Background Resources on Environmental Literature for Teachers and Scholars

Compiled by Dr. Tina L. Hanlon

Ferrum College

See also
Science 141 and 143: Humans Within Ecosystems and Our Home/Our Habitat
Nature and the Environment in Appalachian Literature, bibliography in AppLit
Picture Books and the Environment
Appalachian Cluster of general education courses at Ferrum College

Alt, Laura Danielle DeSutter. “Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum: Using Young Adult Books to Teach Science.” Virginia English Bulletin 44.2 (1994): 131-36.

Arnosky, Jim.

Jim Arnosky's Outdoor Journal. Web site of the author of the Crinkleroot series and other children's books about the outdoors.

Jim Arnosky Teacher Resource FileInternet School Library Media Center, James Madison University.

Cherry, Lynne.

Lynne Cherry. Web site of the author and illustrator of many children's books about the environment.

Lynne Cherry Teacher Resource File. Internet School Library Media Center, James Madison University.

Children’s Literature Association Quarterly 19 (Winter 1994-5). Special section on Ecology & the Child. Essays that discuss ecocriticism and various children's books.

Clapp-Itnyre, Alisa. "Educating about the Environment?: What's 'Endangered' about the Environmental Picture Book?" Paper presented at Children's Literature Association Conference, Wyoming Seminary, PA, June 16, 2002. This paper criticizes environmental picture books that are too pedantic (often boring or heavy-handed), too sentimental, or apolitical. Two of the oldest books from the environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s, Dr. Seuss's The Lorax and Peet's The Wump World, are more effective in generating reader interest and conveying explicit messages about ecological problems.

Creany, Ann. “Environmental Literature Books: Books That Preach and Books That Teach.” Journal of Children’s Literature 20 (1994): 16-22.

Earth Day/Environmental Books. List of books for children and young adults, with brief overviews. Dec. 2004.  Johnson County Library (Kansas).

Elder, John. Imagining the Earth: Poetry and the Vision of Nature. 2nd ed. Athens: U of GA Press, 1996. Discussion of poetry as a window into environmental consciousness.

Environmental Education Resources for Teachers. Waste Management and Research Center. Library and Clearinghouse. WMRC Library Reference Guides. Champaign, IL, 2002. Extensive online bibliography/webliography of educational resources on many environmental issues, including periodical references and tips for further research.

George, Jean Craighead. “Taking Care of Our Planet through Books.” The Horn Book Magazine. March-April 1994. 170-76. Article by a noted writer of children's fiction and nonfiction about the environment.

Jean Craighead George. Web site of the author of many novels and pictures books with environmental themes.

Jean Craighead George Teacher Resource File. Internet School Library Media Center, James Madison University.

Glotfelty, Cheryl and Harold Fromm. The Ecocriticism Reader: Landmarks in Literary Ecology. Athens: U of GA Press, 1996. Anthology of essays.

The Great Smoky Mountains Natural History Association Bookstore lists many kinds of books about the Smoky Mountains and Appalachia, with cover illustrations and purchasing information.

Hanlon, Tina. “The Descendants of Robinson Crusoe in North American Children’s Literature.” Congress of the International Research Society for Children’s Literature. York, UK: 23 Aug. 1997. Essay showing how views of the protagonist's relationship with the environment has changed in modern survival literature.

Hanlon, Tina and Judy Teaford. “Never Too Old for Picture Books.” Virginia English Bulletin 46 (Fall 1996). 7-20. Article on using picture books with older readers from junior high to college in classes on writing, literature, and environmental science.

"Haley, Gail." Something About the Author. Vol. 43. Ed. Anne Commire. Detroit: Gale, 1986. 101-106. Contains discussion with Haley of her ecological picture book Noah's Ark.

Hiassen, Carl. Hoot Walden Media's web site about the film, based on Hiassen's ecological thriller set in Florida, contains film clips and other resources about the book and film.

Hogan, Kathleen. Eco-Inquiry: A Guide to Ecological Learning Experiences for the Upper Elementary/Middle Grades. Institute of Ecosystem Studies, 1994.

The John Burroughs Association, Winners of the Young Reader Award. List of children's books. "The Association publicly recognizes well written and illustrated natural history publications."

Leopold, Aldo. A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There. Illus. Charles W. Schwartz. NY: Oxford UP, 1949.

The Lion and the Unicorn: A Critical Journal of Children’s Literature 19 (Dec. 1995). Special issue on Green Worlds: Nature and Ecology.

Meeker, Joseph W. The Comedy of Survival: In Search of an Environmental Ethic. 2nd ed. Los Angeles: Guild of Tutors Press, 1980. Essays on literature and ecology.

Merritt, Rob. Writing Nature in Appalachia - a web site by an English Professor at Bluefield College, with web links on nature writing in general, organizations and resources. Sponsored by the Appalachian College Association Virtual Center.

Miller, G. Tyler, Jr. Sustaining the Earth: An Integrated Approach. 5th ed. Brooks/Cole Pub., 2001. A textbook introduction to environmental science.

Murdock, Kath and Joreen Hendry. Ideas for Environmental Education in the Elementary Classroom. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1994.

National Library for the Environment. National Council for Science and the Environment. Washington, D. C. "A universal, timely, and easy-to-use single-point entry to environmental information and data for the use of all participants in the environmental enterprise." The section Environmental Education Programs and Resources contains "categorized & annotated links to 2,926 environmental resources."

Ross, Carolyn, ed. Writing Nature: An Ecological Reader for Writers. New York: St. Martins, 1995. Anthology for college teaching.

Rous, Emma Wood. Literature and the Land: Reading and Writing for Environmental Literacy, 7-12. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook/Heinemann, 2000. Includes seven teaching units for a course called Literature and the Land. Lists of resources for students and teachers are given in every chapter. Appendices provide information on exercises, journal entries, environmental games, organizations and websites, and additional readings.

Russell, David L. “The Pastoral Influence on American Children’s Literature.” The Lion and the Unicorn 18 (1994): 121-29.

Saul, Wendy and Sybille A. Jagusch. Vital Connections: Children, Science, and Books. Papers from a 1986 Symposium sponsored by the Children's Literature Center (Library of Congress). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1991. Essays by science writers for children, critical responses, and discussions of classroom and libraries, by editors, teachers, and educational researchers. The Authors section includes Patricia Lauber, Laurence Pringle, Seymour Simon, Vicki Cobb, Jean Craighead George, and Ira Flatow. One of the critical responses is an interview with Barbara Fenton, science book editor.

Schwartz, Elaine G. “Thinking Globally, Acting Locally: Fostering Ecological Literacy through Children’s Picture-Books.” Journal of Children’s Literature 21 (1995): 49-56.

Seymour Simon. Web site of the author of many nonfiction books for children about the earth and science.

Seymour Simon Teacher Resource File. Internet School Library Media Center, James Madison University.

Somers, Albert B. and Janet Evans Worthington. Response Guides for Teaching Children’s Books. Urbana, IL: NCTE, 1979.


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