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Happy Children’s Book Week!

May 7, 2011

Since 1919, Children’s Book Week has been celebrated countrywide with author & illustrator appearances, parties, storytelling, and other book-related events in schools, libraries, bookstores, clubs — anywhere where kids and books connect.

Thinking about some of my favorite books growing up, these three come to mind:

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These are all books that my fifth-grade teacher read out loud to our class. Reading out loud to and with children is so important for literacy and for establishing a community of readers and book lovers. Though I was a crazy reader a long time before fifth grade, I’ll always be thankful to Mr. Johnson for the importance he placed on reading and for showing us his love of reading as well.

I’ve come a long way since then, but I’m still reading children’s books! Right now I’m looking at 20th-century retellings of the 15th-century romance, The Weddyng of Syr Gawen and Dame Ragnell. Here are two of the books I’m using at:


Why do we continue to tell this medieval story? What parts of the original do the retellings keep or change, and how do those choices reflect contemporary culture? We shall see…

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