Advocating for YA Literature, Webinar Recap: "These Books Create Transformative Moments"
Updated: May 10
by Sarah Hochstetler
Monday evening's Everyday Advocacy webinar hosted by the National Writing Project's Write Now Teacher Studio affirmed what many teachers, librarians, and proponents of student access to young adult literature already know: these books transform lives. Yet, YA literature is being systematically removed from school spaces under the guise of "protecting" kids from harm. We ask, what does the work of everyday advocacy look like in a moment marked by the alarming escalation of book bans and censorship in classrooms and school libraries across the United States? How can stories of YA making a difference for young people--stories shared by both the very authors being challenged and teachers--serve us in our daily advocacy efforts?
Last night we wrestled with these questions in conversation with teachers who hold firmly to the belief that all students deserve access to transformative young adult literature. You can learn from our shared discussion in a few ways:
View a recording of the webinar to gain strategies for opposing bans using the Everyday Advocacy framework. Included in the recording are video testimonials from popular YA authors Dashka Slater, Adrianna Cueva, Matt de la Peña, Kim Johnson, and Willie Edward Taylor Carver Jr., who share stories of the positive impact their writing has on young people.
Access a folder with webinar materials (including the full slide deck with embedded author videos plus the individual author recordings) for use in your professional learning contexts as evidence of the critical needs for books that allow adolescents to see and be seen.
Explore the Opposing Bans section of our site which offers detailed talking points and specific proactive tactics for those who want to champion the right to read diverse and YA literature.
Become a member of NWP's Write Now Teacher Studio (it's free!) and join the Everyday Advocacy group to engage in dialogue about how we can shift the narrative in literacy education, which includes resisting censorship.
If you or someone you know may be interested in sharing a Teacher Story or joining us for a Teacher Chat about the day-to-day work of everyday advocacy, please contact us.