Children’s Literature Resource Guide

Children’s Literature Resource Guide

A comprehensive guide for parents, teachers, and kids

Introduction

Through reading literature, kids can explore new worlds, contemplate new ideas and develop empathy by seeing the world through the eyes of others. Reading sparks the imagination and helps kids gain cultural knowledge, emotional intelligence and social development. And because reading is so important, we created this Guide to Children’s Literature Resources. Inside, you’ll find 40 individual resources for kids, teachers and parents, including websites that offer texts to read online and literature-themed games; resources for teaching literature to kids; and resources that help guide parents as they work to foster a love of reading in their children.

General Children’s Literature Resources

Whether you’re seeking information on a particular children’s author or you need a link to a site that has storytelling videos based on children’s literature, these resources are for you.

Children’s Literature Author/Illustrator Directory

Find links to tons of children’s literature authors and illustrators. The directory’s convenient A to Z format offers easy searching.

Getting Kids Reading

Parents, you’re sure to want to bookmark this site. Discover plenty of games, books, crafts and creative ideas to promote a love of reading in children.

We Give Books

This website offers children the opportunity to give the gift of a new book to a specific nonprofit charity each time they read a Penguin or DK children’s book online via this site.

International Children’s Digital Library

A treasure trove of children’s high-quality digital books from all over the world. The site offers books for children, ages 3-13. Access is free is easy. You don’t even have to register to read!

Story Place

Many of the same things you can do during an in-person visit to the library, you can do virtually on Story Place. Favorite stories and activities are presented in mobile and desktop formats.

Zinger Tales

Enjoy choosing from a collection of stories told by awesome storytellers that will keep children entertained. Stories are in RealPlayer format.

Shakespeare for Kids

This website provides plenty of activities for children and families. Solve puzzles, answer quizzes and learn new words based on Shakespeare, his works and Elizabethan England.

Vandergrift’s Children’s Literature Page

Find information on topics in children’s literature, bibliographies of children’s books in various genres and more on this site created by the late Kay E. Vandergrift.

Caldecott Medal and Honor Books

View the Caldecott Medal winners. Beginning in 1938, the medal has been awarded for distinguished artistry in a children’s picture book by the Association for Library Service to Children.

Children’s Literature Games

Learning should be fun. And online games, like the literature-themed ones listed below, can give students a break from traditional learning.

Literature Games

Children can enjoy playing various online word games based on books such as How to Eat Fried Worms and The Black Stallion.

LAPL Games

The Los Angeles Public Library offers links to five online literature-based games that are free to access and play.

PBS Reading Games

PBS is a leader in kid’s entertaining educational programming with shows such as Word Girl, Elmo and Super Why. Give your child the opportunity to strengthen his reading skills with a variety of reading games, based on PBS show characters, offered on the site.

Story Toolz

Children will delight in the opportunity to play these literature-based games that feature their favorite characters or storylines.

Student Reading Interactives

Choose from 10 exciting reading games that are geared for children in grades K-2. Flash Player is required.

Reading Guides for Children’s Literature

Readers are developed, not born. Browse the links below to find guides published by organizations interested in the promotion of early literacy and best instructional practices to achieve it.

The Joy and Power of Reading

From Scholastic comes this summary of research and expert opinion, which emphasizes the importance of providing frequent access and exposure to books when children are at a young age. In addition, emphasis is placed on offering a variety and choice of materials and the opportunity to have books read aloud to the developing reader.

Literacy Resource Guide for Families and Educators

Developed by the Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement (CIERA), this literacy resource guide helps families and educators discover the vast amount of children’s literacy resources available through the U.S. Department of Education.

Put Reading First

This 64-page guide offers a summary of research by the National Reading Panel based on how to teach children to be successful readers. Suggestions for best instructional practices are made in the areas of phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, comprehension and vocabulary.

Empowering Parents

This guide, from Reading Rockets, offers practical advice and tips for parents on how to raise a child who likes to read.

Children’s Literature Teaching Resources

When you teach children’s literature, you not only help children develop literacy skills, you also foster within them an appreciation of all that literature has to offer. Browse the links below to find ideas, lesson plans and activities that will help you engage your students.

Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Site

Book reviews for children’s books, curriculum implementation ideas and professional topics are what you’ll find at this site created by the late Carol Hurst who was a well-known lecturer, author and language arts consultant.

Teach with Picture Books

Teach with Picture Books is a helpful resource to learn about ideas, activities and games that you can use with picture books to enhance instruction in grades 3 to 8.

Teaching Kids News

Enjoy free, kid-friendly news stories that are perfect to use with students in grades 2 to 8. The authors provide the appropriate vocabulary and context for every news story they write and include critical thinking questions.

Aaron Shepard’s RT Page

Improve the reading fluency of your students in a fun way. Children’s author Aaron Shepard offers free access to an acclaimed series of Reader’s Theater scripts that you can use in your classroom. He also offers tips for making the most of Reader’s Theater with your students.

Seussville

Find links to engaging lesson plans, whimsical printables and fun-filled activities related to various books written by Dr. Seuss.

Read Kiddo, Read

In the “Lesson Plans for Educators” portion of this site, find over 70 links to lesson plans and discussion questions for various children’s books such as James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl and Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel.

Storyline Online

This site is an online video library that features Screen Actors Guild (SAG) members, such as Kevin Costner and Christian Slater, reading children’s books aloud. Lesson plans and activity guides are available to download for each book.

No Water River

Find poetry performance tips, lists of children’s poetic term and forms and a poetry video library that contains over 100 videos of poem presentations and interviews with poets.

The Best Children’s Books.org

Self-sacrifice, service and helping others are traits that all children should have the opportunity to learn. Check out this link for examples of children’s books that offer examples of service within their stories. Also included for each book: grade level recommendations, summaries and a peek inside.

Cooperative Children’s Book Center

Keep updated about the newest and best books published for children via the booklists and webcasts on this site.

Literature Interactives

From Annenberg Learner, these literature interactives can help your students learn the elements of a story. In addition, literature interactives are available for teachers such as how to assess comprehension or annotate text.

Learning School Radio

A collection of audio resources from the BBC that serve to stimulate children’s imaginations and inspire them to love reading.

Children’s Literature Study Resources

In this section, find links to recorded lectures from actual college-level courses based on children’s literature, study guides, book notes and video lessons to help you learn more about this topic.

Read Write Think

Utilize a study guide that explains three reading methods for promoting fluency and comprehension. Methods include Reader’s Theatre, performing poetry and choral reading.

Literature Lessons on Video

Video examples of excellent teaching practices in literature for grades 6-8 are provided at this link to help teachers improve their teaching methods.

Free Book Notes

This is like one-stop shopping for all your study material needs. Find free book notes, study guides, book and chapter summaries and more from this literature study guide search engine that has links to the materials from more than 23 online providers.

History of Children’s Literature

These 29 audio lectures, from David Beagley of La Trobe University, focus on the development of children’s literature from myths and legends to modern stories.

Post-Colonial Literature for Children

These 20 recorded lectures, from David Beagley of La Trobe University, focus on the major themes and strategies employed by children’s authors to represent postcolonial stories.

Children’s Literature Blogs

For the best in children’s book reviews and poetry to helpful tips and tricks to inspire a love of reading in children, take some time to browse the following blogs.

The Well Read Child

This mom’s mission is all about getting kids to read. She features reading tips, learning activities and fiction and non-fiction book reviews and recommendations to help other parents instill a desire to read in their children. Her book reviews are based on books for children, tweens and teens.

Readertotz

This blog is devoted to the review of children’s board books, otherwise known as tough little books that are full of brilliant colors, cute illustrations and tiny words. Discover information about delightful, almost indestructible books that your toddler will love.

Jen Robinson’s Book Page

Jen Robinson may have a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering, but she has always had a love for children’s books and sharing that love with others. Her blog features tons of insightful book reviews for children’s books and thoughtful posts that can inspire people to place a high value on encouraging children to read.

What to Read to Your Kids

This blog created by Melissa LaSalle, the “Book Mommy,” contains her annotated list of highly recommended children’s books.

Poetry for Children

This blog was created and is maintained by Sylvia Vardell, author and professor at Texas Women’s University. It focuses on finding and sharing poetry with young people.