Subscribe to SLJ
Nonfiction Matters
Inside Nonfiction Matters

Illustration and NF: World Evocation

This business about reviewers and illustration is still bothering me. I wonder if it goes back to MLIS programs: not all of them have courses in NF, or spend more than one class session in a Materials for Children (or YA) on NF. And even if they do have a class or session, I wonder […]

Reviewing a Fraction of a Book — My 900th Blog

This is my 900th blog and I’m going to use it — I hope — to change one crucial way in which people judge middle grade and YA NF. There is one defining characteristic for NF K-12. The books we craft for each and every one of our readers, from concept and board books through […]

Beauty: Lines and Forms

Yesterday afternoon Marina and I treated ourselves to a piano recital by Murray Perahia. I’m going to give you two Youtube links — one for his exquisite playing; another — longer — one in which he talks about form and structure within a Mozart piece he is both rehearsing and conducting. I’m using this […]

Yet Another C We Need to Consider: Curriculum

In my CC talks I often say the third C in Common Core is “collaboration” — within the school the librarian and the teachers need to work together; publishers whose books juxtapose well need to realize they are not in a zero-sum fight for shelf space. I still believe that, but recently my attention has […]

Adventures in Dystopia

By fortunate coincidence, just at the Hunger Games tsunami is hitting young people, my YA Materials class pulled in to Dystopia Station — Maze Runner; Ship Breaker; The Hunger Games; Feed. Rereading the four novels even as merchandizers hawk Hunger Games nail polish made me think about why dystopia is so popular — and how […]

The Big Picture and Why I Like It

Recently many of these blogs have been about the Common Core, what it means to schools and libraries, and my various contacts and experiences in talking about CC implementation. From time to time I, and members of the INK Think Tank, have talked about authors Skyping in to schools. And over at CCBC some parallel […]

Short Bits: NF as Fast Food

The discussion theme over at the CCBC listserve has been on nonfiction — first books in the elementary years, now middle grade and high school. Woven in to that discussion — which generally wavers between people listing fave raves and broader and more thematic posts — has been concern about exactly the same issue I […]

Dating Service for Grad Students and Society

In my blog on “Pandemonium” I spoke about how the twin forces of the Common Core and digital publishing are rippling through schools, libraries, and publishing houses. But a series of recent conversations suggest that the epicenter of shock, and change, is even wider than I’d supposed: just as K-12 teachers are being asked to […]

“The More You Know The More You Are Able to Learn”

Yesterday brought the time change and nice weather to our neck of the woods and so the boys were in an out of the house and playing an endless variety of outdoor games seemingly forever. They came in exhausted, cranky, difficult. At bedtime, it was my turn to read to our younger son and I […]

“The End of Nonfiction”?: A Weaver’s Response

I’m sure many of you have read Chris Harris’s thought-provoking essay, on The End of Nonfiction: I’ve admired Chris from a distance over the years for his full-on plunge into technology, librarianship, and education — he seems to be totally familiar with every digital development I’m just reading about. And there are several strands […]