Friday, September 30, 2011

Diane comments in the SF Chronicle: Forbid kids to read a particular book and see what happens.

Diane comments in the SF Chronicle (9.28.2011) on the consequences of living in a time and place where reading is/was a punishable offense. Forbidding kids to read certain books might be just the impetus for them to read.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Diane will be at the Sun Valley Idaho Community Library, Wed. October 12,2011 at 6pm.

DIANE W. FRANKENSTEIN, author of the award winning book, “Reading Together: Everything You Need to Know to Raise a Child Who Loves to Read”, believes that children who talk about stories better understand what they read, and children who get more from the books they read, are children who love to read. Book signing to follow talk.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Save November 6, 2011: Diane will be speaking in Dallas, Texas

On Sunday, November 6, 2011 (3:00 to 5:00 p.m.) the PJ Library of Dallas
is hosting an event for adults featuring Diane Frankenstein, award-winning
author of Reading Together — Everything You Need to Know
to Raise a Child Who Loves to Read.
This will be the “kick-off event” for the PJ Library in Dallas.
For more information visit:.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Celebrate Banned Book Week 2011

Banned book week September, 25- October 2, 2011 is one of my all time favorite literary events. Each year I am proud of how many banned or challenged books I count as my favorites. Often it is these very books that change the way I see the world. In my mind, that is a pretty good definition of what makes for a quality book.
Let’s celebrate Banned Book Week with three of my favorite books that illuminate what happens when reading books becomes forbidden. Offering kids books, where reading is forbidden, might be the perfect strategy to turn reluctant readers into ardent readers. Imagine what your life would be like if you lived in a time and place where reading is a punishable offense.
~ Red Scarf Girl:A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution, Ji-Li-Jiang
~ Stone Goddess
, Minfong Ho

~ Fahrenheit 451
, Ray Bradbury
The following story caught my eye and clearly demonstrates that freedom of expression is a right we need to vigilantly guard. 
Mr. Qiu grew up in a Shanghai neighborhood poor in amenities but rich in humanity. "You might not even have [indoor] toilet," he says. "Whatever circumstance . . . [people there] were contented. Most families, they just sit outside, and they would talk: They tell stories, wave their fans—they enjoy life!"
Mr. Qiu loved books, he says, from an early age. "But those years, it could already be dangerous or at least politically incorrect, so my father kind of locked away all the books. But as kid, I had my ways of opening a lock, right? It's really like the forbidden fruit: 'You don't want me to read it? I will read it!' And it was fun."
Mr.Qui is the author of Years of Red Dust: stories Old Shanghai. Forbidding kids to read  certain books might be just the impetus for them to read. Makes perfect sense to me.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Should books for children be scary, silly or sophisticated?

With Banned Book Week (September 24-October1) approaching, I find myself thinking about the benefits of subversive thinkers. Some of our most cherished authors have been rebels who railed against the norms of their day. Most notably in the field of children’s literature, Maurice Sendak, Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein come to mind. They all wrote bestselling children’s stories and they all have new books coming out soon, but the secret to their success is that their writing was once considered inappropriate for children! Once upon a more staid time, the purpose of children’s books was to model good behavior. They were meant to edify and to encourage young readers to be what parents wanted them to be, and the children in their pages were well behaved, properly attired and devoid of tears. Children’s literature was not supposed to shine a light on the way children actually were, or delight in the slovenly, self-interested and disobedient side of their natures. Seuss, Sendak and Silverstein ignored these rules. They brought a shock of subversion to the genre — defying the notion that children’s books shouldn’t be scary, silly or sophisticated. Rather than reprimand the wayward listener, their books encouraged bad (or perhaps just human) behavior. Not surprisingly, Silverstein and Sendak shared the same longtime editor, Ursula Nordstrom of Harper & Row, a woman who once declared it her mission to publish “good books for bad children."

Friday, September 16, 2011

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Diane will speak Wednesday, September 21 at 7:30 p.m. Campus for the San Antonio Jewish Community at 12500 N.W. Military Hwy

Learn best practices for engaging children in their reading. making sure they are getting the most from the books they read.  For More Information: 302-6960 or

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Diane will be in San Antonio,Texas. Tuesday September 20 & 21, 2011

“What is the use of a book, thought Alice, without …conversations? Why Alice is right…a conversation with Diane Frankenstein.” Diane’s presentation will offer tips and strategies that promote literacy to ensure children become the readers they deserve to become. Program 7:30 pm 12500 N.W. Military Hwy. For more Information: 210 302-6960

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What does a giraffe have to do with learning?

Curiosity is our greatest search engine and education should be about keeping one’s curiosity alive and well nourished.  The beginning of a new school year holds much promise for learning, discovery and exploring and an active imagination is the best companion to take along on that journey.  You might wonder what does a giraffe have to do with learning?

Can your imagination stretch further than a giraffe?