Children’s Literature Advocacy

The Children's Literature Assembly (CLA) of the National Council of Teachers of English is a professional community of children’s literature enthusiasts who advocate the centrality of literature in children’s academic and personal lives. We believe every teacher needs a wide and extensive knowledge base of books published for children and young adults.

It is a teacher's privilege and responsibility to help students discover the joy of reading, while they also teach students how to internalize the skills and strategies of fluent reading. This occurs through teacher modeling, reading aloud quality literature to the class, recommending books to children based on their individual interests, and through incorporating literature into teaching lessons and learning activities across the curriculum. To that end, the members of CLA are dedicated to achieving the following goals:

  • To provide a forum for exchange among teachers of children's literature who share keen interest in children and classrooms;
  • To promote children's literature as a field of learning, research, and classroom application;
  • To undertake and disseminate programs and projects of special interest to those interested in children's literature; and
  • To work cooperatively with other organizations devoted to the promotion of literature in children's lives;

In our pursuit of these goals, we engage in the following advocacy work:

  • publish the biannual, peer-reviewed Journal of Children's Literature that includes empirical research involving children’s literature, interviews with and profiles of noted authors and illustrators, as well as reviews of children's and professional books;
  • create the annual Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts Award
  • host the following events at NCTE’s annual convention
    • Children’s Literature Breakfast featuring notable authors and illustrators as keynote speakers,
    • Children’s Literature Master Class where teachers and teacher educators engage in discussion and activities focused on teaching children’s literature in post-secondary institutions, and the
    • Children’s Literature Workshop, an interactive, thematic session involving notable children’s authors, illustrators, editors, and publishers.

The Children's Literature Assembly seeks the support of all individuals and organizations engaged in the preparation and continuing education of teachers in the pursuit of this essential goal.