ENGL3430: Literature and Childhood - Maymester (70467)

Bray, Danielle

MTWRF 12:30 PM

Park Hall 139

Course Description

Literature and Childhood is a survey of literature in English that represents children and childhood. To suit the May Session format, this session of the course will be an intensive study of picture books examining their genres, messages, and design and physical construction. Students will perform both critical and creative work throughout the session and yield as their final project a picture book dummy featuring their own, original picture book manuscript; a query letter to a key individual in the children’s publishing industry pitching that manuscript; and a brief reflective essay commenting on what skills they discovered and developed by performing this kind of work.


Required Materials

This semester, the students and I will spend a lot of time finding picture books that speak to us, responding to them in writing, and sharing them aloud with the class. Students are not required to purchase these picture books nor any other texts for the course, though they’re welcome to do so if they prefer. Both the Athens Clarke County Library on Baxter Street and the Curriculum Materials Library in the Aderhold building have collections of picture books students may browse and check out free of charge, and we’ll be visiting the CML during our first week of class. Additional critical readings and other assignment materials will be made available to students also without cost via our eLC course.


Students will need to have access to cardstock, 11X17” paper, glue sticks, tape, pencils, and other art supplies and bookbinding materials of their choice to complete their final book dummy projects. Since no one is likely to need a whole ream of paper or an entire glue stick, etc., students are encouraged to purchase these materials in groups in order to manage costs.


Course Requirements

Your final grade in this course will be based on your completion of the following requirements:

  • Class Participation (incl. Journal Shares)


  • Daily Writing Assignments (incl. Journal entries and Drafts)


  • Weekly Book Shares (3 total)


  • Picture Book Dummy (physical artifact)


  • Query Letter


  • Reflective Essay