

by Whitney Stewart
Ages 8-12 | Grades 2-6

Walt Disney's affection for his small-town childhood is reflected in Disneyland Main Streets around the world. With black-and-white illustrations throughout, this biography reveals more about the man behind the magic.



Who Were The Beatles

by Geoff Edgers
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

Almost everyone can sing along with the Beatles, but how many young readers know the whole store? Read all about their childhoods, first forays into rock music, why they broke up, and all the Beatlemania in between!



Who Was Paul Revere?

by Roberta Edwards, illustrated by John OBrien
Ages 7-11 | Grades 1-6

In 1775, Paul Revere of Boston made his now-famous horseback ride warning colonists of an impending attack by the British. This event went largely unnoticed in history until Longfellow celebrated it in a poem in 1861. So who was Paul Revere? This biography, with black-and-white illustrations throughout, brings to life Paul Revere's thrilling ride as well as the personal side of the man and the exciting times in which he lived.


Click here for a full listing and details about the Who Was titles