Lesson 1: Getting to Know Abigail Adams
In the first two chapters, you've gotten to know young Abigail Smith and learned of her courtship with John Adams. In the next lesson, you'll learn about the early years of their married life and the ways in which John and Abigail balanced the demands of his career, the responsibilities of running a farm, family life, and their personal relationship, all against the backdrop of the unrest that would lead to the American Revolution.
Life Application (optional)
If an author planned a biography of your life, consider what he or she might include in the following sections of the book:
- Title: If the author used a structure like Abigail Adams: Witness to a Revolution, what would come after your name in the title of the book about your life?
- Cover Image: Which picture of you might the author and editor choose for the cover, and would there be any background images?
- Timeline: Which significant events would be included on the timeline of your life?
- Map: Which places would you want to show a reader to help him or her understand your life more fully?
Questions to Discuss
- When Abigail Adams was growing up, what were the expectations for women? (Women were supposed to be primarily concerned with marriage and motherhood and were not necessarily supposed to be educated. Abigail Adams was taught by her mother to accept her lot in life and to be kind, caring, and compassionate.)
- What did John Adams see in Abigail Adams that helped him to fall in love with her? (Answers may vary, but your child might mention her intelligence, her willingness to stand up to him, her looks, her modesty, or other attributes mentioned in the reading.)
- Do you think you would have liked Abigail Smith (later Adams) as a teenager? Why or why not?
Things to Review
- Review your child's answers to the reading questions.
- Review your child's response to Activity 1.
- Review your child's letter from Activity 2 and confirm that he has used each vocabulary term accurately.
- If your child did the optional Life Application, discuss his answers with him.