See our FAQ for more details on how you can join the Book Week celebration.
Established in 1919, Children’s Book Week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Every year, young people across the country participate by attending events at schools, libraries, bookstores, celebrating at home, and engaging with book creators both online and in person. The 2021 Children’s Book Week will take place during two dedicated weeks of celebration, May 3-9 and November 8-14!
To learn more about participating this year:
Children’s Book Week originated in the belief that children’s books and literacy are life-changers. In 1913, Franklin K. Matthiews, the librarian of the Boy Scouts of America, began touring the country to promote higher standards in children’s books. He proposed creating a Children’s Book Week, which would be supported by all interested groups: publishers, booksellers, and librarians.
Matthiews enlisted two important allies: Frederic G. Melcher, the visionary editor of Publishers Weekly who believed that “a great nation is a reading nation,” and Anne Carroll Moore, the Superintendent of Children’s Works at the New York Public Library and a major figure in the library world. With the help of Melcher and Moore, in 1916, the American Booksellers Association and the American Library Association sponsored a Good Book Week with the Boy Scouts of America.
In 1944, the newly-established Children’s Book Council assumed responsibility for administering Children’s Book Week. In 2008, Children’s Book Week moved from November to May. At that time, the administration of Children’s Book Week, including planning official events and creating original materials, was transferred to Every Child a Reader, CBC’s charitable arm.
In 2019, the 100th anniversary of Children’s Book week was celebrated.
What is Children’s Book Week and how can you join in the celebrations?
Tons of downloadable bookmarks, activities, and more for 2021 Book Week events.
Promote your 2021 Children's Book Week celebration with these tools.
Participate in the Superpower Challenge all year long!
Information about our partners.