Marketing for Libraries Logo

Course Materials: Course Guide

This course is designed as a "seminar". A seminar focuses on a particular subject of interest and participants are encouraged to learn through sharing and discussion. As such, dialogue, discussion, and debate will play a central role in the seminar. While I'll provide background information to get you started, it's your job to jump into the professional literature along with the youth literature to come up with your own conclusions about the state of literature for youth.

Discussion (LitBit replies and BookBlog comments) play at important part in this course at almost 20 percent of the grade. Be sure you're supporting your arguments with evidence and using nonfiction books for youth in your examples. In other words, your replies and comments should have substance.

While this isn't specifically a research course, the seminar is designed to help familiarize you with the methodology of literature for youth. Hopefully this approach will help you solve practical research problems in your areas of interest.

As you're exploring books, remember that WorldCat is an effective way to locate titles, authors, and publication dates. You can also find related books and sometimes previews.

Use the following guide to complete the requirements for this course.

Course Activities

The class contains seven LitBit activities (70 points), a Reading Blog (20 Points), and a Read & Discuss (10 Points). The guidelines for these assignments are listed below.

LitBit activities (10 points each) provide flexible opportunities for students to explore and apply course content related to collection development and management. Choices allow students with diverse background and professional interests to apply theories to meaningful, practical assignments. The activities contain two components (an activity posting and at least TWO quality reply). These will be posted in the Canvas forum area.

Many of the LibBit activities require that you provide an annotated list of books. Be sure to include the following information for each book:

The Book Blog (20 Points) allows you to read and share books of interest.

The Read & Discuss (10 Point) give you a chance to read and discussion three works of nonfiction.

This course has no final project or exam. Instead, I'd like you to concentrate on interactions with your peers throughout the semester.


Courses Study Materials

Each person approaches the study of collection development and management in a different way depending on his or her personal and professional interests and experiences. Rather than dictating all of the required readings, this course provides flexibility by allowing you to choose areas where you'd like to explore in-depth.

try itWoven into the required online course readings, you'll find required articles indicated with a blue book icon shown on the left. Read them for the general concepts they address. You don't need to read every word of every article. However they are often useful in completing the LitBit assignments so don't skip them!

try itIn some cases, a video will be provided. Rather an a book icon, look for the blue video icon (right).

You'll also find additional resources at the bottom of each course page. It's up to you to decide whether these additional resources will be useful for your understanding. They can be very useful in identifying ideas to share in the LitBit activities. Use the IUPUI Library Citation Linker for quick access to the resource articles.

try itRather than simply reading the materials on each page, be sure to TRY IT! Throughout the course readings, you'll find short activities that will help you apply the ideas you're learning. These activities aren't graded and don't need to be turned in, however they are important for your learning. They're the types of activities we would be doing in a face-to-face class. Instead, it's your job to work your way through these activities independently. Look for the Try It! icon (left) on the left in light green boxes for TRY IT! activities. Many of these activities have been woven into the formal assignments.

Course Guide

You can find the specific course readings for each week in this guide. They are also found in the course calendar along with due dates for readings and activity assignments.


Introduce Yourself (0 Points, required)
Introduce yourself. Are you a fiction or nonfiction leisure reader? When you do hang out in the nonfiction section, what topics draw your attention? If you had endless time to read, name a couple books that would be on your nonfiction "to read" list.

Complete the Introduce Yourself assignment.

Informational Reading

Read Informational Reading.

Read Collection Development.

LitBit 1: Informational Reading and Collection Development (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 1.1 State of the Discipline
What nonfiction books are young people reading?
1) Do you think works of print nonfiction will continue to be popular? Why or why not? Be specific. What does Sutton think?
2) What do you envision as the needs in nonfiction? Hunt would like to see more narrative nonfiction in the form of series like Harry Potter. What do you think would appeal to the youth audience? Provide some examples.
3) What does Celebrating Reading for Enjoyment say about youth reading? Duke explored the real-world needs. What are your questions about the current state of research on informational reading and nonfiction literature for youth?
4) If you hold a position at a library (or have a friend who does) find out what youth are reading based on circulation. If you don't have this access, select another LitBit option.
What areas of the youth nonfiction collection circulate the most and least? Be specific including some book titles as examples. What are the most popular areas and books? What characteristics do the most popular areas and books share? Provide at least ten book examples and try to explain the statistics and the trends. Be sure to cite professional sources from your readings. If you can't get access to this information, choose another option.

Discussion of current state of discipline (1 Point)
Discussion of questions (1 Point)
Discussion of youth nonfiction circulation (2 Points)
At least ten book examples (3 Points)
Professional sources (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 1.2 Nonfiction Genre
What are the different nonfiction genre for youth?
1) Explore the nonfiction collection for youth at your local school or public library. You can also use Google Books Juvenile Nonfiction Preview, "Amazon Look Inside" for a particular book, and publisher websites, however they don't provide the full text. Also, explore my suggested reading list.
2) Define and identify specific examples of each of the four genres (narrative, explanatory, persuasive, and procedural) discussed in the course materials. To review the genres, scroll down the Informational Reading page. These nonfiction works should all come from the same general subject area (i.e., psychology or geometry) or relate to a particular theme such as food preparation, animals, or historic battles. Choose AT LEAST one book in each genre to share with a total of at least seven books. Do a comparison of the approach taken with each book. How would these books be used differently in leisure reading or as part of a youth inquiry? In what situations would you recommend one book genre and not another?
3) Notice the structure of various works of nonfiction for youth in the four genre. Describe elements such as use of a variety of images including photographs, maps, and diagrams. Also look for reader tools including the table of contents, glossary, timeline, index, and other elements. Compare and contrast the structure of each of these four nonfiction genre. Use specific examples (if possible with screen captures, scans or photos) from books in your discussion.
4) Create a list of skills youth need to make effective use of informational books. How could you go about helping youth differentiate these genres and identify the type that best fits a particular need?
5) Cite at least two professional articles that discuss types of nonfiction or teaching youth about book structure.

Define and provide at least seven examples across the four genre (2 Points)
Compare four genre (1 Points)
Discuss structure four genre (2 Points)
List skills for informational reading (2 Points)
Use of professional articles (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 1.3 History of Nonfiction for Youth
What's the history of nonfiction for youth?
1) Think about all the books that came before the current nonfiction craze. Select a particular type of nonfiction (i.e., narrative, explanatory, persuasive, procedural) or a topic of interest (i.e., environmental issue, African American leaders, space, sports) and explore the history of nonfiction works for youth.
2) Use a timeline tool such as Timeglider, Tiki-TokiCapzlesOurStory, or TimeToast. Provide an overview of your area of investigation.
3) Add at least ten annotated books to the timeline including a book cover image and explanation about where each item fits in your area of interest. Be sure to include specific examples from the book that gives a feel for how each book fits into the history of this area.
4) Cite at least three professional articles somewhere in your timeline.

Overview of category history (1 Points)
At least ten annotated books (5 Points)
Use of professional articles (1 Point)
Use of online timeline tool (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 1.4 Readers' Advisory for Nonfiction
What's readers' advisory and how does it apply to nonfiction for youth?
1) How is advisory different for fiction and nonfiction? What questions do you ask to help facilitate youth finding what they want or need? How is narrative nonfiction like and unlike fiction and other types of nonfiction? Provide a couple examples of quality narrative nonfiction for youth.
4) Select five books that represent the "fine, fine line" that Tanya Stone describes in her article. Place them on a continuum or create a set of criteria that you use to separate fact from fiction and narrative from explanatory approaches. Is this an area of concern or are authors and reviewers just being picky? As a teacher or librarian, what are your thoughts on this "fine, fine line"?
5) Do you like to read fact and fiction together or do you prefer them to be kept separate? What about youth? Is a combination of fact and fiction confusing or engaging? How do you know if narrative nonfiction is "really" true? What about books that bridge the narrative and explantory approaches? How can you help youth address these concerns? Use examples from the five books you selected in your discussion.
6) What questions would you ask to determine whether youth are interested in narrative nonfiction or some other information work such as "task-based" or "fact-based"? Be specific.
7) Become a secret shopper. Go to a library where you don't known the librarians. Find out what they might suggest for a child of a particular age. Don't immediately tell them that you're working on a project for class. Instead, observe how they work with an "every day" patron. Do they immediately suggest nonfiction? If not, see what they say if you guide them in that direction. Are they supportive or hesitant? When focusing on nonfiction, what types of questions did they ask? What books did they suggest? How does this connect to your professional approach?

Readers advisory discussion (1 Points)
Four books that reflect the "fine line" (2 Points)
Fact/fiction/bridge discussion (1 Points)
Advisory questions (1 Points)
Secret shopper experience (3 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 1.

Build and share BookBlog. Complete BookBlog Entry 1.


Read Guidelines & Standards.

LitBit 2: Librarians, Guidelines and Standards (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 2.1 Accuracy in Nonfiction for Youth
How important is accuracy in selecting nonfiction for youth?
1) Read Accuracy in Nonfiction by Mark Flowers. Read Nina Linday's article titled Bomb: Nina's Take. Be sure to read the discussion at the bottom of the posting. Also read March Aronson's Histories of War. Where do you stand on the question of accuracy in nonfiction works for youth? What about narrative, explanatory, and books that mix these elements? Is there a specific "line in the sand" regarding accuracy or is this an issue that can be discussed as a continuum of concerns? If it's a continuum, what does the range of acceptable "flexible truths" look like? Are "embellishments" and "reinvention" appropriate in nonfiction works for youth? How important is it that authors cite their sources? At what point would these issues impact whether you would select a book for your library? Provide examples.
2) Create your own selection criteria specifically focused on selecting works of nonfiction for youth.
3) Discuss at least four books of nonfiction for youth. Include annotations. How are author notes, resources, references, and other tools used to explain how information was selected and used? How are primary sources woven into the text and into the sources listed? Use very specific examples from the books to illustrate your thoughts.
4) At least one of your books should be from the biography, history, or science section of my suggested reading list. Or, from the Scientists in the Field series from Smithsonian.

Accuracy in nonfiction discussion (2 Point)
Selection criteria stated (2 Points)
At least four books annotated and discussed (4 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 2.2 Hot Button Books
What are the "hot button issues" in nonfiction for youth?
1) Explore the issue of censorship of nonfiction books for youth. Use ideas from our class Collection Development page or from ALA's Frequently Challenged Books list. Examine two nonfiction books for youth that have been challenged. Share your findings. Include at least two professional resources.
2) Investigate the controversies over the work of popular historian Howard Zinn's A People's History. Go to the Zinn Project to learn more about this ideology. Read Undue Certainty: Where Howard Zinn's A People's History Fall Short by Sam Wineburg and a rebuttal, When Assessing Zinn, Listen to the Voices of Teachers and Students by Robert Cohen. The controversy hit Indiana a few years ago. Read Indiana's Anti-Howard Zinn Witch Hunt. Explore the series A Young People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn and adapted by Rebecca Stefoff. Locate at least two professional reviews of this series. Also examine informal reviews at Amazon and GoodReads. Discuss the pros and cons of this book as a resource in a public or school library.
3) Summarize the controversy. Write your own article citing Wineberg and Cohen as well as Howard Zinn and informal evaluations.
4) Identify two other books that you feel are or could be "hot button" books. Include these in your article. Discuss why you think these topics and specific these books could be at the center of controversy.

Discussion of censorship (1 Point)
Examination of at least 2 challenged works (2 Points)
Use of professional resources (1 Point)
Zinn controversy article (2 Points)
Use of at least 2 hot button books (2 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 2.3 Melding Guidelines and Standards in the Real World
The State of Indiana has spent the past couple years trying to grapple with how to weave the best of the Common Core (CCSS) into their own set of standards. How can librarians help build this bridge?
1) Examine the lists of "example texts" for elementary school (Grades K-12) and middle/high school (Grades 6-12). One of the most hotly debated element of the CCSS are the "example texts." While some view these as "the" list, others consider them only samples of the kinds of texts that could be used. What are the pros and cons of providing a list of examples texts?
2) If you'd never seen this list, what items would you have gathered based on the CCSS for elementary or middle/high school? Provide an annotated list of five works of nonfiction for youth you think would fit the CCSS. Justify your choices.
3) Build a set of texts related to a particular topic. The books should not be ones you selected for step 2. These three annotated books should have a similar reading level. They should also be focused on a set of key ideas. Create a list of these key ideas found across books in the set. Your set should include books from at least three different genre (i.e., narrative, explanatory, persuasive, procedural). You may also want to include items from different areas of the nonfiction collection such as reference, biography, how-tos, along with concept books. Think about how the set might be introduced from more to less familiar genres. Although the focus is on nonfiction, it's fine to include a work of historical fiction, graphic novel, or predictable picture book if it fits well into the set.
4) Brainstorm other topics that would be useful for text sets. Choose three of these topics and discuss the challenges you would face in working with these topics and finding quality books.

Pros and cons of example texts discussion (1 Point)
Annotated list of 3 works (3 Points)
Set of texts (3 Points)
Related topics discussion (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 2.4 The Librarian's Role in Guidelines and Standards
Whether you're interested in a school or public library environment, your job involves more than simply providing books and other materials. How does your collection meeting the formal and informal learning needs of children? What do you need to know about nonfiction reading, state standards, and the school's curriculum? What do you need to know about nonfiction and home schooling? How can you assist high school learners who are taking online courses?
1) What do librarians need to know about nonfiction and informational reading to be prepared to meet the needs of children, parents, teachers, and others?
2) Regardless of whether you work in a school or public library setting, you need a plan for connecting children and young adults with nonfiction and informational reading experiences. Using the information and links on the class page along with other information you locate, create a professional plan for connecting nonfiction books for youth with children, teachers, homeschoolers, and/or parents depending on your area of interest. Your plan should include an introduction to the key issues; excerpts from or references to at least three professional articles; specific areas of nonfiction collections, informational reading best practices, or state standards that emphasize an specific area of informational reading; examples of how the library might collaborate with others; your role in assisting youth through formal or informal instruction; an action plan including a timeline, steps, and/or actions; and at least three examples (i.e., anchor books with activities, reading lists, best practices lists, annotated sets of related texts).

What skills do you need in the area of nonfiction for youth (1 Point)
Comprehensive plan with required elements (4 Points)
At least three examples (3 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 2.

Complete BookBlog Entry 2.


Read Emergent Readers.

Read Reluctant Readers.

LitBit 3: Emergent and Reluctant Readers (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 3.1 Young Children and Nonfiction
What are the informational reading needs of young children?
1) Discuss the pros and cons of using "leveled books" with beginning readers. Explore the Scholastic Bookwizard. This online tool helps librarians, teachers, and parents locate materials by reading level. Provide three annotated examples of interesting books you found. Describe children who would enjoy or benefit from these books.
2) Think about the reading needs of pre-readers to fluent readers. Invent a child or choose a real child. Who is this child? What's their background, interests, and experiences with reading?
3) Identify four sets of three books (12 annotated books total) that meet the needs of this particular maturing child as he or she moves from pre-reader to early emergent reader to emergent reader to fluent reader. How are their needs and interests different? What criteria will you use to select books in each category? Incorporate at least two professional articles into your discussion.

Leveled reading discussion with examples (3 Points)
At least 12 annotated books for specific audience (4 Points)
Discussion of selection and use of professional articles (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 3.2 Nonfiction Read-Aloud
What makes a good nonfiction read-aloud book?
1) Browse the list of read aloud books on the class page as well as the Text Exemplars and Sample Performance Tasks found in the appendix of the CCSS. Select a read-aloud book off the list to read. Identify three other nonfiction books on the same topic. Why do you think this book was identified as a good read-aloud book? Are the ones you selected just as good? Why or why not?
2) What makes a good read-aloud book? What are issues related to selecting read-aloud nonfiction narratives and informational texts? How are they like and unlike works of fiction? Incorporate at least three professional articles into your discussion.
3) Create three booksets for a real-aloud program. Each of the three booksets should contain at least three, annotated books (a total of 9 different annotated books). It's fine to include a combination of narrative nonfiction and informational texts. Include the specific selection criteria you used along with the books selected. Be sure to include key words and concepts associated with the books.

Discussion of CCSS read aloud books (1 Point)
Read-aloud discussion with professional lit (2 Points)
At least 3 annotated book sets discussed (5 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 3.3 Motivation and Engagement in Reading
How can librarians motivate reluctant readers?
1) Browse Adolescents' Engagement in Academic Literacy. University of Maryland. Available online. This report provides a series of outstanding research articles on adolescent engagement with informational text. Select one article to read in-depth, summarize the article, and critique the research approach.
2) Although these articles focus primarily on students as readers, they have important implications for librarians working with children, parents, and teachers in any setting. Reflect on the article. Write about how you will bridge theory and practice. What are the implications of this research for informational book selection and readers advisory for youth? Be specific citing the research. Find a second research article (not in this article collection) that reinforces or extends the ideas presented in this research.
3) Explore websites that provide ideas and lists geared to reluctant or struggling readers. Think about pairing fiction with nonfiction. Check out ALA's Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adults. You can also do a search for reading lists geared specifically for reluctant or struggling readers. Seek out hi-lo lists and suggested topics for motivating youth. Go to the Guys Read! website (currently being updated) developed by author Jon Scieszka. This website is designed to help parents, teachers, and librarians seeking books for reluctant readers, particularly boys. Summarize your exploration.
4) Invent three children of different ages and/or different interests. Write about their background, reading skills, motivations, and interests. Identify 2 nonfiction books that you would recommend for each child (a total of 6 different annotated books). Discuss how these books reflect what you learned in your investigation. You should include an annotation and how you see this item fitting in with the research. For instance, you might focus on relevance and motivation to read or a thematic approach reading.

Article summary and critique (1 Point)
Discussion of implications and additional resource (1 Point)
Book exploration summary (2 Points)
At least 6 annotated books and discussion (4 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 3.4 Procedural Nonfiction for Youth
How can librarians best share procedural nonfiction for youth?
1) The "how-to" books are scattered across the nonfiction collection. How will you make the best use of these wonderful works of procedural nonfiction? Define and give three different annotated examples of procedural nonfiction.
2) Develop a set of categories that will help you organize your thinking about procedural nonfiction for youth and how they might be accessed by youth. Identify and cite at least two professional articles focusing on procedural nonfiction for youth or articles that relate to reading nonfiction.
3) Identify some of the best books in each of your categories or create some clusters of books related to a topic. You should include at least 8 different annotated books.
4) Share strategies for using books as part of a motivational program to promote reading.

Definition and at least 3 examples (2 Points)
Set of categories with professional articles (1 Point)
At least 8 annotated books (4 Points)
Strategies for using books (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 3.

Complete BookBlog Entry 3.


Read Graphic Nonfiction.

Read Literary Nonfiction.

Read Humanities Collections.

LitBit 4: Graphics, Narratives, and the Humanities (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 4.1 Graphics in Nonfiction
What's the role of graphics in youth nonfiction?
1) Researchers have come up with six functions: decoration, representation, organization, interpretation, transformation, and extension and eight categories of graphic types in informational texts including diagrams, flow diagrams, graphs, timelines, maps, tables, images, and simple photographs. Thinking about the studies by Norman and Fingeret, conduct your own study in a specific area of the nonfiction collection. For instance, you might examine books about the American Civil War or space travel. What do you see as the role of graphics in nonfiction for youth? Are they an extra or an integral part of informational reading? Cite at least two professional articles in your discussion.
3) Design your own mini-study. You should include at least 8 annotated books in your study. For instance, you might compare a set of random books from two different areas of the collection. How are the graphics found in these two content areas alike and different? How do they compare to Fingeret's findings? Be very specific. If possible, use a few book images as examples. You can take screen captures from Google or Amazon previews if the books are available.
3) How might this information be useful in collection development or readers' advisory?

Role of graphics discussion (1 Point)
Use of professional articles (1 Point)
Mini-study with at least 8 books (5 Points)
Application of mini-study (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 4.2 Graphic Nonfiction
How do works of graphic nonfiction fit into our understanding of narrative nonfiction?
1) Discuss your thoughts on graphic nonfiction for youth. Read and summarize Flowers, Mark (2013). Thoughts on Alex: My Friend Dahmer. School Library Journal. Available in SLJ. Browse MetaMaus (2011) by Art Spiegelman. This book explores the originals of the award-winning graphic work Maus. The preview gives you the sense of mixing a graphic-novel style with nonfiction. What do you think of this combination? Browse Laika. This is considered a work of nonfiction. How much do you think is fact versus fiction in terms of the visual and text aspects of the book? What about individual episodes and the reactions of the individuals? Does it matter? What are your thoughts on the fine line between fact and fiction? What are some of the specific problems facing the authors of nonfiction graphic narrative?
4) In the past few years, several books related to the Manhattan Project and the first atomic bomb have been written. Go to the Macmillan site and preview Trinity: A Graphic History of the First Atomic Bomb by Jonathan Fetter-Vorm. Compare this work to others related to the same topic. How could this work be used to present a different perspective? How would it fit as part of a cluster of books on this topic?
5) Use a work of graphic nonfiction as your "anchor text" such as Battlelines on the Civil War or Lewis & Clark. Then, select three other related works of nonfiction (not graphic works) that might expand or enhance understanding of the work of graphic nonfiction. Provide annotations for each and describe how each contributes to an understanding or enjoyment of the topic.
6) Identify three other works of graphic nonfiction you think youth would enjoy and why. If possible, include screen captures, scans, or photos of illustrations to assist in your discussion.

Graphic nonfiction discussion (2 Points)
Manhattan Project example (2 Points)
Graphic nonfiction cluster (2 Points)
At least 3 additional graphic nonfiction works (2 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 4.3 Autobiographies and Biographies
What's happening with autobiography and biography for youth?
1) Define autobiography, memoir, and biography. Compare a classic, chronology picture biography such as those by David Adler with alternative approaches to biography such as A River of Words: The Story of William Carlos Williams and Bad News for Outlaws. Is it important that young people explore all perspectives or stick to the legends? Which do you think youth would prefer? Which do you prefer? Why?
2) Discuss the appeal of different types of biographies. Browse The Lincolns: a Scrapbook look at Abraham and Mary. What would appeal to young people first browsing this book? Compare the format of this book to another biography for youth. How is it alike and different? Browse Primates: The Fearless Science of Jane Goodall, Dian Fossey, and Birute Galdikas or Feynman by Jim Ottaviani. What makes these books different from The Lincolns? What are the pros and cons of each approach?
4) Discuss different structural approaches to biography. Discuss differences in visual features. In addition to the books provided, identify three other biographies that have features or approaches you find appealing. They should also provide three different perspectives or at least different pieces of evidence youth could use when studying the individual. Provide annotations for these three books and specific examples from within the books.
5) Biographies are perceived by many youth as boring. How will you change this perception? Describe at least three ways to boost circulation of biographies.

Biography preference discussion (2 Points)
Biography appeal discussion (2 Points)
Biography cluster (3 Points)
Marketing ideas (1 point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 4.4 Nonfiction Collections and the Dewey Debate
What's your perspective on the Dewey Debate?
1) Think about areas of the library collection that get lost because of the way materials are shelved. Browse a preview of The Fairy Ring at Google Books. How is the book like and unlike a work of fiction? Can you identify features that indicate that it's a work of nonfiction? Do you think these types of nonfiction narratives are confusing to youth? Why or why not?
2) Look at the Dewey system and thinking about books that seem out-of-place by today's standards. Pick three examples of books or clusters of books that need to be moved, marketed, displayed or otherwise featured to get them noticed by youth. Provide annotations for example books along with the discussion.
3) Read Kaplan, Tali Balas, Dolloff, Andrea K., Giffard, Sue, Still-Schiff, Jennifer (September 28, 2012). Are Dewey's Days Number?: Libraries Nationwide Are Ditching the Old Classification System, School Library Journal. Available. Is this a radical, unwise move or a sensible, practical approach? You decide. Do some research on more recent discussions about the DDC and alternative approaches to accessing nonfiction works in libraries for children and young adults. Write an article discussing perceived concerns about Dewey Decimal Classification and ways others are handling the issue. Incorporate your specific examples of books that seem out of place and need to get noticed. Cite at least three professional sources. Defend Dewey and discuss ways to work within the system. Or, derail Dewey with what you think is a better approach for the future. Provide specific reasons and examples.

Narrative nonfiction confusion discussion (1 Point)
Dewey "out of place" discussion and examples (2 Points)
Persuasive article with examples (4 Points)
Use of professional articles (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 4.5 The Study of Books for Youth in the Humanities
What's happening with nonfiction in the humanities?
1) Think about Bauml and Field's approach to studying children's literature. What are the pros and cons of their approach? How would you limit or expand the study? How could Bauml and Field's approach be applied to another area of the humanities? What lists would you explore to identify books? What are six books that you would place on the list? Why? Provide annotations for the six books you select.
2) The occult, religion, and human sexuality are just of few of the categories that can make the humanities section ripe for controversy. What are your thoughts on books about religion in school and public libraries? Explore the religion section of a school or public library? What does the 200 section look like? Are all religions represented? How are they represented? What about atheists, agnostics, and those questioning religion? Is their perspective represented? Is this important?
3) Read Rybakova, Katie; Piotrowski, Amy & Harper, Ellie (Spring 2013). Teaching controversial youth adult literature with the common core. Wisconsin English Journal, 1(55), 27-45. Available. Identify controversial area of the collection. Identify three books that you think a child or young adult might find particularly useful. For each title, provide a description and discussion about the potential controversy and why youth need to read them. How will you make these materials accessible to those who want or need them?

Application of Braml and Field's approach (3 Points)
Discussion of religion books (2 Points)
Discussion of another controversial area (3 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 4.

Complete BookBlog Entry 4.


Read History & Geography Collections.

Read STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, Math.

Read Pairings & Clusters.

LitBit 5: Readers, Authors, Pairs, and Clusters (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 5.1 Focus on Reading
How can the reading research guide librarians?
1) Research on reading has been woven across the course materials. Select a research focus such as motivating readers, reading comprehension, or reading historical or scientific texts. Why is it important that librarians are connected to reading research? Summarize the research in your interest area including at least five scholarly articles. Then, connect the reading research to libraries and the role of librarians. It's fine to use the article from class, but try to find at least one article on your own.
2) Apply some aspect of the reading research to a project you could do in your library. Include at least one annotated book cluster (2-5 nonfiction books for youth) in your discussion.


Summarize research and connect to libraries (4 Points)
Library project and book cluster (4 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 5.2 Author Studies
Who writes and illustrates nonfiction for youth?
1) Explore authors and illustrators of nonfiction for youth. Author spotlights have been woven throughout the course materials. It's fine to use one of these individuals or find your own.
2) Conduct two, short author or illustrator studies. Write a short biographical sketch for each person. Create a short annotated list of key works. Build a set of web links to their website, publisher, book trailers, video resources, or other information.
3) Compare the approaches and works of these two people. Describe the types of readers that would be attracted to the works of each author.


Author studies (6 Points)
Author comparison (2 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 5.3 Thematic Clusters
How can thematic clusters be used in your library?
1) Read Clausen-Grace, Nicki (Spring 2007). Jamestown. School Library Journal, 53, 26-27. IUPUI students can view the article online. This article provides examples in each of the seven areas using the topic of Jamestown as a theme.
2) Develop your own project focusing on a topic of your choice and selecting clusters of nonfiction works in each of the seven areas. Include at least 10 annotations of books for youth.


Article incorporating seven areas (3 Points)
At least 10 annotations (5 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 5.4 Pairings
How can pairing be used in your library?
1) Focus on a particular category of pairing such as environmental fiction-nonfiction, historical fiction-nonfiction, or adult-youth. Write about the potential, pros and cons, and possible approaches.
2) Describe at least five annotated pairings (10 total books). Describe who and how you see these pairings used.
3) In addition, create a promotional webpage, flier, booklet, or some other way to share these pairings with potential readers.


Potential of pairings discussion (1 Point)
At least 10 annotated books (6 Points)
Promotional material (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 5.5 Read-Aloud Clusters
How can nonfiction be used in read-aloud activities?
1) Begin by exploring the Biographies "10-Minute Selections" to see how nonfiction read-aloud segments could jumpstart reading. Also, explore examples of historical fiction passages that could be read aloud and connected with nonfiction works related to the Middle Ages. Then, think about nonfiction works that could be paired with either of these experiences. Examine some other Reid-Aloud Alerts for other fiction and nonfiction read-aloud examples and ideas including: Dreams, Memorable Characters, Inquiring Minds, Unusual Creatures and Fantastic Worlds, Sense of Place, Silly Stories, Winners and Losers, Faerie Tales, Classics, Sequels, Primary Grade Chapter Books, and Journey Through America's Past. To view all the examples, you'll need to sign up for a free trial, or find them through the IUPUI Citation Linker. Discuss a couple of Reid's examples that you particularly enjoyed.
2) Select one of Reid's "10-Minute Selections" and create a cluster of nonfiction works that would connect to the passage. You should include at least 4 annotated books.
3) Identify a topic of interest and seek out fiction or nonfiction book passages that would generate questions or interest. Use the Reid article as a model for sharing the book and the "10-Minute Selection". Then, identify at least three nonfiction annotated works that could be paired with this fiction experience. Write it up similar to the way Reid writes his articles.


Reid's Read-aloud discussion (1 Point)
Cluster around Reid's selection (3 Points)
Read-aloud article with annotated works (4 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 5.

Complete BookBlog Entry 5.


Read Series & Reference.

Read Innovative Approaches & Formats.

Read Connecting with Youth.

LitBit 6: Innovative Approaches and Formats (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 6.1 Public Library Youth Program
How can nonfiction for youth be woven into a youth program?
1) Develop a Public Library Youth Program including a budget for the program, schedule of activities, marketing and promotion materials, and list of books incorporated into the program. Your program should focus on a specific nonfiction book for youth and/or a collection of books (i.e., cooking books, LEGO books, craft books).

Public library program plan (5 Points)
Annotated list of resources for youth (3 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 6.2 Adult-Teen Crossovers
What makes a great adult-teen crossover work of nonfiction?
1) Read an adult nonfiction book by one of the following authors:
John M Barry such as The Great Influenza
Jared Diamond such as Guns, Germs, and Steel
Malcolm Gladwell such as Tipping Point
Jon Krakauer such as Into Thin Air
Erik Larson such as The Devil in the White City
Michael Pollen such as The Omnivore's Dilemma
Mary Roach such as Stiff
Amy Stewart such as Wicked Bugs
E.O. Wilson such as Letters to a Young Scientist
If you haven't read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot, I'd highly recommend it.
2) Read a second work of adult nonfiction of your choice. Additional author ideas are on our class page.
For ideas, browse the Adult Books 4 Teens blog at School Library Journal and check out the Popular Adult Books for Teens list at GoodReads. While many of their suggestions are for fiction books, they often post nonfiction works. Booklist publishes its Editor's Choice each year in the categories of Adult Books for Young Adults. For the most recent lists, go to Booklist.
2) Summarize and compare these two works. Why do you think they are on adult-teen crossover lists? What makes an effective adult-teen crossover book? What are the possible issues in recommending adult books to teens?
3) Create an annotated list of six additional adult books that you'd recommend for teens based on reviews. For each, discuss why you think it would be appropriate for young adults.

Book summaries (2 Points)
Book comparisons (2 Points)
Annotated book list (4 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 6.3 Adult vs Young Reader Editions
What books are best for what readers?
1) A number of books written over the past decade can be read at two levels. On one level, it's a picture book designed for young children, but at another level it contains riddles, hidden content, satire, and/or deep meanings intended for more mature readers. Examples include The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, The Stinky Cheese Man and Fairly Stupid Tales, Math Curse, and Science Verse. Also, Uno's Garden and The Z Was Zapped. Authors like Steve Jenkins provide author notes further adult reading. Browse The Boy Who Loved Math: The Improbable Life of Paul Erdos by Deborah Heiligman. Explore a few of these examples.
2) Read John DuPuis' analysis of the book at Confessions of a Science Librarian. Do you think this "dual purpose" is effective and appropriate? Why or why not? Provide examples. They don't need to be related to math, but they should be nonfiction works. Find two other nonfiction work with a similar "duel" appeal. Provide annotations for these books. Are they more or less effective than Heiligman's approach? How are the "author/illustrator notes" used for extending the book's impact?
3) In many cases, young adults enjoy reading works written for adults. However increasingly, publishers are producing "teen versions" of nonfiction works such as Michael Pollan's book The Omnivore's Dilemma. Do you see these adaptations as a great way to gear an adult book to teens? Or, do you see them as an unnecessary "watering down" of content?
4) Locate a book with an adult version and an adaptation for a younger audience. What do you think of the adaptation? Do you think this a valuable way for youth to experience an adult book? Why or why not? Provide specific examples from the books to illustrate your ideas.
5) Read another pair of books with an adult version and youth version. Do you feel the same way about this adaptation? Compare and contrast how the two pairs addressed the issue of developing a youth version.
6) What guidelines would you suggest for authors adapting these types of works?

Discussion of the duel appeal with examples (1 Point)
Discussion of teen versions of books (2 Point)
Discussion of two pairs of books (4 Points)
Guidelines for adaptation (1 Point)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 6.4 Kits, Pop-ups, and Pinterest
How can nontraditional resources and approaches extend your resources and services?
1) Explore the Klutz publisher website. Think about how these non-traditional books would be stored and circulated. What special criteria would you use in selection? What are the pros and cons to purchasing these materials? Provide three specific, annotated book examples. State whether or not you'd actually purchase them for a particular library setting.
2) Explore pop-up nonfiction books for youth. Think about the pros and cons of these books in a nonfiction collection. What special criteria would you use in selection? What's the "real world" of pop-up books in the libraries. Interview a librarian regarding their thoughts about purchasing and circulating pop-up books.
3) Design a plan and guidelines for both kit-books and pop-ups in a library.
4) Many libraries use Pinterest to connect with the public. Do a Google search for pinterest library and you'll find examples. Share a couple pages you think are interesting.
5) Watch the booktalk at YouTube for Seeing Symmetry by Loreen Leedy. Think about how a social media tool like Pinterest could be used to share examples to go along with a book. Go to Seeing Symmetry by Loreen Leedy for an example. Brainstorm ways that other visual topics could use this tool to share historical photos, diagrams, infographic, or other visual representations. Go to Loreen Leedy's page for many other examples.
5) Build your own Pinterest page or board focusing on a specific nonfiction book for youth. Check out the Amelia Earhart Pinterest.

Klutz discussion and examples (2 Points)
Popup discussion and examples (2 Points)
Library plan (2 Points)
Pinterest discussion and board (2 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

Complete Litbit 6.

Complete BookBlog Entry 6 and Reflection.


Read Technology Connections.

LitBit 7: Technology Connections (10 Points, required)
Choose ONE of the following options.

LitBit 7.1 Build a Book Trailer
How can book trailers advertise books?
1) Watch some booktalks and book trailers at publisher websites or at YouTube. My Collection Development course links to popular Publisher YouTube Channels. Look for the children/teen divisions.
2) Critique at least three booktalks/booktrailers for youth providing the URL, summary, and review. What works and doesn't work in creating a video booktalk or book trailer? How are fiction and nonfiction treated differently? Create a set of guidelines for producing a video booktalk or book trailer for youth focusing on works of nonfiction. How can you engage readers by going beyond the book (i.e., costumes, props, music, special effects, mystery).
3) Create your own video booktalk or book trailer for the nonfiction selection of your choice. Or, create a genre booktalk promoting some section of your nonfiction collection. Your trailer should be engaging. I should want to run to the library to check it out. If you're going to do a traditional "talk at the camera and read an excerpt", choose another option. Instead, this is your chance to be create! Here are a couple examples: A Journey Through A History of Magic using iMovie, Family Romanov using iMovie, March using Moviemaker, Running for My Life using Animoto, and Stiff using PowToons.
4) Post your video on YouTube or Vimeo.

Booktalk examples and critique (1 Points)
Set of guidelines (1 Points)
Original booktalk (5 Points)
Use of YouTube or Vimeo (1 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 7.2 Infographics and Flowcharts
How can infographics be used with youth in the library?
1) Infographics are a wonderful tool to jumpstart information investigations. Go to Google Images and search for a topic adding the word "infographic" such as disaster infographic, war infographic, or bird infographic. You'll be amazed at what you find and the many ideas that the visuals will generate.
2) Generate a list of a six nonfiction books (title and author is all you need). Identify an infographic to go with each book. The visual should extend the reading experience in some way. Explain the connection between each book and its infographic. Provide the URL to access each infographic.
3) Create an infographic like the NPR's Fantasy vs SciFi flowchart to help youth locate a particular type of nonfiction. You might focus on a type such as narrative nonfiction or a genre such as biography. Discuss how this type of approach could be used as part of your readers' advisory program. Your infographic should include at least a dozen books. All you need is the book title and author.

Six nonfiction-infographic connections (3 Points)
Original infographic for reader's advisory (5 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 7.3 E-Books and Nonfiction
Which digital service is best?
1) Use a trial to explore two of the new digital services for young people that provide access to nonfiction works along with enhanced featured. First explore Lerner Digital using their free trial. Then, compare this service to one of Scholastic's Digital options such as TrueFlix, FreedomFlix, BookFlix, and Xbooks.
2) Describe your experience with each of the two service using specific searches and examples. Compare and contrast the two services. Be sure to use screen captures as examples in your discussion.
3) What are the benefits of using this type of service rather than simply using print materials?
4) What enhancements could you build for print books without these services? How could you tie in websites, maps, online videos, primary source materials, real objects, and other materials to create a similar yet different experience? Select a work of nonfiction for youth and search for digital materials that could extend the reading experience. Include an annotation and at least five additional digital resources such as websites or online databases.

Service summaries and examples (2 Points)
Service comparison and examples (2 Points)
Use of screen captures (1 Point)
Discussion of benefits (1 Point)
Book enhancement example (2 Points)
At least 2 high quality replies (2 Points)

LitBit 7.5 Revisit a LitBit
Look back over the options in LitBits 1-6 that you didn't choose. Complete one of these assignments.

Complete Litbit 7.

Read and Discuss

Let's have some fun simply reading works of nonfiction that "feel" like fiction... no reviews, no pressure... just an old-fashioned book discussion. I won't be grading these until the end of the semester, but I'll email you directly if I have concerns about the postings or replies.

This ten-point activity involves reading three works of nonfiction during the semester and sharing your thoughts about the book with your peers. I also want you to think about how you might connect the book with traditional fiction readers, educators who might use it in class, or youth who already enjoy informational reading, but aren't narrative nonfiction readers. You don't need to cite any course readings or professional articles unless you want to. However, you are required to include at least a couple direct references to the book including an excerpt or a page number.

Choose three from the list of eight recently published books below. A discussion forum has been established for each book:

  1. #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women edited by Mary Beth Leatherdale and Lisa Charleyboy
  2. The 57 Bus: A True Story by Dashka Slater
  3. Eyes of the World: Robert Capa, Gerda Taro, and the Invention of Modern Photojournalism by Marc Aronson and Marina Budhos
  4. Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek by Maya Van Wagenen
  5. Undefeated: Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team by Steve Sheinkin
  6. Vincent and Theo: The Van Gogh Brothers by Deborah Heiligman
  7. Wicked Bugs (Young Readers Edition): The Meanest, Deadliest, Grossest Bugs on Earth
    by Amy Stewart
  8. March: Book Three by John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

Feel free to make as many replies as you wish, but I'll be grading three of your comments. Your graded comments can either be focused on your thoughts about the book itself or ideas for promoting the book with youth.

Rather than a reflection, I want you to post a "Big Idea" about nonfiction or informational reading for youth. In other words, share an idea for a book club revolving around this topic, a way to get teachers, parents, or children excited about this type of literature, or some other cool thought and example. If you can't think of anything, share a book or book connection you made this semester that you haven't already shared. Need ideas? Read my Get The Facts! sheet I shared at ALA a few years ago.

Keep in mind that I'll be grading all of the discussions at once near the end of the semester.

10 Points Possible
Three high quality postings (6 point)
Three high quality replies (3 points)
A Big Idea (1 point)

Book Blog

You've probably noticed that I made extensive use of magazine blogs and individual blogs in this course. Partly, it's intended to provide the atmosphere of a Seminar. However, it's also to model the diverse approaches to blogging as a way to communicate with other professionals as well as library users.

You will be creating a book blog focusing on book reviews related to nonfiction works for youth.

When creating nonfiction book reviews, consider the following ideas for a quality review:

Blog Entries

It's your blog. I want you to make it your own. This is your chance to read and review books for youth! You can talk about whatever you wish on your blog. However, you need to include at least one book review with each entry that includes the suggested elements of a quality book review (outlined above). In some cases all of the guidelines above won't apply to a particular book. I won't be using the guidelines as evaluation criteria, instead they are intended as ideas.

ALL blog entries must include an image of some kind such as a book cover, interior page example, or some other related visual.

You can make it a general blog. Or, gear it toward a specific audience such as YA librarians, homeschool parents, or teens. Or, focus on a particular age group, subject area, or book form such as narrative nonfiction or procedural books. It's up to you.

Feel free to read and blog about any of the books presented, discussed, or used in a LitBit in class. However, you may NOT use the three books you discussed in the "Read and Discuss" section of the course. If you're not sure where to begin, I suggest looking at the recent award winners. Do you think they should have received an award? Why or why not? Also, check blogs like INK (no longer being updated).

I've also create a list of suggested readings at the bottom of this page in case you're looking for ideas.


Be sure to turn on the COMMENTS option in your blog so others can post comments!

Part of the fun of blogging is providing and receiving comments. There's not set requirement in terms of numbers. I'm hoping that you'll provide lots of support even if it's just a "Love it, gotta read it" comment. However, you will need to cite at least 4 "high quality" comments that you've made in your "Reflection". I'll be grading these four. You comments should include your thoughts along with book excerpts, connections with other books, and/or professional literature connections.

Building the Blog

You need to create a blog using a free service online. Consider using BloggerWeebly, or Wordpress. Be sure to set the comments so they are automatically posted. Or, you need to closely monitor and accept the individual comments so they can be seen by your peers.

Since you've created your blog, you need to share it in the Canvas forum.

You don't need to monitor all the blogs of your peers. Instead, I'll be randomly assigning you to a blog cohort group. In my weekly update, I'll notify you of the cohort group assignments. You'll be reading and commenting on those blogs for this assignment. However you're feel to enjoy all the blogs of your classmates.


Post a reflection in Canvas. Include the following two elements.

Blog Ideas

What might a great nonfiction blog look like? Read Reading the Perfect Nonfiction Blog by Elizabeth Bird (2016).

Check out the blogs of your classmates and other semesters. Go to the Blog page.

Checklist and Grading

Although I will be reading the blogs along with the class, I will not be grading your blog entries and comments until after you have submitted your final reflection. However, I will be tracking your postings to ensure that you don't fall behind. As long as you post your blog entries within a few days of the dates listed on the course calendar, there's no penalty. I won't be tracking the exact dates of your blog comments, but try to spread them out during the semester. DO NOT wait until the last few weeks to make comments or there will be a penalty.

20 Points Possible
Postings/comments made on schedule and opened blog for others to comment (1 point)
Seven book blog entries (14 points)
Four book blog HIGH QUALITY comments (4 points)
Reflection (1 point)

Book Ideas

It's fine to use any of the books on the Read and Discuss list. However, you should select different books than the ones you used for your own Read and Discuss postings. Below are some ideas:

Narrative Nonfiction

Picture Books


Humanities and Social Studies





Graphic Nonfiction

| eduscapes | IUPUI Online Courses | Teacher Tap | 42explore | About Us | Contact Us | ©2013-2018 Annette Lamb

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.