Category Archives for Topics
How kids appreciate moron jokes, stupid folks, and playing the dummy
“Robinson Crusoe” was published on 25 April 1719… Island stories provide dreamy locales to rehearse issues of control and chaos (from Parents’ Choice)
“Then comes the time for the young to discover the pleasures of digging in the dirt…” (from Parents’ Choice)
In Storyland every day is, more or less, Mother’s Day . . .
Irish storytelling embraces folkloric materials and the matter-of-fact inclusion of fairies
We preferred chocolate “kisses” to the other kind.
For the very young, the whole world is alive–from talking teddy bears to the North Wind (from Parents’ Choice)
“In a world of alpha dogs (bullies at skating rinks, high school girls making slighting comments) we became the smart alecks, the sidekicks, the class clowns” (from the New York Times Book Review”)
“For a person of unblinking honesty, the holiday season (as wonderful as it is) offers plenty of things to hate” (from Parents’ Choice)
” Youngsters interested in bugs, computers, math and Rubik’s cubes should be introduced to origami.” (from Parents’ Choice)
Nowadays, I am sorry to say, monsters aren’t what they used to be (from the Los Angeles Times)
The theatrical gorgeousness of being a pirate!
It may be hard to conceive of making this claim about a young adult book, but I believe “Octavian Nothing” will someday be recognized as a novel of the first rank (from the New York Times Book Review)
Multi-generational sharing, my favorite haiku is by Basho: “Come, children, / Let’s run outside— / Hailstones falling!” (from Parents’ Choice)
Mamas, Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys and Cowgirls
Which politician is a bully & a narcissist, ignorant & narrow-minded, power-hungry & hardhearted? (from the New York Times Book Review)
Whatever Happened to Reading For Fun? In a 2004 study “Reading at Risk,” the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) noted an alarming Adownwards trend in book consumption by Americans@ and concluded, AOur worst fears about American reading have been confirmed.@ … Continue reading
Pollyanna is not all bubbleheaded gladness. She is instead one of the most cunning tricksters to appear in American children’s books since Tom Sawyer persuaded his friends to whitewash the fence.
Though it might at first seem an unlikely assertion, sex plays a significant role in Children’s Literature. One of the cornerstones of our very definition of childhood–evident, for example, in our system of movie ratings–is the taboo that surrounds knowledge … Continue reading
The book that “everyone seems to know but few have actually read,” Mark Twain’s “The Prince and the Pauper,” has continued to fascinate me. I wrote about it at length in “Audacious Kids: The Classic American Children’s Story” and linked it … Continue reading
Two Latino/a Books About the Immigrant Experience Ours is, largely, an immigrant nation: its citizens having ultimately come from Germany, Ireland, Italy, and Vietnam; from Polish shtetls, Scandinavian farms, Khymer communities, and countless other places. In that regard, it is … Continue reading
If I can speak on behalf of others, the events of September 11, 2001, have increased Americans’ sense of vulnerability. In the words of a song by Sting now associated with these events, we have come to learn “How fragile … Continue reading
“the book is a terrific, bravura performance”–New York Times Book Review
Danielle van Dam. Samantha Runnion. Nicole Timmons. Jahi Turner. Alexis Patterson. Jennifer Short. Elizabeth Smart. The list seems endless. In 2002, child-snatching seems a national epidemic taking on the biblical proportions of Herod’s slaughter of the innocents.
Should youngsters be kept from digital media or should every toddler be given an iPad? The backlash against eStories by parents who love snuggling up with books & going to the library. But what’s the difference from other gadgets–the View Master, the toy theater, the board game? Continue reading
“In Kidsworld, every tenth animal seems to be a bear.”