Encountering Children's Literature: An Arts Approach / Edition 1

Encountering Children's Literature: An Arts Approach / Edition 1

by Jane M. Gangi
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Encountering Children's Literature: An Arts Approach / Edition 1

Encountering Children's Literature, First Edition

In this vibrant text, Jane M. Gangi gives us a new perspective on how integrating the fine arts and literature fosters the active participation and in-depth understanding that is as important for children and teachers. The heart of the book is a comprehensive treatment of children's literature, with a strong emphasis on multicultural and international literature. This text caters to those who are interested in making reading more inviting to diverse groups with varied learning styles.


  • Unique pedagogy—Each chapter begins with an encounter session that involves all participants: Pantomime; the art of reading aloud; improvisation; transformational drawing and collage; choral reading; readers theater; storytelling; creative movement and tableaux; oral interpretation, role-playing; and, story dramatization in connection with the various genres providing easy reference to students.
  • Emphasis throughout the text on multicultural and international literature and ethnic authors (which helps attain the standards for diversity). Students are urged to read the work of “cultural insiders” and are provided resources for finding and evaluating quality multicultural literature.
  • Unique separate chapter on drama (Ch.6) includes an extensive bibliography of children's literature that the award-winning playwright in residence at New York University, Laurie Brooks, helped develop.
  • Open discussion of children's literature and gender found in no other text address the impact of such issues as the media on girls' and boys' self-image (Ch. 3), and the possible reasons why boys more often than girls become disinterested in reading in the upper elementary grades.
  • Performance-based, field-tested assessments for teacher educators that address National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the International Reading Association and National Council of Teachers of English (IRA/NCTE) standards.
  • The NCATE Program Standards for Elementary Teacher Preparation are addressed throughout the book which will help teacher candidates provide evidence of knowing and having competencies in these standards.
  • A list of hundreds of multicultural authors and illustrators in Appendix D gives students a place to start in their pursuit of learning about less well-known (though of equal quality) authors.
  • Websites listed at the end of all 13 chapters give students additional multicultural sources for books, selection and evaluation of books, and awards, providing easy access to the best and most up-to-date resources.
  • Field-tested over the past several years, ensures a wealth of proven strategies to motivate students.

“It is terrific to use so many older classics and original works. This provides a real sense of history and underscores the value of these works...This is an invaluable resource...&148
Professor Thomas A. Caron, Ph.D., Marshall University Graduate College

“WOW...what a book...This must be the most complete general children's literature text as far as the depth of information and exploration of multicultural children's literature.”
Professor Meggin McIntosh, University of Nevada, Reno

“The choral reading information and practice encounter is wonderful, engaging with lots of implications for further 'vocal paintings'.”
Professor Catherine Kurkjian, Central Connecticut State University

Author Bio:

Jane M. Gangi is an Associate Professor in the Department of Education at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut, where she teaches courses in children's literature, special needs, and foundations. As an arts consultant, she has worked extensively in urban, suburban, and rural areas throughout the Northeast. A former teacher, she taught in the K-8 schools in the areas of literature, the arts, and gifted education.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780205392407
Publisher: Pearson
Publication date: 08/04/2003
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 360
Product dimensions: 7.01(w) x 9.09(h) x 0.45(d)

Table of Contents

Each chapter concludes with “Conclusion,” “Suggested Activities,” “For Further Reading,” “Websites,” and “Awards.”


Foreword by Joseph Bruchac.

Preface and Acknowledgments.

1. Teaching Children's Literature.

About the Encounters.

Encountering Literature Through Narrative Pantomime.

A Passion for Reading.

Diversity and an Arts Approach in Teacher Education.

An Arts Approach in a Technological Society.

Responding to Literature: An Arts Approach to Achieve Engaged Reading.

Research in the Arts.

Theory into Practice: Approaching Performance.

2. An Introduction to Genre and to the History of Children's Literature.

Encountering Literature Through Reading Aloud.

Genre: Spreading the Feast.

Approximating a Picture of the World: Classroom Libraries.

The Emergence of Genre in the History of Children's Literature.

3. Cultural Studies and Children's Literature.

Encountering Literature with the Storytelling Shawl.

Defining Children's Literature.

Mass Media and the Commercialization of Children's Literature.

Gender and Children's Literature.

Diversity and Children's Literature.

Teaching with Diverse Literature.

Guidelines for Selection.

Literary Elements and Criticism.

Critical Theory and Children's Literature.

4. The Picture Book: Linking Word and Image.

Encountering Literature Through the Visual Arts.

History of the Picture Book.

The Picture Book and the Teaching of Reading.

Criticism and Evaluation of the Picture Book.

The Elements, Styles, and Media of the Visual Arts.


5. Poetry: The Music of Language.

Encountering Literature Through Choral Reading.

Choral Reading and Culturally Responsive Teaching.

The Poetry Genre.

History of Poetry and Poetry Timeline.

Poetry, Creativity, and Memorization.

The Elements of Poetic Language.

Forms of Poetry.

Types of Poetry.

Poetry and the Teaching of Reading.

6. Drama: The Art of the Present.

Encountering Literature Through Readers Theater.


Drama Timeline.

The Elements of Drama/Literature.

Classroom Drama: Philosophical Foundations.

Drama as Culturally Responsive Teaching.

Research in Education on Drama.

Drama in the 21st Century: A Venue to Develop.

Responding to Drama.

Encountering Literature Through Story Theater.

7. Folklore: A Global Legacy.

Encountering Literature in a Storytelling Workshop.

The Meaning of Folklore.

The Oral Tradition and the Education of Children.

Storytelling in the Reading Program in a Digital Age.

Definitions and Categories of Folklore.

History of Folklore Collection.

Cross Cultural Distortions of Folklore.

Criticism and Evaluation of Folklore.

Encountering Myth Through Music, Movement, and Tableaux.

8. Informational Books: Finding the Aesthetic.

Encountering Literature Through Discovering Patterns.

The Information Genre.

History of Informational Literature.

Categories of Informational Literature.

Boys and Informational Literature.

Making Invisible Groups Visible.

Criticism and Evaluation of Literature.

Nurturing Individual Interests.

9. Integrated Historical Literature: The Human Dimension.

Encountering Literature Through the Art of Conversation: Literature Circles.


Integrating Historical Literature.

History and Timeline of Realistic Fiction.

Historical Realism: Classics of Children's Literature.

Criticism and Evaluation of Historical Literature.

10. Life's Vocations and Callings: Biography, Autobiography, and Memoir.

Encountering Literature Through Oral Interpretation.

History of Biography and Autobiography.

Authors and Illustrators of Children's Literature.

Value of Biography for Children.

Value of Biography for Future and Practicing Teachers.

Biography and Cultural Responsiveness.

Criticism and Evaluation.

11. Contemporary Realism: Through the Eyes of Others.

Encountering Literature Through Roleplaying.

The Contemporary Realism Genre.

Multicultural Contemporary Realistic Fiction.

The New Realism.

Bleakness in Multicultural Books.


12. Fantasy and Science Fiction: What If?

Encountering Literature Through Metaphor.

The Fantasy and Science Fiction Genres.

Fantasy and Science Fiction Timeline.

Fantasy and Today's Children.

Criticism and Evaluation.

Categories of Fantasy.

13. Celebrations: Understanding Our World.

Encountering Literature Through Story Dramatization.

Celebrations: Literature from Religious Traditions and Cultural Commemorations.

Culturally Responsive Teaching.

Religious Literature in Schools.

Historical Sources of Religious Literature and Timeline.

Historical and Cultural Commemorations.

Universal Celebrations.

Appendix A. Standards and Assessment.

Appendix B. More Professional Literature and Resources.

Appendix C. Children's Literature Bibliographies: A Dessert Menu.

Appendix D. Multicultural and International Authors and Illustrators.


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