What's Out There: Literacy Links

The Children’s Literature Navigator is like a website with one-stop shopping for links to anything related to children’s literature. Categories include art resources, authors, children’s book characters, early childhood links, including Get Ready to Read, folklore, illustrators, internet resources, story time and puppets, and young adults, among others.
Passport: International Children’s Literature does not include U.S. authors/illustrators but does have a “Just for Kids” category with links to several websites promoting communication between kids of different ethnic backgrounds. It also has a link to The World Fact Book, a publication of the Central Intelligence Agency that’s very useful for finding facts about different countries.
Kids Reads has reading lists for children from baby and toddler (ages 1-3) to older readers (ages 10-12). Listings include a picture of the book cover, author and publisher information, and a brief book description. Other categories include more features, authors, series, trivia, reviews, and games, which are word scrambles related to different books.
Members of the Screen Actors Guild Foundation read children’s books aloud in this online streaming video program. Each book includes related activities, and listeners can see the book’s illustrations as the story is read. Your computer must have a Flash Player plug-in to hear/see these delightful stories.
Although membership in the International Reading Association costs, there are many good resources available at no cost from this site. Parent booklets and brochures can be downloaded free, and under “literacy links” are many, excellent teacher/parent resources.
This site has hundreds of articles on a range of reading of topics. Most are for professional educators, but there are a couple neat links. Do a keyword search for online magazines for children and get links to lots of online magazines. Some of the content requires a subscription, but much is free. Using audiobooks as the keyword search brings links to audiobook reviews, online audiobooks, and suppliers.
In Nancy Polette’s Children’s Literature Site, look under “best books” to find Polette’s choices for picture books, junior novels, and non-fiction between the 1990s and 2000. Her literature guides are intended for teachers but could give you some activity ideas to enhance your child’s reading enjoyment.
This website by the National Children’s Book and Literacy Alliance has a section of Parents/Teachers/Mentors that has links the alliance feels will help kids become “lifelong readers and writers.” You’ll be able to link to a variety of websites from “why do kids need books?” to “parent and guardian basics” to reading advice for first graders through tweens, to name a few. Other resources include an article on finding a book that fits your child, how becoming a literacy role model can help your child become a reader, booklists, and plenty of other parent and teacher links.
Kids Bookshelf has the expressed goal of “bringing children and books together.” Among its resources are book reviews for different age groups, parent links, educational kids’ games, and information so kids can write to various authors. This site also publishes kids’ poems, short stories, and book reviews. For safety submitters are identified only by first name and age
Book Hooks gives readers the chance to publish illustrated book reports online. The site also had a featured word game and a featured site that could be used with digital photographs.
This Seussville Games website features online and printable games related to Dr. Seuss books. Shockwave is required for the online games.
How-To-Study.Com is self-described as “a study skills resource site.” Several of the links pertain to reading. Among the topics are strategies for reading textbooks and novels, using reference sources, building comprehension and vocabulary, and flexible reading. Visitors can choose a variety of other study topics, as well.
The Michigan Department of Education offers “Helping Children Learn to Read,” beginning with a brief discussion of national research about the importance of reading. Links are varied, from “Laying the Foundations of Reading,” “A Child Becomes a Reader,” and “Reading Rockets: Launching Young Readers.” The latter ties to the PBS series “Reading Rockets” and connects to eight separate programs.
This literacy guide, sponsored by Bank Street College, features strategies for successful readers for pre-, during-, and post-reading. Books are suggested for reading aloud to children and online resources are linked.
Education World focuses on the topic “Reading Aloud – Is It Worth It?” plus gives links to other online resources about reading aloud. This curriculum article is feared to teachers but its advice is applicable at home, as well as at school.
Book-Pop has web-enhanced storybooks children can read or be read to, and Story-Pop features audio animated stories narrated b y Stephen Cosgrove. Also available are print and color pages featuring Serendipity Characters from 12 different books.
This Merriam-Webster site not only provides an online dictionary but also lists words newly added to our language. Among other features are a word of the day, word games, and spelling bee hive.
The Library of Congress Center for the Book holds a National Book Festival each year and sponsors Letters about Literature for young readers. The Center’s “Read More about It” promotes reading lists for the American Memory collections maintained by the Library of Congress.
This state website features a helping books/helping families program. The idea is to use quality children’s literature as a springboard for group discussion activities. There is a literature database, and additional resources touch upon bibliotherapy, character education, family book discussions, moral development, storytelling, and the like.
The editors for this U.S. Department of Education website list their picks for websites dealing with improving student performance in reading. One link is to the Reading Report Card, which details the 2005 study of what U.S. students know and can do in reading. Another link connects with organizations that provide information or assistance with literacy and/or reading.
A teacher who wanted to match books to children’s reading levels developed this site. Her Leveled Book Lists are searchable by both author and title.
Ohio Reads is the state program that funds the MMS Land of Literacy and the Family Literacy Night. Use the link for websites to find several sites for organizations promoting reading.
Raising Readers is a Maine program but the website links to many resources across the country. Find information about the benefits of reading to children and ways to promote family literacy, as well as activities and crafts tied to select picture books.
This webpage, titled “Literacy Tips for the 10-Minute Parent,” is part of the PBS program “Between the Lions” website. There are many links to ideas that promote the fun of reading with young children.
The Mother Goose Pages offer tips on reading nursery rhymes with children of varying ages, lists recommended books and resources, provides an alphabetical list of verses, has a Mother Goose online ABC coloring book, and groups rhymes by themes.
This website is devoted to classic works of poetry, including Negro spirituals, for students in upper elementary grades. Full text is available.
Youngsters can find four stories to read online.
This website features 50 short video documentaries showcasing individual Americans reading and speaking personally about poems they love.
Giggle Poetry has oodles of entertaining poetry and activities, including tongue twisters and fill-in-the-blank poems.
Not only does KidSpace have resources for parents and teachers, but it also offers wonderful links under its Reading Zone button. A few of the many categories are picture books, myths and fables, poetry and rhymes, short stories, and advanced reading, which includes some online novels and a chilling selection of ghost stories.
Children’s Books Online: the Rosetta Project is an extensive collection of antique children’s books to read online or download. Some are translated into other languages: English, French, Spanish, Polish, Italian, Romanian, German, Dutch, Afrikaans, Chinese, Swedish, Croation, Greek, Finnish, and Farsi. You need to click the “to the library” link under the yellow cart to find the table of contents.
Find out what nursery rhymes and songs are sung by or to children in cultures around the world. The visitor to Mama Lisa’s World can search contents by clicking on icons of the continents or by using the alphabetical list of countries.
The FunBrain reading section features Mad Libs Junior and four web books: Diary of a Wimpy Kid, one Callahan Cousins title, and two titles in the Camp Confidential series.
The Reading Is Fundamental site provides resources and lists of books for both parents and students. Visitors can choose from book zone, activity lab, game station, or express themselves. Book zone has a book search function that brings up summaries, book covers, and kids’ ratings and reviews. This zone also includes a “meet the authors and illustrators” feature and read along stories and songs, including a few in Spanish.
The menu for Scholastic Kids site includes games, book central, and homework hub, described as having advice and references to jump-start reports. Book files offer summaries for selected classic novels such as Bridge to Terabithia, Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry, and Where the Red Fern Grows. Book Central includes an interview with a featured author, Goosebumps Graphix, lists of featured fantasies and other fiction, series updates, and lists of super reads.
The Reading Corner offers links to lists for readers in grades two to eight. Categories include Newbery, fiction, nonfiction, new books, picture books, young adult, author corner, and state awards.
Education Place’s Wacky Web Tales site is for use by those in grade three and up. Visitors first select from a number of story themes, then fill in a list asking for parts of speech. The program then fills in blanks in the story with the selected words and creates a wacky story. There is also a help connection about parts of speech.
This is an online collection of 655+ fables, indexed in table format. Some include Read Audio narrations or random images. This website also includes 127 fairy tales by Hans Christian Andersen.
The website Audiobooks for Free hosts hundreds of audiobooks in several genres. These are available to download to MP3 players free of charge. Parents can screen those with strong language or those for “adults only.” Some titles are available in other languages.
Supported by Ohio University, Kids’ Corner at Wired for Books hosts several audiobooks: The Tale of Peter Rabbit, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Grimm’s Fairytales, and Just So Stories.
The children’s librarians at Monroe County Public Library have compiled many links to theme-related lists of children’s books.

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Updated January 23, 2007

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