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D. Hiden Ramsey Library, University of North Carolina at Asheville

Children's and Young Adult Literature: Thematic Guides

Books for Lessons

Integrating literature in the content areas

Where can you find books about children's lives in Colonial America for a social studies class?

Need books about the Civil Rights Movement for a 9th grade history lesson?

You're teaching a science unit and would like to integrate literature, maybe poems.  How do you find appropriate titles?

Identify books for lessons by searching electronic sources (library catalog, website) and printed thematic guides.

Key Resources

Thematic Guides / Bibliographies

Books on the list below provide access to juvenile books by theme or by broad subject. Each book has a subject index to titles, or arranges titles by themes. Often plot summaries, reviews or brief annotations are included. Thematic guides are excellent sources for locating books for integration of literature in the content areas. 

Generally, books of this type are shelved in reference sections PN 1009 and Z 1037. Look on these shelves for additional guides or titles recently acquired.

Click the tab “Multicutural Resouces” for bibliographies and thematic guides to multicultural titles.
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1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up  (REF Z1037 . A252 2009)

A Guide to Children's Books About Asian Americans.  (REF E 184 .O6 B57 1995)

A to Zoo Subject Access to Children’s Picture Books. (REF Z 1037 .L715)

Adventuring With Books: A Booklist for Pre-K -6.  (REF Z 1037 .N346 1999)

 American Library Association.  60 Years of Notable Children's Books.  (Ref Z 1037 .S59 2003x)

An Annotated Bibliography of Historical Fiction for the Social Studies. (Ref D 16.2 .S55)

An Index to Historical Fiction for Children and Young People, 1994.  (Ref PR 830 .H5 B15)

Beacham’s Guide to Literature for Young Adults. (REF PN 1009 .A1 B43 1989 Vols. 1-5)

Best Books for Children: Preschool through Grade 6 (REF 1037 .G48 2006)

Best Books for High School Readers (Ref Z1039 .G55 2004)

Best Books for Middle School and Junior High Readers  (Ref Z1037 .G482 2004)

Beyond Picture Books:  Subject Access to Best Books for Beginning Readers (REF PN 1009 .A1 B78)

Children’s Catalog. (REF  Z1037 .C5443 18th ed.2001) Updated with annual supplements.

Colonial America in Literature for Youth. (REF E188.B1 L69 2003) 

Discoveries and Inventions in Literature for Youth: A Guide and Resource Book.(REF Z 1037  .L93 2004)

E for Environment: An Annotated Bibliography of Children’s Books with Environmental Themes.(REF PN 1009 .A1 Z973)

Eyeopeners II: Children’s Books to Answer Questions About the World Around Them. (REF Z1037 .K598 1995)

Great Books for Boys: More than 600 Books for Boys 2 to 14. (REF 1037 .O24 1998)

Fantasy Literature for Children and Young Adults (REF Z1037 .L97 2005)

The Horn Book Guide to Children’s and Young Adult Books, 1989 -   (REF Z1037 .H67) Biannual

Neal-Schuman Guide to Recommended Children's Books and Media for Use with Every Elementary Subject

(REF Z1037 .M2865 2002)

Subject Index to Poetry for Children and Young People. (REF PN 1023 .S6)

World Historical Fiction: An Annotated Guide to Novels for Adults and Young Adults. (Ref PN 3377.5 .H57 B13 1999)