Children’s Literature Symposium

The biennial Children’s Literature Symposium began in 2011 and is jointly hosted by University Libraries and the Reich College of Education.

Upcoming Events

2023 Children’s Literature Symposium

Stories & Music Across Cultures, March 31-April 1, 2023

Visiting authors Jeff Zentner, Raúl the Third, and Rajani LaRocca.

On Friday, March 31, Jeff Zentner and Raúl the Third will visit area schools.

On Saturday, April 1, Jeff Zentner, Raúl the Third, and Rajani LaRocca will offer a professional development workshop for teachers and librarians in-person on the App State campus.

Free registration for the 2023 symposium is now open.  Full schedule below.  Registration closes March 27.

Children's Literature Symposium Schedule

8:30-8:45     CHECK-IN
8:45-9:00     Welcome
9:00-9:45     KEYNOTE: Rajani LaRocca, "Not Just One Thing"
10:00-10:40     Breakout Session 1: Rajani (room C) and Raúl (room B)
10:50-11:30     Breakout Session 2: Rajani (room B) and Jeff (room C)
11:40-12:20     Breakout Session 3: Raúl (room C) and Jeff (room B)
12:30-1:50     LUNCH & KEYNOTE: Jeff Zentner, "Dreams are a Form of Energy"
2:00-2:45     KEYNOTE: Raúl the Third, "Origin Stories"
3:00-4:00     BOOK SIGNING

Previous Events

2021 Children’s Literature Symposium

Exploring Empathy, Imagination, and Agency in Children's Literature, March 24 & 31, 2021 via Zoom

Visiting authors Meg Medina and Lauren Castillo.

On March 24, Meg Medina visited area schools and offered a professional development workshop for teachers and librarians.

On March 31, Lauren Castillo visited area schools and offered a professional development workshop for teachers and librarians.

2017 Children’s Literature Symposium

Crafting Stories with Poetry and Prose, October 26–28, 2017

Visiting authors Allan Wolf, Alan Gratz, Heather Bouwman, and storyteller Donna Washington.

On October 26–27, Alan Gratz and Heather Bouwman visited area public schools, led discussions in Appalachian State University classrooms, and offered a program at the Watauga County Public Library.

The Saturday, October 28 program provided professional development opportunities for librarians and teachers. Allan Wolf presented the keynote address and joined Alan Gratz and Heather Bouwman in leading breakout sessions on the theme Crafting Stories with Poetry and Prose. Donna Washington provided a storytelling performance.

The symposium was sponsored by Chuck and Pauletta Parker, Mary Helen Ridenhour, Charles and Elaine Graham, and the Martha and Nancy Lee Bivens Distinguished Professorship for Children and Reading.

2015 Children’s Literature Symposium

Stories about Children with Disabilities, November 5–7, 2015

Visiting authors Kathryn Erskine, Joseph Bathanti, and the performance poetry group Poetry Alive!

2013 Children’s Literature Symposium

A Day of Stories, Songs, Poetry and Prose, November 9, 2013

Joseph Bruchac was the keynote speaker and author. Joseph Bathanti and Edie Hemingway offered breakout sessions. Lunchtime programming was provided by Native American drummers and dancers.

2011 Children’s Literature Symposium

November 5, 2011

Deborah Wiles was our keynote speaker and author. Poetry Alive offered a breakout session and lunchtime programming.