May 25, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

“Thirteen Reasons Why” Tops Most Challenged List

The ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom tracked 354 challenges to library, school and university materials and services in 2017, and Monday released its annual list of Top 10 Most Challenged Books.

A true gift from SHEG: DIY digital literacy assessments and tools for historical thinking

You may remember Stanford History Education Group (SHEG) for its groundbreaking and utterly depressing report, Evaluating Information: The Cornerstone of Online Civic Reasoning. In the November 2016 Executive Summary, the researchers shared: When thousands of students respond to dozens of tasks there are endless variations. That was certainly the case in our experience. However, at each level—middle […]

New Fuse 8 n’ Kate Episode: If I Ran the Zoo by Dr. Seuss

As I mentioned yesterday, today’s episode is in honor of Banned Books Week. And let me tell you, it was hard to find an appropriate picture book without covering already well trod ground. In retrospect we should have held off on Heather Has Two Mommies until now and not jumped the gun back in the […]

How Bill Cosby Ruined a Perfectly Good Banned Books Week

Tomorrow I’ll be posting the latest episode of my blog with my sister Fuse 8 n’ Kate. In it, we’ll be reading a picture book challenged relatively recently somewhere in the continental U.S. To find such a book I consulted the American Library Association’s listings of Frequently Challenged Books. As I scrolled through the lists […]

FL Schools Brace for Book Challenges

After passage of a new state law allowing citizens to challenge educational materials in their county, Florida school librarians are wondering what the process will mean for them come fall.

Fusenews: Because it’s not like you can just buy a mitochondria dress anywhere

Yesterday was spent at the New England SCBWI Conference in Springfield, Mass.  Today is being spent moving all my stuff across the street into my brand new home.  As will tomorrow.  And the day after that.  And the day after that.  And the day . . . you get the picture. To combat this incessant […]

Parent Objects to Depiction of Islam in Textbook

A middle school parent in Tennessee has asked that ‘My World History’ be removed from the seventh grade curriculum.

SLJ Controversial Book Survey: Data and Findings

Download SLJ’s 2016 Controversial Books Survey report, exploring self-censorship among school librarians.

Banned Books Are Often Diverse Books. Check the Stats.

Twenty-nine books on ALA’s top 10 challenged books lists from 2001–2015 have diverse content.

SLJ Controversial Books Survey Responses: Weighing Subject Matter

SLJ’s 2016 Controversial Books Survey, addressing self-censorship, asked school librarians: “When making purchasing decisions, do find yourself weighing the effect of controversial subject matter more often now than you did one or two years ago?” Here’s what respondents who answered “yes” had to say.

SLJ Controversial Books Survey: Comments About Book Challenges

In SLJ’s 2016 Controversial Books Survey, we asked school librarians to tell us about a book challenge they had personally experienced or to communicate other information about this topic.
Here’s what they said.

SLJ Controversial Book Survey: Comments About Age-Appropriateness

SLJ’s 2016 Controversial Books survey asked school librarians how they determined if a book is age-appropriate. Here’s what they said.

SLJ Controversial Books Survey: Word Clouds

School librarians mentioned these terms the most in their their answers to two questions in SLJ’s 2016 survey, which explores self-censorship.

Hear No Evil | Listen In

Sharon Grover and Liz Hannegan consider whether listening to challenged books is a different experience than consuming in print

This article was published in School Library Journal's August 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

The Latest Tale of Captain Underpants Kept Out of School Book Fair

The 12th “Captain Underpants” novel will only be available to school kids in Monroe, MI, if they specifically order it. It is not in the school library or at book fairs.

Celebrate the Freedom to Read: Helping Michelle crowd source this great BBW resource

It’s Banned Books Week.  Michelle Luhtala shares a crowd-sourced project that will help us promote censorship awareness as we pool our efforts to create a project with far and lasting reach. Michelle proposes that we work together and contribute to a Challenged Books Slide Show. She explain explains the back story: This project began when […]

Banned Books Week 2015: What Librarians Are Planning

From a costumed read-a-thon to a display with yellow “Caution!” tape, here’s what librarians are planning for Banned Books Week 2015 (September 29 to October 3) and Banned Websites Awareness Day (September 30).

New Zealand Bans YA Title “Into the River”; Imposes Fine for Selling, Sharing Book

Ted Dawe’s award-winning YA novel Into the River, about a Maori boy at a boarding school, is the first book to be banned in New Zealand in 22 years.

Charleston Library Hands Out “Some Girls Are” After School Bans Book

The Charleston Public Library in South Carolina gave 1,000 copies of Courtney Summers’s Some Girls Are to teens after a high school removed the book from its summer reading list.

ALA Addresses its Challenged Book List After Questioning by FiveThirtyEight

ALA explains the process behind the Frequently Challenged Books list, following a pointed story on the site FiveThirtyEight.