Issue Theme: Diverse Books: Windows, Mirrors, Doors, Maps, and More


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Issue Theme: Diverse Books: Windows, Mirrors, Doors, Maps, and More

Calls for Manuscripts

Counter-Storytelling through Graphic Life Writing
Elizabeth Marshall
Abstract: Using the lens of critical race theory, this study examines the schooling experiences of racialized and indigenous girls in autobiographical and biographical picturebooks. The concept of “counter-storytelling” guides the analysis of three examples of graphic life writing, including Duncan Tonatiuh’s biography of Sylvia Mendez and her family in Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation, Ruby Bridges’s memoir Through My Eyes, and Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton’s coauthored auto/biography When I Was Eight. This article proposes graphic life writing as one way to incorporate diverse books into the curriculum and highlights how authors and illustrators counter histories of racialized misrepresentation in text and image through the creation of culturally specific stories of resistance.

Critical Texts in Literacy Teacher Education: Living Inquiries into Racial Justice and Immigration
Kathleen Riley and Katherine Crawford-Garrett
Abstract: In this article, we use practitioner research to explore the challenges and possibilities of including critical texts in elementary classrooms. In particular, we illustrate what happens when we invite preservice teachers to live a critical curriculum in two undergraduate literacy methods courses in distinct geographical locations. After situating the research within the current political moment characterized by standardization and discourses of certainty, we review existing literature on the challenges and opportunities of bringing social issues and critical texts into elementary classrooms. We then draw upon data from two undergraduate literacy methods courses to illustrate how pedagogies that center non-mainstream perspectives, make space for student inquiry, and model uncertainty have the potential to prompt preservice teachers to overcome barriers to including critical texts and to think differently about what might be possible in literacy teaching and learning.

Social Justice Literature and Writing: The Case for Widening Our Mentor Texts
Emily Smith-Buster
Abstract: Emily E. Smith, the 2015 recipient of the Donald H. Graves Writing Award, explains how she designed curriculum to amplify student voices through a social justice lens.

Research & Policy: Stories Still Matter: Rethinking the Role of Diverse Children’s Literature Today
Ebony Elizabeth Thomas
Abstract: This essay reviews the landscape of diversity in children’s literature one year after NCTE’s Resolution on the Need for Diverse Children’s and Young Adult Books.  

Language Arts Lessons: A Ride with Nana and CJ: Engagement, Appreciation, and Social Action
Rudine Sims Bishop
Abstract: This column describes a three-pronged approach to incorporating into a classroom a book that represents some aspect(s) of diversity. 

Invited Dialogue: Tales and Testimonies: Viewpoints on Diverse Literature from Duncan Tonatiuh and Violet J. Harris
Jennifer D. Turner
Abstract: This article features a discussion with Mr. Duncan Tonatiuh and Dr. Violet J. Harris about the importance of diverse literature for children in the United States. 

Children's Literature Reviews: 2016 Charlotte Huck Award for Outstanding Fiction for Children
Detra Price-Dennis, Barbara Kiefer, Denise Dávila, Angie Zapata, Franki Sibberson, Joyce Herbeck, and Stacey Ross
Abstract: This review column, written by members of the Charlotte Huck Award Committee, presents the winner  of the 2016 Charlotte Huck Award for Outstanding Fiction for Children as well as the Honor and Recommended books. 

Children's Literature Reviews: 2016 Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children
Cyndi Giorgis, Mary Ann Cappiello, Jeanne Gilliam Fain, Marie LeJeune, Ruth McKoy Lowery, Marianne Richardson, and Scott Riley
Abstract: This children's literature review column, written by members of the Orbis Pictus Award Committee, presents the 2016 winner of the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children, as well as the Honor and Recommended books.

Perspectives on Practice: On Listening to Children: Family Variation in an After-School Reading Club
Rachel Skrlac Lo
Abstract: Using an epistemic justice framework, this article considers how children talk about diverse family structures and how picturebooks can be a tool to deepen understanding.