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Foundations of Literacy (Wayne): Locate Children's Books

The University of Akron Wayne College Library

Locating Children's Literature

Need ideas for children's book titles?

Check out guidebooks from the library's Teaching Resources Collection (see some ideas below in the "Helpful Guides to Children's Literature" box) or perform a subject search in the UA Libraries Catalog or OhioLINK catalog for any of the following established Library of Congress subject headings:

  • Picture Books For Children -- Bibliography
  • Picture Books For Children -- Indexes
  • Picture Books for Children -- United States
  • Picture Books for Children -- United States -- Bibliography

Check out award winning children's books:

Locating specific children's book titles:

Once you have identified a specific title you want, perform a title search in the UA Libraries Catalog, the OhioLINK Catalog, or the SearchOhio Libraries Catalog:

  • Use the search box provided below, but change the dropdown to "Title" if you have identified the title you are looking for.
  • Locate the item in the Wayne College Library's collection, or place a hold on the item and select "Wayne College Library" as your pickup location.

Locating children's books on a variety of subjects, topics, or genres:

  • Go to the "Subject Searching" box provided below for ideas on how to search the UA Libraries Catalog for children's books on a topic you're interested in.
  • Go to the "Locating Multicultural Literature" box provided below for ideas on how to locate books about a variety of multicultural or diversity topics.
  • Go to the "Genre (Category) Searching" box provided below for a special shortcut and instructions for searching for children's books by genre.


Books that are cataloged with "juvenile" in the subject headings can range from preschool through high school.  You may perform any of these searches and locate young adult books right alongside children's picture books.  Examine the item descriptions closely.

Helpful Guides to Children's Literature

Search the UA Libraries Catalog for Children's Books

Subject Searching in the UA Libraries Catalog

Start your search at the UA Libraries Catalog.

  • Choose the "Advanced Search" tab.
  • Use the drop-down menu to change the first search field to a subject field search
  • Enter in any of the following, depending on what you're looking for:
    • Juvenile
    • Juvenile fiction
    • Juvenile literature
  • In the second box, use the drop-down menu to select another appropriate field (title, subject) or leave it as "any field"
  • In the search box enter the topic or genre you are looking for (for example, poetry, folk tales, biography, etc.)

Use appropriate Boolean operators and truncation as needed:

  • Join terms with OR to broaden your search results:
    • Example: folklore OR folk tales OR fairy tales
    • Example: biograph* (to locate biography, biographies, biographic)

Look at the full record for each title.

  • Select an individual title by clicking on the title
  • Select the "Full Record" tab to view the summary and subject headings.
  • Look for your keywords displayed in red to determine why your search retrieved this specific item.

Advanced library catalog search for juvenile poetry

Locating Multicultural Literature

Searching for Multicultural / Diversity titles requires some creativity: 

There are currently no genre headings to easily locate multicultural children's literature.  The best approach is to perform a keyword search that identifies the group or culture you are interested in and either limit your results to the children's literature collection or add the additional phrase "AND Juvenile Literature" or "AND Juvenile Fiction" to your search strategy.  Remember to truncate your terms to locate plural endings.

Here are some ideas to try:

  • African American*
  • Asian*
  • Bisexual*
  • Gay*
  • Jew* or Judaism
  • Latino*
  • Lesbian*
  • Mentally Challenged
  • Muslim*
  • India
  • Native American*
  • Pakistan*
  • Physically Challenged
  • Transgender

Here is a sample search strategy:

african american* AND (juvenile literature OR juvenile fiction)

Genre (Category) Searching in the UA Libraries Catalog

Locate children's books by Genre (Category):

Many books in our collections have been assigned to genres or general reading categories (like mysteries or romance in the public library).  However, this is not an exhaustive search as many books have not been cataloged with a genre.  Here is one way to identify some books by genre:

  • Go to the UA Libraries Catalog and select "Advanced and Other Searches"
  • Or follow this shortcut to go to the advanced search directly:
  • Under the "Other Searches" locate the "Genre" search at the end of the page.
  • Enter an established genre category into the search field and then "Search."

Possible genre categories to try: 

  • Autobiographies
  • Bildungsromans (coming of age)
  • Biographies
  • Children's films
  • Christian fiction
  • Comics graphic works
  • Detective and mystery fiction
  • Diaries
  • Fables
  • Fairy tales
  • Fantasy fiction
  • Ghost stories
  • Graphic Novels
  • Historical fiction
  • Horror fiction
  • Humorous fiction
  • Juvenile works
  • Memoirs
  • Poetry
  • Romance fiction
  • Science fiction
  • Short stories
  • War fiction
  • Western stories

From the search results listing, select the "Limit / Sort Search" button

  • Use the drop-down menu to select "Words in the Subject"
  • Enter: Juvenile

Genre search for fairy tales


Screen shot of limiter to find the word "juvenile" in the subject headings

Looking for Children's "Big Books"

Find a list of Big Books:

The Wayne College Library's collection of "Big Books" can be located by performing a special call number search for "Big Book:"

  • Go to the UA Libraries Catalog and select "Advanced and Other Searches"
  • Or follow this shortcut to go to the advanced search directly:
  • Under the "Other Searches" locate the "Number Search"
  • Use the drop-down menu to search for a "Textual" search
  • Enter "Big Book" into the search field and then "Search."

Advanced library catalog search selecting a textual number search for Big Books


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