LIST 4374-Summer I, 2010

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Department of Curriculum & Instruction


Summer 2010



Instructor Information:



Peggy Semingson, Ph. D.


817-526-0927 (cell)


322-N Science Hall






Third Floor, Science Hall


Office Hrs:

Monday-Thursday, 3:00-4:30 pm or by appointment



Instructor Web Site:

Course Web Site:





Course Information:


Course Title:


Course Number:

LIST 4374


Summer 2010

Course Location and Time

 See MyMav


Catalog Description


Comprehensive approach to literacy instruction. Emphasis on using genres of children¿s literature to promote language and literacy development. Instructional models and techniques for using children¿s literature across the curriculum. Use of appropriate media and non-print materials, selection and evaluation of literature, and strategies for stimulating and expanding children's response to literature.


Course Prerequisites:


College of Education Eligibility for Admission and Enrollment
Students seeking admission to the College of Education must meet specific criteria set by the College of Education and complete or satisfy the following requirements for unconditional admission:

  • Satisfying the University's credit hour requirements for admission to a degree plan as outlined on p. 37 of the catalog.
  • Petition for admission.
  • Submit transcripts from each college or university the student has attended (reflecting all current/completed semesters).
  • Meet College of Education requirements on the TASP: Reading-270; Writing-220; Math-230.
  • Have a GPA of at least 2.75 (overall or for the last 60 hours, whichever is higher).
  • Any other assessment requirements deemed necessary by the College of Education.



Required Textbook(s) and Materials:


*Galda, L. and Cullinan, B.E. (2009). Literature and the Child (7th ed.). Toronto: Wadsworth.


*You can also use the 6th edition, but note that the chapter numbers are not the same as the 7th edition.


Children’s literature as specified in the course syllabus and calendar.


Course Reserve:  copies of the Galda and Cullinan textbook will be placed on Reserve at the UTA Central Library. They will be available for 24 hour checkout at a time. Be mindful of the due date on Reserve items; fines accrue quickly.


Assignments Overview





Author Presentation


Sign up for your presentation day. Bring your handouts and plenty of examples of the author’s books.


Upload your brochure or handout to Blackboard by the specified due date.




30 X 4 points each=120 points total


Post your book talks to Blackboard. Type these up using Word.




Learning Logs


(10 X 10 points each=100 points possible). These are posted to Blackboard by the specified due date.


As specified in the course calendar; submit these to Blackboard by the specified due dates. Bring a printed copy to class or your laptop for discussion groups.


Read-aloud Service Project


Read at least two children’s books over a one or two meeting session with a child or children. Write a 2-page reflection about what you did and what you learned.


You can read any of the sustainability books or any of the children’s books we have read for the course.  You can also read from the ZooBooks collection.


I will provide templates that you will use to fill out about your project.


Read a collection (two or more books) of quality literature to a student or group of students and reflect on how it went and what impact you made.

This will be done in two parts.

Part 1: Provide a written overview of your project. State a description of your setting, list of books you will read, and at least five overarching goals for your project.  Due by the fourth class session. [10 points]

Part 2: Write a 2-4 page (double-spaced) reflective summary of your project. Use the provided reflection template to summarize your project.[20 points]

Take Home Final Exam (short answer/essay questions)--

30 points

The take home final exam will be distributed a week before it is due. Complete it on your own and submit it to Blackboard by the specified due date. It will be due the last class day.



Total Points Possible: 300 points possible



Descriptions of major assignments and examinations with due dates:

1) Author Presentation- 20 points possible

 During one class meeting, you will help the class become familiar with an author/poet through a presentation where you share information about the author and his/her works.  Class members will have read at least several works by the author. You will type a brochure or handout, using primarily a “bullet” format, to present information you have found.  Information presented must include 1) interesting information about the author’s life, 2) what the author says or what you learn about the author’s writing experiences, 3) any awards the author received, and 4) a listing of the author’s publications. Do not cut and paste information from a website. The entire handout must be in your own words except for the list of author’s publications and any awards won. Please bring a copy of our handout for the instructor and for the students in the class on the day of the presentation. Read the books you bring by that author and be prepared to discuss each one briefly with the class. Have the books displayed on the table and be prepared to discuss the books in depth. The handout should be 1-2 pages (single-spaced) and the presentation should be about 10-15 minutes long. You need to practice and read aloud from at least one of the books. Please dress up for your presentation.

Due date: The day you present. Upload your handout  to Blackboard by the specified due date.

Rubric for Author Presentation (20 points possible)

1.      Presentation in class was engaging, handouts were provided for all class members, and a PowerPoint was used                                                                                                       /5 points

2.      Handout included required components, the handout was written in your own words, cited all references, and few to no mistakes were on the handout                                         /5 points

3.      Representative examples of the author’s books are part of the presentation and the presenter was very well prepared to discuss the books brought and shared with the class         /5 points

4.       The presentation included at least one read-aloud (brief—under five minutes) of at least one of the author’s books. The read-aloud was expressive and enthusiastic                          /5 points

2) Booktalks-30 formal written booktalks x 4 points each = 120 points possible.

Class members are required to read at least 30 books.  You will read all of the books and complete all booktalks according to the guidelines. For each book, include 1) information on the book, 2) Retelling, 3) Personal Response, and at least 3-5 open-ended questions for each book.

Example of a Reader Response Entry/Booktalk: Click here for examples of reader response entries. Note: these examples don't follow the format exactly as you will do them, but you can get a sense of content and length for the response and retelling sections.

The grade for this portion of the course will be based upon the quality of the entries of each booktalk That is, entries should not be skeletal, but they should reflect careful reading and reflection. Be sure to include the entire plot if it is a work of fiction.  For poetry and nonfiction, be sure to include details which convey clearly what types of poetry is included or what kinds of information is in the book.  Rather than sounding like a professional book review, your retelling should sound more like talk written down.   In writing your personal response, assume you are sharing your thoughts with your students and/or adults.  Your response can include evaluations of the book, but it needs to include also your thoughts and feelings that come to mind during reading/after reading that relate to your experiences.  Being aware of your personal responses and being able to communicate them are critical for providing authentic literacy experiences.  In sharing your thoughts/feelings, you establish trust between you and your students.  Also, your sharing “invites” students to share. To receive full credit, both the  personal response and retelling sections must adhere to these guidelines. (Please see format for reading record sheet on next page.) You must do a booktalk for the designated children’s books we are reading. The number for each date will vary on different class sessions, but the format for the booktalk remains the same.

Due date: each class meeting, as designated in the course schedule. Late posts will lose points.

Booktalk Post (single space)                          # (to designate the number out of the total)

 1) Book Information



 Author's last name, Author's first name

Illustrator's last name, Illustrator's first name [if applicable]

 Year       Published


2) Retelling (What is the book about? Please retell or describe in your own words, as if you are talking to someone. What is helpful is to read the book, and then type as you retell the story, as you would if you were talking to someone who has not read the book. Please note that I am not asking for a book review.

3) Personal Response (What are your thoughts, feelings, reflections during reading? For example, how did you feel about what was taking place, or what a character did? What types of ideas and emotions came to mind? Do you have an experience to share that comes to mind?) Rather than including statements of evaluation or how you think students would respond, please focus mainly on your thoughts, feelings, reflections that come to mind.  If your response includes evaluative statements, please include statements of personal response by reflecting upon how a characteristic of the book affected you. Please do not be general. Please also reflect upon why you have a certain feeling. Please do not be skeletal, and share as if you are talking to children and/or adults---just as you would in talking about a movie or some other type of experience. Length is not the most important factor necessarily, but responses should indicate genuine reflection to receive full credit.


4)  Open-Ended Discussion Questions. In thinking how you might generate discussion using this text with students, include a minimum of three open-ended discussion questions that you might pose to your future students to start dialogue and discussion about key themes and ideas in the text. The questions can relate to particular sections of the text or to overarching themes across the entire text. You might refer to Bloom’s Taxonomy in crafting your questions. These should be similar in scope to the types of high-level open-ended discussion questions advocated by Beck & McKeown in their Text Talk article.

These web-sites have more (brief) information on asking effective open-ended questions. Please visit one or more of the links below to learn how to ask fabulous open-ended questions.'sworkshop/questioning_strategies.htm


 Rubric for each book (4 points possible for each book).

Note: Booktalks must be posted on time. Booktalks that are posted more than 24 hours late may not receive full credit. A point will be deducted for each day that it is late. After four days, the booktalk will not be accepted for credit.

4 points-The booktalk is included an in-depth response and retelling for all books assigned on that date. Booktalks reflected a thorough understanding of the book’s content. Response was genuine. All components of the booktalk were included.

 3 points-The booktalks included a mostly in-depth response for responses and retellings for books assigned on that date. However, booktalk was somewhat general and lacked detail. All components of the booktalk were included.

 2 points-The response was overly general and/or stayed at the superficial level. It reflected a very cursory understanding of the texts read. One or more components of the booktalk were missing.

 1 point-The booktalk was very skeletal and stayed at the superficial level. It reflected a very cursory understanding of the texts read. One or more components of the booktalk were missing.

3) Learning Log- 50 points; 10 X 5 points each = 50 points possible; These will be uploaded to Blackboard. 12 font, single spaced.

Class members will complete a learning log entry for each reading from the textbook assigned. 

EXAMPLE of a LEARNING LOG (2-3 pages; single-spaced). All learning logs will be uploaded to Blackboard. However, please bring your printed learning log to class as discussion material—RESPONDING to the textbook:  Literature and the Child. Use size 12 font, single spaced. Use the format below. Include all five criteria and include an  in-depth response that indicates your close and careful reading of the chapter. Do NOT skim the chapter.

  Big ideas (at least 5 big ideas stated in complete sentences).

  Connections (other classes, experiences) (text-self; text-text, text-world)

  Questions  you pose to the text

  Favorite quotes and response to those quotes ( 3-5 quotes)

  Applications to teaching




Peggy Semingson

LIST 4374/Summer 1

Learning Log #1: Chapter 1


Chapter 1: Children’s and Adolescent Literature: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow


Big ideas


1. Literature comes in a wide variety of genres, styles, and serves different purposes, including entertaining, providing information, and educating; some books do all these things and more.

2. Literature helps students to write well as they see the author’s “craft” and stylistic words, patterns, and use of language; literature fosters the reading-writing connection.

3.  There are several key elements across narrative (story-like) text; these include: setting, characterization, plot, theme, and style.

4. Genres include: poetry, folklore, fantasy, science fiction, realistic fiction, historical fiction, biography, non-fiction, and picture books (which encompass all genres).

5. Issues and trends in the topic include: blurred age boundaries, topics that focus on current issues, and the idea that books extend across printed text (e.g., audiobooks, technology, products association with literature, etc.).





This overview chapter is mainly about the value of literature as well as the broader genres. I had to stop and think about which genres I was most familiar with and what my own preferences are as far as genre and myself as a reader. I put the genres in rank order of my personal tastes and interests (from childhood on!). T hey are: folklore, non-fiction, realistic fiction, biography, poetry, historical fiction, and fantasy. I definitely have a tendency towards liking to read non-fiction.


My connection is a personal one to the idea of book club and open-ended discussion of literature.  I recently joined a book club; there are 11 of us in the book club—all avid readers. We discuss a book each month. Last time we read a classic text of fiction/fantasy, Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Grey and this time we are reading a different genre altogether—I suppose it would be sort a modern folktale—The Alchemist. What I love about book club is hearing everyone’s unique perspective across different genres. I’ve always heard that readers should read a wide variety of genre and this book, looking ahead, will cover most of the genres. What I feel is missing however, is the use of digital texts and the ways that readers read text online—even high-quality children’s literature.


Questions Posed about the Reading


1. How are book lists of award-winning books determined? I saw those in the front and back cover. What do children think of these award winning books?

2. Do certain types of personality types prefer certain genres over others?

3.  Banned books is a huge topic. I want to look up more about this in the news. What books have been banned lately and why? What was the school/district's response?

4. How can we use a literature-based curriculum and also prepare students for high-stakes testing? (p. 22 topic)


Quotes and Response (Double-Entry Journal)


Quote1 (p. 8) “The defining characteristics of each genre help us recognize the organization of the discipline of literature, provide a framework for talking about books, and help guide our selection.”


Response: This quote is very succinct and helps me as a reader of this text to know to be “on the lookout” for what the defining characteristics/features of each genre are so I can best explain these to students. I feel this knowledge of genre features will really help students with their reading comprehension. It will also help me, as a teacher, to “think aloud” about genre features as I teach writing instruction and use literature as “mentor texts” to help students become better writers.


Quote 2:  (p. 18) “Picture books are not just for small children anymore.”


Response: We all like picture books, especially those with a strong message, great graphics and illustrations, and that entertain us with their language and story. I was always amazed at  my upper-grade students’ interest in picture books. I always made sure to have a wide range of text in my classroom library.


Quote 3: (p. 24) “Electronic Databases”

Response: What technology is out there that serves as resources for knowing more about children’s literature and children’s authors?  A goal for me is to find what all is out there that will help me in my classroom teaching. The internet is a resource and the databases have information for both teachers and students.


Applications to Teaching


  • Have a wide variety of genre in the classroom.
  • Stay current with classic children’s book as well as contemporary titles (Booklist, Publishers Weekly, good websites, e.g., Carol Hurst, etc.)
  • Good posters can be found at the ALA media store (e.g., the “Read” poster with celebrities and their favorite books) for the classroom.
  •          Sharing information about authors will help with writing instruction. Learn more about authors to share this as we learn about mentor texts together.




Rubric for Learning Log (10 points possible for each learning log)


9-10 points—All components of the learning log are present. Reflection demonstrates well developed and in-depth insights of the content and key ideas of the chapter.


7-8 points—All components of the learning log are present. Reflection demonstrates general insights about the content of the chapter but is not as detailed and specific.


5-6—Most components of the learning log are present. Reflection demonstrates limited insight about the content of the chapter but is very general and somewhat skeletal.


1-4 points-Most components of the learning log are present. Reflection demonstrates a superficial understanding about the content of the chapter.



Tentative lecture/topic schedule



Topic and Reading:

Books to Be Read Before Class Session

What’s Due

June 7

Learning about Books, Selecting Books and Historical



Chapter One (textbook)






Begin planning your service project.


Bring your textbook to the first class session.

June 8

Overview of Children’s Literature

·         Personal Value of Literature to Children

·         Aesthetic and Efferent Responses to Literature


Chapter Two (textbook)



(#1) any picture book by Janell Cannon

(#2) any picture book by Kevin Henkes , and

(#3) any of the Frog and Toad or other mini-chapter books by Arnold Lobel (e.g., Owl at Home).



Book Talks   (#1-3)



June 9

A Culturally Diverse Literature Collection

*Start reading chapter three


Pick two books from the following:

1.        In my Family/En mi Familia by Carmen Lomas Garza

2.       Family Pictures/Cuadros de Familia by Carmen Lomas Garza

3.       Uncle Jed's Barbershop by Mitchell, Margaree King and James Ransome

4.       The Bracelet  by Yoshika Uchida


Book Talks (#4-5)



Learning Log #1 (on chapters 1 or 2): upload to Blackboard

June 10

Picture Books

Chapter Three (textbook)


Read all three:

·         Any picture book by Mem Fox

·         Any picture book by Margaret Wise Brown

·         Any picture book by Pat Mora or a book from the Tomas Rivera award winning book list:


Book Talks   (#6-8)


*Service Project—Part 1 written reflection due by 11:55 pm to Blackboard


June 14

Picture Books

Chapter Three (textbook)


Read all three:


·         Any picture book by Patricia Polacco

·         Any picture book by Lois Ehlert

·         Any “postmodern”  picture book (suggestions will be provided in class by David Weisner is a good choice).

Book Talks   (#9-11)


Learning Log #2 to Blackboard


June 15

Poetry and Verse

Chapter Four (textbook)


Read all three:


·         Any book by Jack Prelutsky

·         Hailstones and Halibut Bones

·         Any poetry book by Nikki Giovanni


Book Talks   (#12-14)


Learning Log #3


June 16

Historical Fiction

Chapter Eight (textbook)


Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse OR  Esperanza Rising


Book Talks   (#15)


June 17

Historical Fiction

Chapter Eight (textbook)


Any chapter book by Louise Erdrich


Pick one picture book: Minty: A Story of Young Harriet Tubman OR John Henry by Julius Lester OR Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt


Book Talks   (#16-17)


Learning Log #4


June 21

Biography, Autobiography, and Memoir

Chapter Nine (textbook)


One chapter book:

My Life with the Chimpanzees  by Jane Goodall OR Small Steps: My Life with Polio OR Boy by Roald Dahl OR Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman


One picture book (pick one):

When I Was Young in the Mountains  by Cynthia Rylant and Diane Goode OR another pre-approved memoir picture book.



Book Talks   (#18-19)


Learning Log #5


June 22

Contemporary Realistic Fiction

Chapter Seven (textbook)


One chapter book….

Ida B: . . . and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World by Katherine Hannigan  OR Hatchet by Gary Paulsen OR Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli OR The Circuit by Francisco Jimenez OR The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes


Any picture book by Faith Ringgold (e.g., Tar Beach), Jacqueline Woodson (e.g., Coming on Home Soon, or Alma Flor Ada (must be realistic fiction).


Book Talks   (#20-21)


Learning Log #6


June 23


Chapter Five (textbook)



·         The Rough-Face Girl by Rafe Martin OR a picture book by Joseph Bruchac

·         Any books illustrated by Jerry Pinkney -Some are written by Robert San Souci, Julius Lester, and Gloria Pinkney. Please note that his son, Brian Pinkney, also is an illustrator.



Book Talks   (#22-23)



June 24


Chapter Five (textbook)


**Start reading one of the fantasy chapter books.



Learning Log #7



June 28

Fantasy and Science Fiction

Chapter Six (textbook)


One chapter book: The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer OR The Ear, the Eye and the Arm (Mass Market Paperback by Nancy Farmer OR a noted fantasy book by Roald Dahl (e.g., James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). Do not pick a book you have read before.

Book Talks   (#24)


*Bring printed draft of a polished draft of lesson plan to class. Turn in a copy of your draft to Dr. Semingson in class.

June 29


Chapter Ten (textbook)


·         Any book by Russell Freedman (e.g., Immigrant Kids)

·         Any book by Seymour Simon

·         Any book by Gail Gibbons


Book Talks   (#25-27)



June 30


Chapter Ten (textbook)




Learning Log #8

July 1

Present  about service projects in small groups.


Other topics To Be Announced.

Present Service Projects in small groups. Turn in final written reflection on Service Project


July 5

Digital and visual literacies: children’s literature and technology/graphic novels/comic books.


Please bring examples of graphic novels and also your laptop.


Read three graphic novels appropriate for elementary school students. Titles will be provided in class.

Various websites (TBA)


Book Talks   (#28-30)



July 6

Literature-Based Instruction and Balanced Literacy

Chapter Eleven (textbook)


July 7

Response-Centered Classrooms

Chapter Twelve (textbook)

Learning Log #9

July 8

Wrap-up; share final learning logs


Guest speaker: TBA

Learning Log #10: Synthesize learning across the entire course and future applications to teaching.

Take Home Final Exam is due by or before July 8 at 11:55 pm.

Take Home Final Exam

Submit the take home final exam to Blackboard.