“Who Was Walt Disney” for Preteens – Review

Genevieve P. (NDW#100) (16 Posts)

Genevieve is an Orlando based writer with a love for her adopted city. Growing up in Canada, she would dream about her next Disney adventure. After marrying a fellow Disney Geek, they picked up their life and moved to Orlando. When she isn't found roaming the parks, she is sitting at her desk writing about them. Disney consumes her life, and she wouldn't want it any other way. Always on a quest for her next Dole Whip with her handsome husband Ryan.


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When I was a child, I loved all things Disney. I dreamed of faraway castles, beautiful dresses, and flying elephants. These things were very real to me. They felt like home. When I entered into my teens, I lost interest. I was ” too grown up ” for all those stories. It was only as an actual grown up I fell in love again.

Small children believe because their mind is an endless space of possibility. They don’t live in a world of “seeing is believing.”

What happens when they get a little older, and you want to keep them interested in the world of Disney? The answer is you introduce them to the man himself: Walt Disney.

Teaching preteens, ages 9-12, about Walt Disney can help them realize there is an entire new world for them to discover in the parks. They will learn why their favorite movies, rides and shows are the way they are. They will understand that one person changed the world because he believed in something. Handing your teen a copy of ” Who was Walt Disney?” by Whitney Stewart, will expand their Disney universe. It’s a great introduction to the man we all love.

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This small and very inexpensive book ( $4.99 USD ) is the perfect tool for getting your preteen interested in Walt Disney. It covers his entire life in a simple and extremely easy way to understand. It could even help some adults catch up on their Disney history.

The book clearly links event in Walt Disney’s life to movies and attractions in the parks. For example, the next time your pre-teen rides a park railroad, they will know it’s because of Walt’s love of trains. It will add a dimension to your trip you never had before. It’s a great way to encourage teens to participate in things they might feel “too cool” to participate in.

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The book also cleverly includes lessons on the Great Depression, Pearl Harbor, and the World Wars. Your child will have a history lesson without even knowing it.

It’s also a great dialogue starter. Parents can ask which parts their child was most interested in, and choose experiences accordingly. Was your child really interested in Walt’s animation studio? Then why not take a class with them? If they thought the section on the wars were more captivating, then take the time to explain where your family was during that period. It’s a perfect conversation starter with an age group who can be reluctant to share.

If you take steps to evolve their Disney material, their love for Disney will grow along with them. It may be a small book, but it’s filled with big information. Wasn’t it all started with a mouse after all ?

About the author: Genevieve can be found on twitter @gentweeting and/or her website www.genpell.com .