Lesson Plans Coolidge, Grace

 

Coolidge, Grace
How a Bill Becomes a Law
Grace Coolidge was the first First Lady to get Congress to pass a bill to protect items in the White House.  With the passage of this bill, Grace Coolidge began to inventory White House items.  The Coolidges left the White House before she finished.  Lou Hoover took over where Grace Coolidge left off and completed the task. 
Skill: Elementary School     Category: Law, Politics and Govt

Coolidge, Grace
American Sign Language
Prior to marrying Calvin Coolidge, Grace Anna Goodhue taught beginning and intermediate sign language at Clarke School for the Deaf.  After getting married, she continued her involvement with the school, as a fundraiser rather than a teacher.  By March 4, 1929, she had raised two million dollars for the school.  When they retired, the Coolidge family moved to Northampton, Massachusetts so Grace could be close to the school.
Skill: Elementary School     Category: Education, Arts, Letters and Ideas

Coolidge, Grace
Will Rogers
Though a man of few words, Calvin Coolidge was known for his Yankee wit.  Once at a dinner party a woman told him that a friend told her that she would not be able to get the President to say three words.  The woman took her friend's bet.  Upon hearing this, the President turned to his guest and said, “You lose.”  Perhaps it was this sense of humor that led the Coolidges to become good friends with humorist Will Rogers.  Or perhaps the friendship stayed strong because of Grace Coolidge’s noted charm and extroversion.
Skill: Elementary School     Category: First Ladies' Lives

Coolidge, Grace
A League of Their Own
Grace Coolidge was not only known as the First Lady of the United States, she was also known as “The First Lady of Baseball.”  She could be found in the audience of every opening game of the World Series and at Fenway Park throughout the season.  When not at a game in person, she was often at home in front of her radio listening to the game.  In the 1950’s she wrote to a close friend, “I venture to say that not one of you cares a hoot about baseball but to me it is my very life.”
Skill: Elementary School     Category: Sports and Popular Culture

Coolidge, Grace
Police Strikes
In 1919, Grace Coolidge was at home in Northampton with her sons while her husband served as the Governor of Massachusetts in Boston.  Calvin forbade his wife from being involved in politics and saw no reason for her to join him in Boston.  In 1919, the Boston Police Strike propelled Calvin into the national spot light, and eventually, the White House.  Though still not involved directly in politics, Grace’s popularity as first lady became a political asset for the president.  
Skill: Elementary School     Category: Religion, Social Issues and Reform

Coolidge, Grace
Red Crescent/Red Cross
Calvin Coolidge’s controlling nature limited the activities of First Lady Grace Coolidge.  He allowed her no say in the household management of the White House, nor was she permitted to determine what guests would visit.  Calvin Coolidge simply wanted his wife to look pretty at all times.  Though greatly controlled and restricted, in World War I, Grace Coolidge became involved in the Red Cross.  She continued her involvement throughout her life.
Skill: Middle School     Category: Science, Medicine, Inventions and tech

Coolidge, Grace
Frugality: How Much Do You Cost?
“Silent Cal” Coolidge was known as a very frugal man; frugal with his words and frugal in his daily life.  President Coolidge thought the twenty-one gun salute was too expensive and as a result the Star Spangled Banner was played instead when he arrived.  Perhaps because of his frugality or, perhaps, because of his view of women, President Coolidge forbade Grace Coolidge from being involved in anything that had to do with managing the White House.  Instead he managed all household activities including grocery shopping at the local Piggly Wiggle.
Skill: Middle School     Category: First Ladies' Lives

Coolidge, Grace
Superstitions
Though Calvin Coolidge was a very controlling husband, in one arena Grace Coolidge reigned – the baseball stadium.  Grace and Calvin Coolidge attended baseball games because Grace, not Calvin was a baseball fan, particularly a fan of the Boston Red Sox.  In an ornately lettered appreciation the Boston Red Sox and Washington Senators named Grace Coolidge the “First Lady of the Land, First Land of Baseball.”  As an avid Red Sox fan she surely was aware of the Curse of the Bambino, perhaps the most famous sports superstition.
Skill: Middle School     Category: Sports and Popular Culture

Coolidge, Grace
White House Celebrations
Grace Coolidge is responsible for numerous White House Christmas traditions.  In 1923, she gave permission for the District of Columbia Public Schools to erect a Christmas tree in President’s Park (now know as Ellipse Park).  Organizers named it the “National Christmas Tree.”   President Calvin Coolidge became the first president to light the Christmas tree.  The night of the Christmas tree lighting the “President’s Own” Marine Band quartet performed a choral concert which was followed by the first White House Christmas caroling.  In 1925, the Coolidges arranged for the Christmas tree lightening ceremony to be broadcast over radio and thus began another White House Christmas tradition.
Skill: Middle School     Category: Religion, Social Issues and Reform

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