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Picture books & easy readers | class #2, fall 2017

During our first class, we started to look at picture books. For our second class on September 20, we are adding easy readers into the mix. Here’s what we are reading and discussing: Three more picture books That New Animal by Emily Jenkins, illustrated by Pierre Pratt School’s First Day of School by Adam Rex, […]

Picture books | class #1, fall 2017

For our first class on September 6, we will be reading two picture books and three articles. Where the Wild Things Are is a classic in the US now, but when it was first published in 1963, it was controversial. If you knew this book as a child, what did you notice this time that […]

Time to go back to school

Labor Day weekend is about to start and so is school. Here in Boston, today is moving-in-day for most of the colleges — and the Horn Book office sits right in the middle of five: Simmons, MassArt, Wentworth, Emmanuel, and Wheelock. The Horn Book editors once again put together a great list of Back to […]

Reading Is LIT: How a Classroom Project Can Impact an Entire Community

As a school librarian, I strongly believe in the importance of books as mirrors and windows for students, especially with so many divisive things happening in our society. Using these sorts of books in the classroom helps to start tough dialogue that’s necessary for educators and students alike. That doesn’t happen all the time with […]

Challenge your students to activism

I was too young in the 1960s to join the activist movement, and the narrow-minded family in which I grew up wouldn’t have tolerated it. But I feel as if I’ve been given a second chance. Today’s political and social atmosphere simply won’t let me be silent to the injustices I see being committed all […]

Unprecedented daring: awe-inspiring picture book biographies

Are you a daredevil at heart? Ready to take on a challenge? Are you passionate about causes and willing to jump in when you see injustice, even in the face of possible danger? If you answered “yes” to any of these, you’ll find a kindred spirit in the subjects of these two books. If you […]

Share your summer reading lists

With schools finished for the season, most have posted summer reading lists. Back in my school days, I remember two kinds of lists: the ones with required reading (classics to be read before grade 9) and the much-preferred lists of books we were encouraged to read just for fun. At the Horn Book, we create […]

Using picture books to teach adolescents about genre

I teach a course every spring about methods in teaching writing, and one topic we learn about is teaching genre. Adolescents need a fairly broad understanding of a variety of genres, both reading and writing them, though often English classrooms focus heavily on reading novels and writing analytical essays. So every year, I make the […]

War and refugees

Given the world we live in, where a picture of a kid who is dazed after a bombing is becoming normal, our children are exposed more and more to the topics of war and refugees from war. Even when we live in safe homes, neighborhoods or countries, we must expose our children to these topics. […]

Harry Potter and the Travel Ban

“Oh, really? You don’t act like an only child!” Growing up and entering adulthood, I have heard this phrase many a time. I take comfort knowing that I am not suffering from the dreaded “only child syndrome” of those who are spoiled or self-involved. I’d be lying, however, if I didn’t admit that as a […]