professornana (professornana) wrote,

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all things to all people

I admit it: I am think-skinned when it comes to criticism of the books I give written. I don't know anyone who is not a trifle sensitive of that matter. After all, each book takes months (years) to draft, revise, and edit. That does not count all of the prewriting: thinking, noting, reflection, planning, etc. So, when I see someone note a failing in one of the books, my heart sinks a little. But then, I square my shoulders, hunker down, and write some more. Right now I am working with Karin Perry on an article; simultaneously, Donalyn Miller and I are working on a book. Add in reviews, blog posts, and the various and sundry items on my To-Do List.

The criticism was for Reading Ladders. The person felt I ignored what school libraries and librarians could do to assist in building ladders and building readers. The thing is: this was a book about kids in a classroom and not about how the school library plays into literacy development. If anyone knows me, they also know I am a strong advocate of school libraries and librarians. I have spent the last 25+ years teaching in an LS program. I have written about and talked about the role of libraries and librarians over and over and over again.

But when it came to writing Reading Ladders, the focus was narrow. Part of the narrowed focus was for economy and part of it was that there are books about libraries and librarians and their role in the process. Another hope I have is that some new voices add to the literature out there, folks with strong backgrounds in libraries and librarianship. I did not make a conscious decision to omit the school library nor the librarian. Instead, I focused on what I know best: supporting developing readers.

One book cannot do it all. One voice cannot be heard above it all. One approach, one pedagogy: these are not one-size-fits-all . Instead, we need a chorus of voices, dozens or hundreds or thousands of books. Maybe I will writ one abut school libraries and librarians. Or maybe YOU will.
Tags: criticism

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