LIBR 268-01
LIBR 268-10
History of Youth Literature
Summer 2011 Greensheet

Mrs. Melba Tomeo
Cell: 724-421-5423
Virtual Office Hours: By appointment, at your convenience

Greensheet Links
Textbooks and Readings
Course Requirement
iSchool eBookstore

This course will be available on D2L on Wednesday, June 1. You will be enrolled into the site automatically. I will send more information about course access as we approach this date through MySJSU.

Course Description

The history of literature for children and teens from its earliest examples to today's current trends, including how childhood has changed over the years, the influence of culture on those changes, and on the materials created for children and teens.  

Course Prerequisites: LIBR 200 required.

Course Objectives

Student Learning Outcomes
 In the process of completing The History of Youth Literature, students will:

  • Identify literature written for children during major historical time periods;
  • Discuss the purpose of children's literature in the social pattern;
  • Describe the images of childhood as revealed in children's literature;
  • Identify authors, illustrators and publishers who have contributed to milestones in children's and young adult literature;
  • Describe various genres and literary movements in children's literature;
  • Identify historical children's and young adult literature from different ethnic and cultural perspectives;
  • Explore the historical use of children's literature in educational settings;
  • Discuss trends, technology and controversies affecting contemporary children's and young adult literature.

LIBR 268 supports the following MLIS Core Competencies:

  •  recognize the social, cultural and economic dimensions of information use;
  • use the basic concepts and principles related to the creation, evaluation, selection, acquisition, preservation and organization of specific items or collections of information;
  • understand the nature of research, research methods and research findings; retrieve, evaluate and synthesize scholarly and professional literature for informed decision-making by specific client groups;
  • evaluate programs and services on specified criteria; and
  • contribute to the cultural, economic, educational and social well-being of our communities.

Course Requirements

Required Home Computing Environment:

Familiarity with D2L Course Management Software:

Completion of Assignments:

  • Readings:  There is no way to avoid a lot of reading in a children's literature course.  Each week, you will be responsible for textbook readings, selected article readings, and at least one children's book representative of unit topics and themes.  An online lecture will be provided by your instructor. 

  • Quick Writes:  "Quick writes" are informal observations and reflections based on assigned weekly activities, 1-2 pages in length.  (150 points, 1/3 of your final grade)

  • Discussion Boards:  Discussion boards are a very important part of an online class.  You will be participating in at least one major discussion for each unit of study and responding to your classmates’ posts.  The Recently Read discussion board will provide an opportunity to share your historical literature selections.  (180 points, 1/3 of your final grade)
  • Final Project: TBD by class demographics and discussion
    (150 points, 1/3 of your final grade)
  • I reserve the right to make reasonable changes to the assignments and course schedule, but will not do so without notifying you.

Course Calendar


Unit Topic

June 6-12    

Once Upon A Time: An Introduction
Text:  Pavonetti, Chapter 1
Literature:  A Neglected Classic from The Top 100
Discussion: Pleased to Meet You!

June 13-19

The Timeline: A History of Youth Literature
Text:  Pavonetti, Chapters 2, 4
Literature:  Historical Example, pre-1900
Quick Write: Attic Adventures
Discussion: Connect the Dots

June 20-
June 26

Mother's Little Darling: A History of Childhood
Text:  Pavonetti, Chapters 15, 16
Literature:  Family Life Example, post-1900
Quick Write: Family Affairs
Discussion: What Do You Value?

June 27-
July 3

Keeping It Real: A History of Teen Lit
Text:  Cart, Chapters 1-5, 10
Literature:  Problem Novel
Quick Write: Teenagers in the Mist
Discussion: Meeting the Challenge

July 5-10

Series-ly, To Be Continued: A History of Series Literature
Text:  Cart, Chapter 7
Literature: Series Book
Discussion: Series vs. Serious

July 11-17 

The Moral of the Story: A History of Youth Literature in the Classroom
Text:  Pavonetti, Chapters 9, 10, 19
Literature:  Non-Fiction, Poetry, Biography
Quick Write: Virtual Visit
Discussion: Goodbye, Moby Dick

July 18-24

Mirrors and Windows: A Multicultural History of Youth Literature
Text:  Pavonetti, Chapters 11, 12, 13, Cart, Chapters 9, 11
Literature:  Multicultural Example
Quick Write: Bookstore Inventory
Discussion: Eyes on the Prize

July 25-31

They Called Me Snow White But I Drifted: A Critical Analysis of Youth Literature
Text: Pavonetti, Chapters 5, 6
Literature:  Two Versions of the Same Story
Quick Write: Review the Reviewers
Discussion: Site Seeing

August 1-7

Back to the Future: An Exploration of Today's Youth Literature
Text: Cart, Chapters 12, 13, 14
Literature:  Graphic Novel or Ebook
Discussion: Paper or Plastic?

August 8-12

And They All Lived Happily Ever After: Final Projects

Textbooks and Readings

Required Textbooks:

  • Cart, M. (2010). Young adult literature: From romance to realism. ALA. Available through Amazon: 0838910459 arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Pavonetti, L. (2003). Children's Literature Remembered: Issues, Trends, and Favorite Books. Libraries Unlimited. Available through Amazon: 0313320772. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at The Late Drop Policy is available at Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7,, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at to establish a record of their disability.

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