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RELATED RESEARCH PROJECTS

appgapii
Institute of Museum and Library Services

The focus of this three-year, multisite project is development of app-based curricula and tools for use in school and public libraries. These tools will teach children aged eight to twelve how to build their own apps, providing them with early programming experience, and allow them to share their creations with other children. The project further establishes libraries as places to engage youth in STEM exploration and digital development that reflects their own experiences.

This project builds on a project conducted with support from a planning-phase grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services titled, "Closing the App Gap." 

“The App Authors project is an exciting expansion...

childrecomicsprint
University of Illinois Research Board

This project expands Tilley’s investigation of comics from the perspective of readers, a much-neglected group in both contemporary and historical research. Comics readership among young people peaked in the mid-twentieth century with levels reaching near 100%, yet there has been little scholarly investigation of this phenomenon. Funding for this project will enable archival research trips and hourly research support to complete data collection necessary for a single-author monograph that will provide a coherent examination of the social and cultural role of comics in United States’s children’s print culture throughout the twentieth century.

mapping_info_access

Mapping Information Access is a collaborative academic research project to study and understand the landscape of information access and availability in public schools and libraries in the United States.

There are more than 18,000 public school districts and more than 9,000 public library systems in the US. Each of these institutions is as a central node of information access for the communities they serve. Administrators must balance ideals of free speech and information with concerns about social norms, age-appropriateness, and budgets. These decisions then shape the flow of information to students, patrons, and other constituents. Yet the contours of this flow are not well understood. There exists no comprehensive record of the sorts of challenges faced, or decisions made,...

mechanicalliteracies

This project examines writers who represent education as an embodied experience, with learning and literacy grounded in what they called “object learning” or “the education of things.” Denouncing rote-learning in favor of an induction method, object lessons promised to coordinate the development of body and mind by using the pupil’s senses as a catalyst for higher cognitive thought. Children place themselves above the elements composing their environment, which they control through what Hoiem calls “mechanical literacy”—that is, by learning the dependable laws governing how things are sensed, manipulated, created, purchased, manufactured, and exchanged. The project mobilizes a uniquely diverse archive of material and print cultures—pedagogical treatises, radical newspapers, automaton...

somethingbeautiful_cooke

Picture books, such as those in the Marantz Collection (Kent State University’s School of Library and Information Science), play an important role in developing literacy in our library users—from traditional literacy (as it relates to reading), to visual literacy, to cultural literacy. Exposing patrons of all ages to the messages contained in children’s literature can have lasting and beneficial effects, and can shape how readers view the world. It is for this reason that it is vitally important to examine the social justice messages that exist in the current literature and to advocate for even more social justice and diversity in the world of picture books. Per her interests in incorporating social justice into LIS pedagogy, Cooke will look for the messages contained in the texts (e.g...

IN THE NEWS

Jun. 15, 2018

Deborah Stevenson, director of The Center for Children's Books at the iSchool, will present the App Authors research project at the Border-Crossing in Children’s Literature: The Second International Symposium for Children's Literature, which will be held on June 14-15 at Princeton University. The symposium will facilitate an exchange of ideas on new issues in children’s literature research between scholars from the East and West.

Stevenson, who is a principal investigator on the App Authors project with Associate Professor Kate McDowell, will give the talk, "App Authors: Coding Outside the Educational Box." She will discuss how the three-year project, App Authors: Closing the App Gap II, has developed a curriculum for use in school and public libraries that...

Jun. 12, 2018

Please join us at this professional networking event to connect those who support the work of youth librarianship and school libraries. You'll have the chance to meet educators from across the country who are in town for the 2018 Summer Getaway: Professional Development for School Librarians along with regional librarians and educators. The iSchool will provide tasty snacks and the venue will have a cash bar for your convenience. 

Please register online at go.illinois.edu/qualityk12 so we can be sure to bring enough snacks for all.

Apr. 20, 2018
magee-sq

Assistant Professor Rachel M. Magee has been awarded a three-year Early Career Development grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS grant RE-07-18-0054-18), under the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program, which supports "developing a diverse workforce of librarians to better meet the changing learning and information needs of the American public by enhancing the training and professional development of librarians, developing faculty and library leaders, and recruiting and educating the next generation of librarians."

The IMLS-funded project, "Young Researchers: Collaborating with Youth and Libraries for Community Based Scholarship," builds on a pilot study Magee conducted in 2016-2017, in which a small group of teens in Illinois learned how to help design, implement, analyze, and report on original research.

"Working with teens in the pilot study for the...

Mar. 13, 2018
mitts-smith-sq

Adjunct Assistant Professor Debra Mitts-Smith (MS '98, PhD '07), author and expert on children's and young adult literature, will serve as the distinguished speaker for the 2018 Charles W. Mann Jr. Lecture in the Book Arts on March 22 at Pennsylvania State University.

Her talk will focus on images of the wolf in children's books published in Western Europe and North America from the sixteenth century to the present. She will address the values and attitudes that inform our depictions of the wolf, and how illustrations of wolves in children's books impart social, cultural and scientific information not only about wolves, but also about humans and human behavior. The event is available for livestream viewing on Mediasite Live.

Mitts-Smith's research focuses on visual culture, children's literature, and the history...

Jan. 22, 2018
toadbook

The Hidden Life of a Toad, written and illustrated with photographs by Doug Wechsler, and published by Charlesbridge, is the winner of the 2018 Gryphon Award for Children's Literature.

The Gryphon Award, which includes a $1,000 prize, is given annually by the Center for Children's Books (CCB). The prize is awarded to the author of an outstanding English language work of fiction or non-fiction for which the primary audience is children in kindergarten through fourth grade, and which best exemplifies those qualities that successfully bridge the gap in difficulty between books for reading aloud to children and books for practiced readers. With a core of regular committee members, the award has become a way to contribute to an ongoing...

Jan. 11, 2018

You're well dressed and resume ready. Once you get to the career fair, what will you say to employers? At this session we'll discuss how to present your educational and professional experience to employers in a concise and effective fashion.

Jan. 10, 2018

The staff at The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB) has announced the 2017 Blue Ribbons, their choices for the best of children's and young adult literature for the year. Blue Ribbons are chosen annually by BCCB reviewers and represent what they believe to be outstanding examples of fiction, nonfiction, and picture books for youth.

Thirty-two titles received Blue Ribbons for 2017, and the full list is available on the BCCB website. "The Blue Ribbons are a testimony not only to the literature's quality but to its breadth," said Editor Deborah Stevenson. "We've got a heartbreaking novel inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement; a compelling poetry collection built on a dialogue with poets of the Harlem Renaissance; sophisticated nonfiction presenting Vincent Van Gogh in a way never seen before; and a gentle picture book presenting a long family car trip in the rain."

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