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ENGL 2630 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

ENGL 2630 - Literature for Children

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

This course is a historical survey of literature for children with special attention given to literature for pre-school and elementary years. Genres or types studied include picture books, fiction, traditional literature, nonfiction and poetry. The course does not fulfill the general education requirement. It is primarily intended for Early Childhood Education or Elementary Education majors.

Course Outcomes:

To understand the criteria for the major awards for children's literature, particularly the Caldecott Medal and the Newbery Medal.
To be able to trace the history of literature for children.
To evaluate a book for young children.
To define literary terms.
To search and locate literary activities for use in the pre-school and/or elementary classroom on the Internet.
To recognize how fiction can teach valuable life lessons.
To distinguish between realistic fiction and fantasy.
To recognize how traditional literature reflects values of a particular culture.
To compare variants of folktales from different cultures.
To recognize the impact of Greco-Roman and Norse mythologies on American culture.
To evaluate poetry for children and recognize uses for the classroom.
To incorporate nonfiction in the pre-school and/or elementary classroom.
To explore methods for dealing with censorship issues in the classroom. 

Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

ENGL 1010

Course Topics:

Topic 1 Course Orientation and overview of literature for children. A brief look at literary awards given to authors and illustrators of literature for children. A brief look at web sites and periodicals for children. A quick explanation of assignments.

Topic 2 History of Children's literature--How children's literature has developed and changed over the years. You will explore folktales, legends, fables, and myths and understand how traditional lit influences contemporary culture

Topic 3 A look at the study of literature. You will learn literary terms and how they are used in the various genres (types) of books that we will be reading. You will learn to look for and appreciate the importance of the authors’ use of literary elements.

Topic 4 We will explore books for the very young as well as picture storybooks for all age groups. You will be assigned picture books to review.

Topic 5 Modern Fantasy--You will explore modern fantasy and science fiction and choose one book from a reading list to read, discuss, and write a book report.

Topic 6 Realistic Fiction--You will explore Contemporary Realistic Fiction and Historical Fiction. We will discuss how to use this genre in the classroom. You will choose an example of each genre from a reading list for discussion and book reports.

Topic 7 You will learn to choose poetry for children and explore ways to use poetry in the classroom.

Topic 8 We will look at both nonfiction and biography for children. You will choose one book of each type to read and write a report. 

Specific Course Requirements:

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

There are no additional materials required for the class. Books for reviews or reports may be checked out of libraries or purchased individually according to student preference. Folktales may be found online; I will be furnishing URLs. 

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:

Chapter Quizzes There are a total of five quizzes over material in the text and in your Book Notes. Each will be available to you at the appropriate times. Again, check the Calendar or Assessments for availability. It is OK to use your text while taking the quizzes, but time limits will be set, so, you should be familiar with the material before taking the quiz. You will have only one (1) attempt.

Novel Quizzes - Quizzes on the novels chosen for Novel Experiences may be found in the quiz section of the class. Availability dates will be posted there as well as on the calendar. You will have only one (1) attempt at each of the quizzes. You will choose the quiz you need from the available quizzes for each Novel Experience. You need to take only one quiz for each Novel Experience book you read. Watch for posted dates on the Calendar and in Assessments.

Final Exam - The Final Exam is proctored and you must make the arrangements for taking the exam. A portion will come from quizzes you have taken over information in the text and Book Notes. Discussion questions will be based on what you have learned from completing Picture Book Reviews and Novel Experiences. 

Grading Procedures:

Grading your papers and tests will take into account the following:
Comprehension: How well you understand and utilize material gained from the text.

Content of Reports: It is not sufficient simply to state your view and then fail to give an adequate explanation or reason for it (in other words, never simply state “I believe X” and leave it at that). Do not simply tell me what you believe; tell me why you believe it. Part of your grade will depend on how well you use examples from your reading to support and to justify your position.

Clarity: How clear the paper is in presenting your position. Be specific in your statements (avoid vague generalities). Organize your paper according to specified guidelines. 

Style: How well the paper is written. Proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation are all important. 

Chapter Tests (5 Tests)200/1000
Novel Experiences (3 Novel reports)150/1000
Picture Book Reviews ( 5 Reviews)150/1000
Website/Periodical Assignment100/1000
Traditional Literature50/1000
Poetry Assignment50/1000
Final Exam50/1000

Special Note - You have a total of 1000 points. Your grade will be determined by adding your earned points and calculating the percentage of 1000. Therefore, an A would be 90% and up, a B would be 80- 89%, etc. 

Grading Scale:

I = Incomplete. Given at the instructor’s discretion to students who have not fulfilled all course requirements at the end of the grading period. The “I” grade counts as an “F” both in computing the GPA and for purposes of satisfying course prerequisites. The deadline for removing the Incomplete is determined by the instructor, but must be no later than two weeks before the end of the next semester. Exception: Candidates for graduation who receive an “I” grade during the semester prior to their final term must remove the Incomplete within the first two weeks of their final semester. NOTE: If course requirements are not satisfied by the deadline, the “I” grade is changed to “IF” on the student’s transcript.

W = Withdraw. Student has withdrawn prior to the drop deadline. Not calculated in GPA. 

Assignments and Projects:

This is a list of all assignments for this course. The assignments are organized by weeks. Assignments are more fully explained on the topic pages.

This schedule is a plan for Spring Semester. Also, specific dates of availability of assignments may be found under the Drop Box and Quizzes. Check those places regularly. 

Week DueTypeDescriptionPoints toward Final Grade
1Introductory Discussions and How to begin. Website/PeriodicalDiscussion-Topics are found in Discussions100/1000
1Chapters 1 and 9 in Russell Literature for Children  

Traditional Literature

Quiz on Traditional Lit. and Chapters 1 and 9 in Russell







3Read Chapters 3-7 in Russell  
3Review and evaluate Picture BooksPicture Book Review30/1000
4Continue Picture BooksPicture Book Review30/1000
4Picture BooksPicture Book Review30/1000
4Picture BooksPicture Book Review30/1000
5Last PBR DuePicture Book Review30/1000
6Review Chapter 3 and read Chaper 10 in Russell and the Book Notes on FantasyDiscussion 
6Reading Fantasy novel  
7Fantasy Novel ExperienceReport, discussion50/1000
7Test on Fantasy 40/1000
8Chapter 11 in Russell and book notesDiscussion 
9Historical Novel ExperienceDiscussion 
9Historical Fiction Novel ExperienceDiscussion50/1000
9Historical Fiction Test 40/1000
10Chapter 11 in Russell and book notesDiscussion 
11Contemporary Realistic Fiction Novel Experience 50/1000
11Test on Contemporary Realistic Fiction 40/1000
12Read Chapter 8 in Russell 50/1000
13Read Chapter 12 in Russell and book notesDiscussion 
15Biography/Nonfiction Report 50/1000
*All Outstanding assignments  

Final Exam (Proctored)

Make your appointments early

Final Assessment50/1000
Class Participation:

Students are required to participate in discussion with other students. You will find topics under the Discussions heading. You should post to each regular topic a minimum of two (2) times. Postings to Novel Experience Discussions require at least two (2) postings. 

Late Policy:

Check the calendar for assignment due dates. Any changes will be posted there as well. 

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on December 4, 2017