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See our FAQ for more details on how you can join the Book Week celebration.

About

What is Children’s Book Week and how can you join in the celebrations?

Children’s Book Week is the annual celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading.
Established in 1919, Children’s Book Week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Every year, events are held nationwide at schools, libraries, bookstores, homes — wherever young readers and books connect!

The 100th anniversary of Children’s Book Week will take place all year long with a dedicated week of celebrations, April 29 – May 5, 2019, and another week this fall, November 4-10!

Learn more about the 100th anniversary and how to participate all year long here.

Check out our Frequently Asked Questions Section for more information on how to celebrate with us each spring!

Receive emails about all our 100th anniversary plans by signing up for our email list here.

History

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.

Mathiews 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.

2019 Children’s Book Week Highlights:

  • Great collaborations coming. What to expect?
    • Official poster, with activities, illustrated by award-winner Yuyi Morales and inspired by the 2019 slogan, Read Now ● Read Forever. Free posters will be available at all events!
    • KidLit TV’s new CREATOR CORNER – are 100 three-to-five minute videos of children’s book authors and illustrators speaking about their favorite character creations to be released throughout 2019.
    • Spokesperson for the 100th anniversary of Children’s Book Week, Ayesha Curry.
    • An original twelve-artist collaborative poster, to be revealed in stages throughout 2019, with some of the biggest children’s books illustrators.
    • Exclusive new bookmarks by six prominent children’s book illustrators.
    • A new Children’s Book Week Graphic Novel Activity Kit featuring art from amazing children’s graphic novel creators.
    • The Anna Dewdney Read Together Award, a picture book prize in honor of the late author and illustrator.
    • Downloadable event and voting kits, press release templates, and more Media Tools.
    • See all the amazing locations that participated in our Spring week of events, April 29-May 5.
    • A second week of celebrations, November 4-10, which focuses on engaging students at schools, libraries, and after-school programs. 2019 is the first year that two celebrations have been held with a special Educator Kit created just for this week!
    • Check back for more details to come as we unveil them!

More Resources and FAQs

What is Children’s Book Week and how can you join in the celebrations?

Discover information and resources for our year long celebration!

Tons of downloadable bookmarks, activities, and more for 2019 Book Week events!

Press release templates, logos, and more for promoting 2019 Children's Book Week and the Book Awards

Information about our partners.

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