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LIT 321 Children's Literature: How to Find Juv Books

How to Find Books

Locating Material: 
Searching the library website is a great option for finding available material. Using the child's interests and reading level can help you find suitable and engaging material. 

For example, you are working with a student named Bryan, a 7-year-old who is interested in maps, flags, and geography. We can use this information to locate books on the topic. 

Start a Search with one Keyword:

Narrow the Results:

After searching, you can use the refined results on the left-hand side to select the library location for the Juvenile collection; you can also narrow your search using the other filters, for example, by subject, to find more specific results.

Explore Your Results: 

Review the results of your search to see what books best suit the child's developmental needs. You may need to explore the shelves, too, so remember that items on the same shelf tend to be on a similar topic. Click here to explore the search above to see what book may best suit Bryan.

Try Another Search: 

If you don't see something that fits, try another search with other keywords or remove some of the filters to widen the results.

Matching a Child's Interest with a Book

Try thinking about what the child is interested in: 

Look for topics or concepts that the child finds interesting and look for books on those topics.

  • Animals – farm, pets, safari, insects
  • Ocean - fish
  • Sports
  • Community Helpers – firemen, doctors, police officers, teachers
  • Transportation – trains, cars, motorcycles
  • Construction - trucks, diggers, movers
  • Music
  • States, Countries, Geography
  • Space
  • Characters - from TV, movies, or other books
  • History

Ask Good Questions

What's your favorite book/movie/show?
What do you like about it? 


Matching a Child's Developmental Level with a Book

Think about the Child's Grade Level

Below are two websites that can help you explore the various reading levels of childhood development. 

  • Five Stages of Reading Development
    • the emerging pre-reader (typically between 6 months to 6 years old);
    • the novice reader (typically between 6 to 7 years old);
    • the decoding reader (typically between 7 - 9 years old);
    • the fluent, comprehending reader (typically between 9 - 15 years old); and
    • the expert reader (typically from 16 years and older).
  • Reading Skills at Different Ages
    • Lists various milestones that a reader may fall into throughout their development. 
    • Remember that everyone develops at different ages, and these milestones are only guides; recognizing them can help know what books may fit best for the child. 

Think about the Child's Reading Level and evaluate the book's content for: 

  • The Text Structure - How the book is written, length, and format (are there images, graphics, or illustrations).
  • Themes - Is the content or theme of the book asking questions or addressing big ideas beyond the child's age range? 
  • Complex Sentences - What is the structure of the text like? 
  • Vocabulary Words and Phrases  
  • Illustrations

Need More Help?

Need More Help? 

You are always welcome to check with the front desk for help locating specific titles; if you need assistance searching for material or help at any point in the research process, you can set up an appointment to meet with a librarian here: