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Speaking Truth, Beautifully, to Shattered Young People with Poetry #JACBA Newsletter
Newsletter / April 29, 2018

Special Announcement April 30th: Video announcement and press release made public Watch this space for a special announcement regarding the announcement of this year’s Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Winners and Honorees! Speaking Truth, Beautifully, to Shattered Young People Naomi Shihab Nye reminds our “obsessively tuned in” culture of the magic, power and necessity of “quiet inspiration.” She reminds us that the more “connected” we’ve become, the more disconnected we actually are: “With so much vying for our attention,” she asks, “how do we listen better?” Read More Habibi by Naomi Shihab Nye 1998 Awardee Sitti’s Secrets by Naomi Shihab Nye, illustrated by Nancy Carpenter 1995 Awardee April 2018 Horn Book Herald: Spring News: Five questions for Margarita Engle Most of the poetry written for young readers is straightforward and easy to understand, but it’s meant to be experienced, not dissected. Instead of asking yourself, “What did the poet mean?” ask, “How does this poem make me feel?” Read More Silver People: Voices from the Panama Canal by Margarita Engle 2015 Awardee The Surrender Tree: Poems of Cuba’s Struggle for Freedom by Margarita Engle 2009 Awardee Q & A with Jewell Parker Rhodes In her latest novel for middle-grade readers,…

Jonah Winter Discusses the Difficulties – and Necessities – of Introducing Picture Book Readers To Tough Topics #JACBA Newsletter
Newsletter / April 23, 2018

Special Announcement April 30th: Video announcement and press release made public Watch this space for a special announcement regarding the announcement of this year’s Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Winners and Honorees! Books and Authors Acclaimed author Jonah Winter discusses the difficulties-and necessities-of introducing picture-book readers to tough topics. Read More Lillian’s Right to Vote: A Celebration of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by Jonah Winter 2016 Awardee ‘Just Like Me!’ is the subscription box every child of color deserves The “Just Like Me!” box caters to children from the ages of 2 to 11. Each month the box features two to three books from authors like Faith Ringgold, the author of “Tar Beach;” Maria Willis, an Atlanta native and the author of “The Secret Keeper;” and Ty Allan Jackson, the author of “Danny Dollar Millionaire,” a book that teaches children early on about money and how to manage their finances. For $28 per month, parents can skip the hassle of searching through bookstores and instead have books with African American characters delivered straight to their doorstep. As the child’s reading level advances, so do the book selections. Read More Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith…

Faith Ringgold’s Art Frees Absent and Buried Voices #JACBA Newsletter
Newsletter / March 25, 2018

Special Announcement April 30th: Video announcement and press release made public Watch this space for a special announcement regarding the announcement of this year’s Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Winners and Honorees! Faith Ringgold Faith Ringgold’s famous ‘story quilts’ come to the Crocker Artist, activist and author Faith Ringgold works in many media – painting, drawing, prints, sculpture, masks and Tankas (painted fabrics inspired by Tibetan textiles) – but she is best known for her vibrant “story quilts” that deal with family life, jazz music, relationships, race and slavery in America. Read More POWER IN THE PAINTING: FAITH RINGGOLD AND HER STORY QUILTS Through this didactic retelling of history, Faith Ringgold uses her quilts to reframe the past, freeing absent and buried voices while offering new and stronger voices to future generations. Read More Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky by Faith Ringgold 1993 Awardee Five questions for Winifred Conkling Like it or not, the women’s movement was divided by racism in the nineteenth century. The issue needs to be openly discussed because it happened. It’s also important that young readers learn to appreciate their heroines as flawed and complex human beings. Read More Sylvia & Aki by Winifred…

Addams Author Eloise Greenfied is 2018 Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award #JACBA Newsletter 23Feb2018
Newsletter / February 25, 2018

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards Eloise Greenfield is the recipient of the 2018 Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. “Eloise Greenfield is a trailblazer whose extraordinary books of poetry and prose have influenced many and continue to resonate with children today. Her rich body of work inspires and enriches readers,” said Award Committee Chair Deborah D. Taylor. Read More Paul Robeson by Eloise Greenfield 1976 Awardee UC San Diego exhibition features work by 7 leading international women The seven artists – Eleanor Antin, Barbara Kruger, Faith Ringgold, Martha Rosler, Miriam … Substantiate Our Horror” (1985), Faith Ringgold’s hand-stenciled quilt “Seven Passages to a Flight”… Presented together for the first time, seven internationally recognized artists are featured in the UC San Diego exhibition “Stories That We Tell: Art and Identity,” celebrating those who paved the way for greater inclusion by inventing new means to address issues of race and gender. The seven artists – Eleanor Antin, Barbara Kruger, Faith Ringgold, Martha Rosler, Miriam Schapiro, Lorna Simpson and Carrie Mae Weems – have all been honored with major exhibitions at leading museums, recognized with prestigious awards and are all representative of the university’s Department of Visual Arts. Read More…

Jacqueline Woodson, newly named 2018 Wilder Winner, Calls for the End of the Label “Struggling Reader” #JACBA Newsletter 16Feb2018
Newsletter / February 18, 2018

Stop Using the Label ‘Struggling Reader,’ Author Jacqueline Woodson Advises Woodson: Any kind of qualifier can be harmful because who we are is not static. Our abilities are constantly changing. What does it mean to be a struggling reader? I know if I was raised in this day and age, I would have been labeled a struggling reader. But what I know now is I was actually reading like a writer. I was reading slowly and deliberately and deconstructing language, not in the sense of looking up words in the dictionary, but understanding from context. I was constantly being compared to my sister who excelled, and it made me feel insecure. What gets translated is ‘you are not as good,’ and that gets translated into our whole bodies. That’s where the danger lies. Read More Each Kindness written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis 2013 Awardee From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun by Jacqueline Woodson 1996 Awardee I Hadn’t Meant to Tell You This by Jacqueline Woodson 1995 Awardee ALA Awards: Jacqueline Woodson wins 2018 Wilder Award Jacqueline Woodson is the winner of the 2018 Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honoring an author or illustrator, published in the United States,…

Black History Celebrated Through Biographies and Much More #JACBA Newsletter 9Feb2018
Newsletter / February 11, 2018

Children’s Books About Black History, Heavy on Biographies Among that genre’s newest arrivals are names familiar to adults, as in THE UNITED STATES V. JACKIE ROBINSON (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, ages 4 to 8), written by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen. This picture book is more interested in young Robinson’s less-known act of resistance during his Army days than in his later, trailblazing career as a baseball player. It’s nice to have an athlete celebrated for personal integrity over physical prowess, and R. Gregory Christie’s pictures bolster this, evoking a Robinson who is strong and sure, but also smiling, warm, and ultimately, triumphant. Sandra Neil Wallace’s BETWEEN THE LINES: How Ernie Barnes Went From the Football Field to the Art Gallery (Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman, ages 4 to 8), illustrated by Bryan Collier, is a beautiful testament to a quintessentially American life. Wallace and Collier celebrate both Barnes’s success on the gridiron and his subsequent reinvention as an artist. As in “The United States v. Jackie Robinson,” athleticism is a secondary concern; early on, we see the young Barnes in a museum, wondering where the black painters are, and the story ends with contemporary young museumgoers being shown Barnes’s art. This choice makes the…

In Washington DC: disrupting the notion of what public education and what black boys can do and be #JACBA Newsletter 2Feb2018
Newsletter / February 4, 2018

These kids started a book club for minority boys. It’s the most popular club in school. The club dates back to December, when a fifth-grader complained one morning that his lackluster results on a citywide English exam didn’t reflect his true reading abilities. The principal, Mary Ann Stinson, placed a book she had lying around – “Bad Boy: A Memoir,” by Walter Dean Myers – in his hands and told him to start reading. The boys quickly became engrossed in the 2001 book about Myers’s childhood in New York’s Harlem. The club’s sponsor and the boys meet once or twice a week at 8:15 a.m. – a half-hour before the first bell rings – and use the book to launch into conversations about their own experiences with race, identity and adolescence. “It’s a blessing to be in this predicament, to have kids who are becoming ravenous readers,” Redmond said. “We’re disrupting the notion of what public education can be and what little black boys can do and be.” Read More Now Is Your Time! The African-American Struggle for Freedom by Walter Dean Myers 1992 Awardee Patrol: An American Soldier in Vietnam by Walter Dean Myers 2003 Awardee ‘Monster’ Review: Powerful…

“Because of them: we are,” Jacqueline Woodson National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature #JACBA Newsletter 26Jan2018
Newsletter / January 28, 2018

“What’s Your Equation?”: Jacqueline Woodson Inaugurated as Sixth National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Through her platform, “READING = HOPE x CHANGE (What’s Your Equation?),” Woodson aims “to begin a conversation our country is hungry, but oftentimes afraid, to have.” After expressing gratitude to her editors and publishers, Woodson called on the audience to join her in thanking and remembering writers and activists who influenced and inspired them. “In the African-American tradition, there is the calling of names, where we call our ancestors back into the room; where we acknowledge that because of them, we are.” As the room filled with the quiet calling of names, from Virginia Hamilton to Walter Dean Myers, Woodson’s final words seemed to echo: “Because of them, we are.” Read More MLK Week 2017 to Focus on Environmental Racism The World of Children’s Literature is sponsoring an event featuring Jacqueline Woodson, an award-winning young adult and children’s author and the 2014 National Book Award Winner for her memoir “Brown Girl Dreaming,” which also won the NAACP Image Award. Woodson will be speaking in the Gould Auditorium at the J. Willard Marriott Library on Jan. 23. Read More Each Kindness written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by…

Naomi Shihab Nye’s Poetry Speaks of Caring and Kindness #JACBA Newsletter 19Jan2018
Newsletter / January 20, 2018

Deep Listening Lessons from the psychology of the spiritual imagination Poet Nye recounted how her world-renowned poem “Kindness” came to her as a kind of voice that she heard from deep within herself. On her honeymoon, her and her husband’s luggage was stolen. As her husband traveled to the next town to get new travel documents, she sat in the town’s square watching people as they passed. Suddenly, the poem came to her as if “floating across the square” for her to transcribe. Read More Replace despair with volunteerism in 2018: Rabbi Robert Nosanchuk (Opinion) Ms. Nye is a writer and a Palestinian-Arab American. I am a Jew, a Zionist, and a rabbi. We differ sharply in culture, politics and identity. But we share an aspiration to secure wholeness and peace. Read More Habibi by Naomi Shihab Nye 1998 Awardee Sitti’s Secrets by Naomi Shihab Nye, illustrated by Nancy Carpenter 1995 Awardee Drumpf Reopens an Old Wound for Haitians by Edwidge Danticat President Drumpf’s alleged remarks have taken many of us back to a time when such attitudes were commonplace. They are also particularly disturbing in the context of his larger anti-immigrant program. As Haitian-community advocates are trying to rally…

Feminist Children’s Books & Explorations of Gender Stereotypes #JACBA Newsletter 24Nov2017
Newsletter / November 24, 2017

Book Highlight: part 3 This third installment of our multi-part series on the 2017 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Ceremony features an introduction given by Book Award Committee Member Jenice Mateo-Toledo for We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler, written by Russell Freedman, published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, named an Honor Book in the Books for Older Children category. Introduction by Jenice Mateo-Toledo Russell Freedman writes: The year was 1942 and World War II was in its third year, leaflets began to appear mysteriously in mailboxes all over Nazi Germany…. A person could not be too careful. Anyone caught with a seditious leaflet was marked as an enemy of the state and could land in a concentration camp, or worse… Neatly typed documents headed [with]… “Leaflets of the White Rose…” assailed the Nazi dictatorship as evil, denounced Adolf Hitler as a liar and blasphemer, and called on the German people to rise up and overthrow the Nazi regime.“ [but]… Who was the White Rose?… Russell Freedman expertly utilizes eloquent prose, first hand accounts, and carefully curated black and white images to transport the reader to…