Monday, December 17, 2007

But my child is so advanced....

A couple of good posts on this topic:

I could go on for days about this topic, so it's nice to know that others have thought at length about it, too.

My "rule": Children should read what they like. Will admit to "forbidding" children from checking out both Vanity Fair and Last of the Mohicans; it's never the higher readers who come to the desk with them, it's always someone who doesn't like to read, and those are the two most unexciting books I've ever picked up. I do also censor my collection. I'm not for censoring-- I've helped kids find books at the public library, but I don't want to fight with parents when their children read problem novels for high school students.

That said, I think Alix Flinn's stuff is generally okay for 7th graders, and the occasional 6th.


  1. Vanity Fair. Snore.

    What you do isn't "censorship", really -- it's common sense. Do kids in middle school NEED to read high school level material, with high school level issues and bad language? (Bad language, though, isn't "high school level" -- it's lower than that and to me shows a lack of imagination when used... usually).

    In any case, I'm GLAD, as a parent at your school, that you do limit which books you purchase. They'll have access to other materials elsewhere -- high school or the public work place, book stores, but just because they have access to it doesn't mean it's good literature for them to read. Let their parents be in control of what they choose outside of the school library. When parents entrust their children to schools for education, the parents and schools don't always "agree" with what should be taught (as we all know). I feel, however, that my children's library ventures in your library are "safe" -- I know you make great suggestions to the students who come to you with requests or blank looks ("I don't know what to read!") and I know the materials in your library are, well, acceptible for their age and reading level(s).

    Thanks for all you do!!!

  2. Thanks for the mention, Ms. Yingling! I agree with with your other commenter, to a point. Selection, while it can veer into censoring, is a pretty necessary part of serving kids.

    The trick, I guess, is to know where the line is. And to know the literature. :)