Shenandoah University will kick off its 32nd annual Children’s Literature Conference “Once Read, Never Forgotten: Creating Readers One Book at a Time,” by inviting the public to attend its second-ever “Rockin’ the Library” event on Monday, June 26, at 5 p.m. on the steps of the Handley Regional Library (100 W. Piccadilly St., Winchester). The event is free and open to the public.
Rockin’ the Library, a family-oriented event for elementary students and their parents, is a “Battle Bunny”-themed birthday party with cupcakes, a DJ, several children’s book character special guests and more. “Battle Bunny” is a book by authors Jon Scieszka and Mac Barnett, illustrated by Matt Myers. Children who attend will receive a free “Battle Bunny” birthday book, and parents can speak to authors Scieszka and Barnett, who will attend the event beginning at 5:30 p.m. to interact with families and talk about their books and the importance of reading.
The 32nd Children’s Literature Conference is held Monday, June 26, through Friday, June 30, on the campus of Shenandoah University. It is a popular, annual professional development conference for teachers and librarians to learn from and interact with internationally renowned children’s book authors and illustrators.
Throughout the week, participants will study with award-winning, best-selling authors and illustrators, including:
- Jon Scieszka (author of classics “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs” and “The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales”)
- Jewell Parker Rhodes (the Louisiana Girls children’s book trilogy, which includes “Ninth War,” “Sugar,” and “Bayou Magic”)
- Lisa Graff (“A Tangle of Knots”)
- award-winning Mexican author and illustrator Duncan Tonatiuh (“Pancho Rabbit and Coyote”)
- Jacqueline Davies (the Lemonade War series and “Panda Pants”)
- 2016 Caldecott Medal winner Sophie Blackall (“Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear”)
- Melissa Sweet (“A River of Words: The Story of Carlos Williams”)
- Raphael López (“Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed a Neighborhood”)
- 2017 Caldecott Honor Book illustrator Brendan Wenzel (“They All Saw a Cat”)
- New York Times bestselling author and illustrator Grace Lin (“Where the Mountain Meets the Moon”)
- Jen Bryant (“A River of Words: The Story of William Carlos Williams”)
- Pam Allyn (“Every Child a Super Reader”)
- 2017 Caldecott Honor Book illustrator R. Gregory Christie (“Freedom in Congo Square”)
- New York Times bestselling author and two-time Caldecott-Honor-winning collaborator Mac Barnett (“Sam & Dave Dig a Hole” and “Battle Bunny”)
According to long-time Children’s Literature Conference Director and Shenandoah University Professor of Education Karen Huff, Ed.D., getting the right books into children’s hands is the key to success in reading.
Each morning, authors and illustrators offer presentations, vividly sharing stories about their work. In the afternoons, participants are given the choice of attending small group workshops, roundtable discussions with the authors and illustrators, and classes on how to use literature to teach reading and writing. The guest speakers’ books are sold daily, with signing opportunities in the afternoon.
“There is no one book that is right for all kids, but there are all kinds of crazy, interesting and amazing books out there,” said Scieszka. “It’s our job to help kids find that book that inspires them to want to become readers.”
Participants who attend the conference may elect to earn up to three hours of graduate or undergraduate credit. To enroll in the conference, visit su.edu/childrenslit, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 540/545-7215.