Activities, stories and more to help you celebrate Children’s Book Week

It's the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country

Children's Book Week is Nov. 7-13.
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I love reading. I’ve loved reading since I can remember because I love getting lost in another person’s story or a world from a different time period. When I was a child, I challenged myself to take on books above my reading level, which is how I ended up reading John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath” as a seventh grader (maybe just a bit too far above my reading level).

As a mom, I’ve worked to instill the love of reading in my kids by filling our home with books and making a point to read to (or now with) kids at bedtime as well as throughout the day whenever possible. It’s been interesting to watch what stories different kids gravitate toward and which ones remain perennial favorites (I’m looking at you “Llama, Llama” series). We also frequent the library as often as possible or re-read the books we love.

This week marks Children’s Book Week , an annual celebration of books and the joy of reading, according to . It’s been celebrated since 1919, making it the longest running literacy initiative in the United States. That’s pretty cool. I didn’t know anything about it until recently, but I’m looking forward to participating and encouraging my kids to nurture the joy of reading as much as possible, not only this week but beyond. You can download a poster and other helpful resources such as bookmarks, challenges, kits and more on the website . There's also a fun challenge that will get you and your kids talking about what books they enjoy reading as well as where and how they enjoy reading . Chances are you'll discover something interesting about your kids, and maybe even your own reading habits.

If you're still looking for a way to celebrate Children's Book Week, here are some great stories, some even written by local authors!

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"Not Quite Snow White" is about a young girl named Tameika who discovers that her unique character traits make her the perfect person to play Snow White. The story is full of beautiful illustrations and great messages about diversity and different bodies.


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"No Hugs!" features a little girl named Zara who loves hugs but is surprised to learn her friend doesn't, highlighting the importance of bodily consent and physical boundaries. Plus, it's written by an NDSU professor, so you can snag a copy at the NDSU Bookstore, Zandbroz as well as online.

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"Prairie Princess" by Forum columnist Jessie Veeder is a child's ode to the land she loves. If you've ever grown up on a farm, visited a farm, or just appreciated the beauty of nature around you, you and your children will love the story and gorgeous illustrations created by a western North Dakota artist.


"Storm Warning" is a middle-grade historical fiction novel about the historic 1997 Red River flood. Set in Ada, Minnesota, the main character is a 12-year-old boy who shows great maturity in the middle of a natural disaster so many of us remember so well.


"A Little Round Panda on the Big Blue Earth" tells the story of how important every single being's place is in the world through vivid illustrations. It's the second book in local author Tory Christie's "Big Blue Earth" series.


"Brave Like Mom" tells the story of a little girl watching her mom battle illness and realizing how strong and brave and fierce her mother is in the midst of a terrible struggle. Young readers will learn empathy and compassion as well as the fact that being brave doesn't mean you aren't ever scared, an important life lesson for us all.

Happy reading, and have fun celebrating Children's Book Week!

Danielle Teigen has a bachelor's degree in journalism and management communication as well as a master's degree in mass communication from North Dakota State University. She has worked for Forum Communications since May 2015, first as a digital content manager before becoming the Life section editor and then deputy editor. She recently moved back to her hometown in South Dakota, where she works remotely for Forum Communications as managing editor of On the Minds of Moms.
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