Childrens Literature awam
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In this subject, students study current theories of literature, with a focus on genres relating to children's literature as a form of social practice. Topics covered include critical analysis, traditional story forms, modernist and postmodern picture books, emerging formats, fantasy and realistic fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
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This podcast was developed as part of an elementary-level Clark County School District Teaching American History Grant. The three-year grant will fund six modules per year with each module focusing on a different era of American history and a different pedagogical theme. This podcast focuses on the the Exploration: From Lewis and Clark to the Gold Rush and Children's Literature. Participants in the grant are third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers in Clark County (the greater Las Vegas area) ...
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Julie Hedlund is back as our guest on New Books Network to talk about her brand new picture book, Song After Song: The Musical Life of Julie Andrews published on Sept 5th by Little Bee Books. It recounts, with love and lyricism, Julie Andrew's childhood leading to her breakthrough as a young teenager. Julie shares the story of how the book came to …
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Emily Owen is the show’s Leicestershire children’s author for the month of September. She is an author who deals frankly with faith, serious health conditions, doubt, family life, and personal growth. Emily has dealt with Neurofibromatosis Type 2 for most of her life, and the surgeries required to save her life have taken away her hearing and some …
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Mónica Mancillas authors books for children of all ages, as well as adult fiction. In our lively interview, Mónica discusses two of her picture books that launched during the summer: How to Speak in Spanglish (Penguin Workshop, 2023) and The Worry Balloon (Roaring Brook Press, 2023). Monica received her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of C…
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Born in Hong Kong and raised in Philadelphia, Jannie Ho is the illustrator of the early reader graphic novel Fry Guys (Andrews McMeel Publishing, launching September 26, 2023) written by Eric Geron, which will launch in just a few days. She is also the author/illustrator of Happy Chinese New Year, A Festive Counting Story, Bear and Chicken, and The…
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Michael Leventhal is the publisher of Green Bean Books, which focuses on Jewish children’s books. He is author of The Chocolate King and co-author of Jews in Britain, After twenty years publishing military history books, he wanted to try something new and work on books that his own young children would enjoy reading. In our interview we discuss Mic…
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In chapter 8 of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, Tom and Joe Harper re-enact the fight between Robin Hood and Guy of Gisborne. They quote directly from a real story which was very popular when Mark Twain was a child: Robin Hood and His Merry Foresters, a book written by Joseph Cundall under the pen name Robert Percy. In this episode, fin…
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Sister Mary Josefa of the Eucharist is a Benedictine nun in Missouri; she and the sisters of her community recently wrote a charming children’s book, Brides of Christ (Sophia Institute Press, 2023), which invites the reader into the rhythms of their contemplative life through the course of the day and cycle of the year. She talks about this life wi…
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Bookshop.org is an online book retailer that donates more than 80% of its profits to independent bookstores. Launched in 2020, Bookshop.org has already raised more than $27,000,000. In this interview, Andy Hunter, founder and CEO discusses his journey to creating one of the most revolutionary new organizations in the book world. Bookshop has found …
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107 years ago this week, Roald Dahl was born. To help celebrate Roald Dahl Day on September 13, we’re playing a game of “True or False” to find out which amazing stories about Roald Dahl are true! What languages did he speak? Was he a WWII Ace fighter pilot? Did he marry a movie star? Which legendary children’s author did he meet as a kid? Let’s fi…
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Sense and Sensibility is the one best suited for teenagers out of all of Jane Austen’s works, and after more than 200 years it still has a lot to say to older teens looking for good advice on how to finish growing up. While of course many things have changed when it comes to the economic independence, dating preferences, and age of marriage for you…
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Savannah Brooks started her agenting career as an intern with the Jennifer De Chiara team in 2017, moving to associate agent in 2018. In 2022, she joined the KT Literary as an agent, where she now works full-time representing all of kid lit and most adult fiction. She’s especially interested in stories that teach her something new, add to a larger …
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Rob Childs, author of over 80 books mainly about kids playing sports, is my Leicestershire Children’s Writer for the month of August. He spent his career teaching schoolkids and running team sports, as well as writing books for children based on his thoughtful understanding of their lives and experiences. Rob Childs spent one year training at The D…
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Award-winning author Laurie Wallmark writes mostly picture book biographies of women in STEM. Her titles include Code Breaker, Spy Hunter: How Elizebeth Friedman Changed the Course of Two World Wars; Ada Byron Lovelace and the Thinking Machine, Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code; and Hedy Lamarr's Double Life. In our discussion, we discuss her br…
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Dick and Jane used to be the kids who taught American kids to read. Now the readers chronicling their adventures are largely considered old fashioned because of the rise of phonics in the 1970’s as well as the emergence of an entire industry based around selling literacy curriculum. Dick and Jane books are old fashioned. But sometimes old things st…
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Lisa M. Bolt Simons has published over 60 children's nonfiction books, with many more in preparation. In our conversation we talk about two of her recent "Curious About" books, but focus on her recent historical fiction graphic novel The Vanished Northwest Passage Arctic Expedition (Capstone, 2022), illustrated by Eugene Smith Both and published by…
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Charles Perrault’s version of Cinderella is the most famous one worldwide, and that’s because it was the first to be widely printed, first in French and then in English. It’s also a story that is strikingly modern, from its use of the pumpkin, a new world plant, to its Enlightenment values celebrating Cinderella’s personal virtues even more highly …
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Today I speak to the wonderful Leslie Kimmelman, as we celebrate her brand new picture book, Ready, Set, Run!: The Amazing New York City Marathon, published by Random House Studio, (and also A Book about Bupkes, published by Kar-Ben). Both books launched on August 1st! Leslie is author of over forty picture books under her own name and many more wr…
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Out of all the larger than life figures in American tall tales, Pecos Bill is the roughest, toughest, meanest, wildest, most untamed, and funniest of them all. Only Pecos Bill has the kind of personality and adventures big enough to have come from Texas. Unlike most tall tales, which arose slowly and were authored by many people, Pecos Bill was pro…
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Co-host Chloë and I went up to Woolaton Hall in Nottingham for our first on-location interview with Dr. Adam S. Smith and Jonathan Emmett, authors of The Tyrannosaur’s Feathers, a wonderful new picture book about how our understanding of the Tyrannosaurus Rex has changed over the years. This book is playfully illustrated by Stieven van der Poorten,…
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“Casey at the Bat” by Ernest Thayer is the most beloved poem in American Literature. It’s mock-heroic epic about . . . a baseball game. It’s very funny and makes a great selection for children to recite. It’s also a great way to introduce students to common poetic devices as well as themes from classic literature that are often referenced by modern…
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Anna Olswanger is an award-winning children's author and highly regarded literary agent, with clients include the New York Times best-selling author Michael Hall and the Newbery Honor Book winner Vince Vawter. Anna's middle grade novel Greenhorn (2012) is based on the true story of a young Holocaust survivor that she heard from Rabbi Rafael Grossma…
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Elizabeth Law has worked in the publishing field her whole life, first as an Editor at Viking Children’s Books and Puffin Books, as Associate Publisher at Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, then later as Publisher at Egmont USA, and more recently as the backlist and special projects editor at Holiday House Books for Young Readers. Elizabet…
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In our interview, Sarah Sassoon celebrates the success of her award-winning children's book, Shoham's Bangle, published by Kar-Ben (2022), and discusses her life journey and career from Australia to South Africa and now as an author and poet in Jerusalem. Mel Rosenberg is a professor emeritus of microbiology (Tel Aviv University, emeritus) who fell…
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This is my second interview with the wonderful Shelli R. Johannes, who is the author of 18 books with more due out in 2024. She is the co-author (with Kimberly Derting) of the popular Cece Loves Science series and Penny (An Engineering Tale of the Fourth Pig). In addition to her tween and teen novels, she is also the author of the Theo Thesaurus se…
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Today I get to interview one of my favorite children's book authors, Ariel Bernstein, and celebrate her new book, You Go First, which was published only two weeks ago by Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books (June 13, 2023). We talk about her rapid rise from anonymity to international success and acclaim starting with her first picture book, I Have …
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In this funny, engaging and candid interview Lili Rosenstreich talks about her career leading up to her current role as founder, publisher, and creative director at Kalaniot Books, an up-and-coming US-based publisher of books for Jewish children. We discuss her wishlist for manuscripts, and her thoughts on the publishing industry. Prior to founding…
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Holly Hatam is illustrator of several dozen children's books, published by Random House, Harper Collins and others. She is also author-illustrator of Unicorns are Real and several other board books. In our lively and candid conversation, we discuss her career, her breakthrough, her thoughts as an illustrator, her illustration process and advice for…
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In our wonderful conversation, Anne Roos Kleiss, a Dutch author-illustrator based in Rotterdam, and I talk about her new book, When a Friend Needs a Friend (which just launched in February, 2023 (Scholastic). Her pen name, which is the name appearing on her children's books is Roozeboos. We talk about how she was discovered at an exhibition featuri…
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This is my second interview with the wonderful children's author Anna Lazowski, this time celebrating the launch of her new picture book Dark Cloud, published last month by Kids Can Press. Anna Lazowski wrote her first picture book for a class assignment in the sixth grade and has been creating stories ever since. Now an award-winning radio produce…
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In our animated discussion, Martin Lemelman and I discuss his latest graphic novel, The Miracle Seed (Eerdmans Young Readers, 2023), which was published only two months ago. It is the thrilling true story of an ancient plant, wonderfully reborn in the modern era through the hard work of two female scientists. It is a Junior Library Guild, as well a…
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Hanoch Piven is an Israeli collage artist whose colorful and witty portraits have appeared over the last 30 years on both sides of the Atlantic: in most major American magazines and newspapers such as Time, Newsweek, Rolling Stone and in many European publications. Piven has written and illustrated eight award-winning books for children, as well as…
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Since Sophia Gholz’s highly successful debut book, The Boy Who Grew a Forest: The True Story of Jadav Payeng, appeared four years ago, she has published with several exceptional picture books for children, notably her two recent books from 2022, Bug on the Rug (Sleeping Bear) and A History of Toilet Paper (and Other Potty Tools) (from Running Press…
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In this interview we celebrate Lee Wardlaw's writing career, over thirty books ranging from board books to YA, with over a million copies sold! We focus on two of her many books, Won Ton and Chopstick: A Cat and Dog Tale Told in Haiku (Henry Holt, 2015) and First Steps (Harperfestival, 1999). We discuss her new award for children's books in which c…
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In our conversation, award-winning author Jennifer Swanson’s talks about her love for communicating science through award-winning children's books (almost fifty, and counting!). We celebrate her most recent book, Footprints Across the Planet (Reycraft, 2022) and get a sneak preview of her upcoming book Space Care. Jennifer shares her path to becomi…
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In this wonderful interview with Jennifer Berne we celebrate the launch of her epic picture book How the Sea Came to Be: (And All the Creatures In It), published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers in 2023, which amazingly covers the four plus billion years from the beginning of the oceans to the present day." Jennifer talks about her love for danc…
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Katey Howes is a highly successful, multiple-award winning picture book author, doing things her way. She writes books in meticulous rhyme. She writes stories with clear messages. In our illuminating interview, we talk not only about her new multi-starred book, Woven of the World (Chronicle, 2023), which sold out in two months, but also about her l…
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In this intriguing and fun interview Stephen Fraser talks about his love for children's books, his careers as editor at HarperCollins Children's Books and as executive agent at the Jennifer de Chiara Literary Agency, and his premise that "Joy should drive the publishing industry." Along the way, he shares great advice to aspiring picture book autho…
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In my conversation with author-illustrator Noa Nimrodi we celebrate the launch of her first Middle Grade book in English, Not So Shy which published just two weeks ago by Kar-Ben. As a young Mom, Noa fell in love with picture books and decided to try and write her own. It was definitely harder than it seemed. After many drafts and countless rejecti…
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Since Chris Haughton begun writing and illustrating children's books about a dozen years ago, he has conquered the heart of millions with his engaging stories and unique, beautiful artwork. His first book, A Bit Lost has been translated into 35 languages and has won awards in 12 countries including the Dutch Picture Book of the Year. Oh No George! …
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African-Americans and women are increasingly visible in professional mathematical institutions, organizations, and literature, expanding our mental models of the mathematics community. Yet early representation also matters: We begin building these models as soon as we begin seeing and doing mathematics, and they can be slow to adapt. In her wonderf…
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Lindsay Bonilla is the author of Polar Bear Island (Union Square, 2018) and I Love You With All of My Hearts (Creative Editions, 2021). In our lively and candid interview, we celebrate the launch of Lindsay's new book, The Note Who Faced the Music (Page Street Kids, 2023). Lindsay talks about her childhood challenges and her penchant for storytelli…
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Susan Johnston Taylor dreamed of writing since the age of nine, when she won a magazine contest. In our interview we celebrate the launch of her picture book, Animals in Surprising Shades: Poems about Earth’s Colorful Creatures (Gnome Road Publishing, 2023). Her book is composed of poems (each in a different style), each about a colorful animal. As…
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In our interview, Melissa Edwards provides an insightful look at children's publishing from the viewpoint of a successful agent who left her legal career in order to pursue her passion for children's books. Melissa Edwards joined Stonesong as a literary agent in August 2016. Previously, she was a literary agent at the Aaron Priest Literary Agency, …
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In this interview with third time author Cathy Stefanec Ogren, we celebrate the launch of her new picture book, Pew! The Stinky and Legen-Dairy Gift from Colonel Thomas S. Meacham (Sleeping Bear Press, 2023). Cathy talks about how her love for writing plays as a child led her down the path of becoming an educator and teacher. PEW is the unlikely ta…
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Joni Sussman talks about her love for children's books and for everything Jewish and how she found her life's mission combining these passions as publisher of Kar-Ben, (part of Lerner Publishing Group), which is dedicated to creating great children's books related to Judaism for Jewish and non-Jewish children in North America and beyond. Now publis…
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Ned Bustard is the author of a new children’s book, Saint Patrick the Forgiver: The History and Legends of Ireland's Bishop (InterVarsity, 2023). We talked about the book, the life of St. Patrick, and the conversion of Ireland. The day after the interview, during his Ash Wednesday homily, Pope Francis said, “the Gospel is not an idea, the Gospel is…
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Last year I interviewed the amazing author Kirsten Larson on her picture books Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane, illus. Tracy Subisak (Calkins Creek, 2020) and True Wonder: The Comic Book Hero Who Changed Everything, illus Katy Wu (Clarion, 2021). Today, we talked about her new picture book, just out, entitled, The Fire of th…
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Emma Bland Smith is the award-winning author of Journey: Based on the True Story of OR7, the Most Famous Wolf in the West, as well as many other fiction and nonfiction books for children. In our interview we talk about her life and writing career and celebrate her recent book, Mr. McCloskey's Marvelous Mallards: The Making of Make Way for Ducklings…
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James McGowan is literary agent at Bookends, where he represents many award-winning authors and illustrators. He focuses on illustrated projects for young readers (board books, picture books, chapter books, and middle grade) as well as adult nonfiction and mystery/suspense novels. In addition to being an agent, James is a children’s author. His deb…
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Racism is resilient, duplicitous, and endlessly adaptable, so it is no surprise that America is again in a period of civil rights activism. A significant reason racism endures is because it is structural: it's embedded in culture and in institutions. One of the places that racism hides-and thus perhaps the best place to oppose it-is books for young…
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