First Girl Scout: The Life of Juliette Gordon Low

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Overview

Just in time for the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts in 2012, a lavishly illustrated account of the fascinating life of the woman who started it all.

Juliette (Daisy) Gordon Low was a remarkable woman with ideas that were ahead of her time. She witnessed important eras in U.S. history, from the Civil War and Reconstruction to westward expansion to post?World War I. And she made history by founding the first national organization to bring girls from all backgrounds into the...

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First Girl Scout: The Life of Juliette Gordon Low

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Overview

Just in time for the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts in 2012, a lavishly illustrated account of the fascinating life of the woman who started it all.

Juliette (Daisy) Gordon Low was a remarkable woman with ideas that were ahead of her time. She witnessed important eras in U.S. history, from the Civil War and Reconstruction to westward expansion to post–World War I. And she made history by founding the first national organization to bring girls from all backgrounds into the out-of-doors. Daisy created controversy by encouraging them to prepare not only for traditional homemaking but also for roles as professional women—in the arts, sciences, and business—and for active citizenship outside the home. Her group also welcomed girls with disabilities at a time when they were usually excluded. Includes author’s note, source notes, bibliography, timeline, places to visit, the Girl Scout Promise and Law, and musical notation for the favorite scout song “Make New Friends.”

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In a biography as engaging as it is comprehensive, Wadsworth (Camping with the President) documents the life of Juliette Gordon Low, who founded the Girl Scouts in 1912. Headstrong, artistic, and boundlessly energetic, Georgia native Low spent many years living in Britain, where her involvement in the Girl Guides organization sparked the idea of launching a similar group in the U.S. Neatly framed photographs and other period documents related to Low are smoothly incorporated into the book’s overall clean design, appearing against pale green pages sometimes printed with a fabric texture that nods toward the Scouts’ uniforms. The narrative moves briskly, despite the copious details Wadsworth includes (Low’s style of entertaining, numerous trips to visit family, marital woes, and the minutiae of starting and running the Girl Scouts). The author skillfully sets Low’s life story against historical backdrops: during the Civil War, Low’s father joined the Confederate army while her Chicago-bred mother’s brothers fought for the Union. Numerous quotations from Low’s correspondence and glimpses of her artwork lend further dimension to this well-rounded portrait. Ages 9–12. Agent: Lynn Bennett, Transatlantic Literary Agency. (Feb.)
From the Publisher
"Wadsworth captures Low’s stubborn but charismatic spirit by blending facts and humorous sketches in this winning biography of a woman whose visions and ideas have helped shape the lives of girls around the world."—Horn Book

"Unvarnished prose, plentiful images and vivid anecdotes set in historical perspective make this chronological account lively and accessible for middle-grade readers."—Kirkus Reviews

"The attractive book design features chapter headings that look like Girl Scout badges, and most spreads include period photos or reproductions of primary-source documents. Exemplary nonfiction."—School Library Journal

"In time for the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) comes this engaging biography about the woman who founded the organization."—Booklist

"2012 will mark the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts of the USA, and a fresh, comprehensive biography of founder Juliette Gordon Low is most welcome."—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Children's Literature - Elizabeth D. Schafer
Friendship and compassion motivated Juliette "Daisy" Gordon Low throughout her life. This chronological biography emphasizes how Low empowered girls to become responsible citizens, experience nature, acquire practical skills such as first aid, and gain self-confidence. During Low's lifetime, the inclusive Girl Scouts promoted female educational and career opportunities and World War I patriotic work, including selling war bonds and planting victory gardens. This book presents the same basic biographical information, anecdotes, and quotations chronicling Low's childhood, family, schooling, health issues, marriage, and Girl Scouts leadership which can be found in previously published children's biographies of Low. Many illustrations have also appeared in prior biographies. Contents unique to this book include details regarding twenty-first century recognition of Low's achievements. Statements generalizing the antebellum South as being rural are misleading, ignoring that region's demographic diversity. 1860 U.S. census records ranked several southern cities, including Low's hometown Savannah, among the United States largest urban communities. This book does not address such contradictions as Low's affinity for nurturing domestic animals and her enthusiasm for hunting wildlife. The timeline identifies milestones in Low's life placed in context with significant events but does not elaborate why some items are included such as the Titanic disaster impacting Low because her friend Arthur Ryerson was killed. Contains bibliography, endnotes, song lyrics, and author's comments. Citations reveal this text relies substantially on Gladys Denny Shultz and Daisy Gordon Lawrence's 1958 biography of Low and does not incorporate insights from recent historical scholarship regarding southern females, the Progressive Era, and expatriates, all potential paper topics. Supplement with Betty Christiansen's Girl Scouts: A Celebration of 100 Trailblazing Years (2012). Reviewer: Elizabeth D. Schafer
School Library Journal
Gr 5–7—This well-documented biography introduces readers to the founder of the Girl Scouts. The first half of the book covers Low's childhood in Georgia (her father was an officer in the Confederate army) and her troubled marriage to a wealthy and well-connected Englishman, William Mackay Low. After her husband's death, Low longed for something to occupy her time, and she found it in 1911, when she met Sir Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the Boy Scouts. First she helped his sister run the newly founded Girl Guides in Great Britain; she then brought the concept home to the U.S., where the name was eventually changed to Girl Scouts. Low's personality really comes to life through the details in the narrative. Wadsworth shows readers that this remarkable woman was a skilled leader and hostess in spite of having suffered severe hearing loss that made conversation difficult. Although her friends and family sometimes noted that she was disorganized and a poor manager of money, they knew that she could "stir up their daily lives in delightful, unpredictable and sometimes exasperating ways." The attractive book design features chapter headings that look like Girl Scout badges, and most spreads include period photos or reproductions of primary-source documents. Exemplary nonfiction.—Jackie Partch, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Kirkus Reviews
Even readers without Girl Scout credentials can appreciate this competent, photo-laden biography of fearless, feisty founder, Juliette Gordon Low. Using letters, diaries, news articles and other memorabilia, Wadsworth (Camping with the President, 2009, etc.) creates a candid portrait. Despite Low's hearing loss and lack of skill at spelling, driving, balancing her checkbook and being on time, her visionary, charismatic and tenacious leadership clearly fueled the rapid growth of the Girl Scouts in the United States. Low's memories of her idyllic childhood summers outdoors, the emotional impact of her failed marriage and her impressive social access all converged to one end: her missionary zeal for bringing an even more ground-breaking, skill-building and career-oriented version of the British Girl Guides movement to America. On the eve of the 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts, Wadsworth can be forgiven the mild promotional element of the final chapter. Once a Girl Scout herself, the author reveals that Low was even buried in her Girl Scout uniform, with a telegram from a dear friend in the pocket that read: "You are not only the first Girl Scout but the best Girl Scout of them all." Readers will be hard-pressed to disagree. Unvarnished prose, plentiful images and vivid anecdotes set in historical perspective make this chronological account lively and accessible for middle-grade readers. (author's note, chronology, source notes, bibliography, words and music) (Biography. 9-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547243948
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 2/6/2012
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 474,609
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Ginger Wadsworth is the author of many nonfiction titles for young readers, including, for Clarion, Words West: Voices of Young Pioneers, which was named a nonfiction Honor Book by VOYA and received the Western Writers of America Spur Award. She lives in Orinda, California. You can learn more about her at: www.gingerwadsworth.com

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

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(6)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2012

    BEST BOOK OF JULIETTE

    THIS BOOK IS WONDERFUL FOR ALL GIRL SCOUTS AND EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM WILL JUST ADORE THIS BOOK ITS SO FANTASTIC!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2013

    Love it

    I'm in the junir girl scouts where I live, Brentwood. It is a lot of fun facts about the girl who created the girl scouts.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2012

    the NOOK copy is full of typos

    I understand a new edition of the NOOK book will be available and my current one will be replaced. The information in the book is great--references to the Roy Scouts, Gin! Scouts, and every fl and fi is repeated so it says flflowers, fifirst, offificial--so it is very disconcerting to read. I understand the hard copy is great--I will be glad when I get my copy. I gave it four stars because I couldn't let it pass that the digital edition is so bad.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2012

    I love it!!!!!!

    I loce it so much I could read every DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2014

    Awesome

    Im a codett and i have not read this book but i like being in girl scouts im going to paris with troop 982 nc

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2013

    Omg

    I'm a girl scout. My troup number is 2440

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2012

    Erfewjrjthrrburjebe

    I am in it

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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