AFT New Mexico is spending this week celebrating banned books and our fervent support of ensuring all students and Americans have the freedom to read what they choose!
As educators, we know protecting our students’ right to read is a value we all share.
To support our week of celebrations, we are doing the following:
1: We will kick off each day with an e-mail full of information about banned books, resources for educators, history around efforts to ban books, and many resources you may use in your own teaching.
2: We are also launching a contest for AFT NM members to share their displays, bulletin boards, lesson plans, or any other educational tool you are utilizing to share the love of reading with your students. (More info below on the contest!)
3: We are collecting photos of members and elected leaders in New Mexico to highlight individuals’ favorite Banned Books. We will share those stories throughout the week on AFT NM social media sites.
4: We are providing social media graphics that can be downloaded and shared on your own personal social media pages – one for educators specifically and another for community members to show their support for reading Banned Books.
Our week of celebrating Banned Books will be capped by the announcement of winners of our 1st Banned Books Week contest.
We hope you will consider how you can participate in this week dedicated to the freedom and joy of reading, and check your e-mails throughout the week for graphics, resources, and educational materials that celebrate reading!
President, AFT New Mexico
We encourage you to enter our Banned Books Week contest! The contest will be launched on October 1 (today) to coincide with the beginning of Banned Books Week and will be open to any AFT NM member to submit their entry.
Be creative and think outside the box! Entries could be a lesson plan, library display, or other educational activity that ties into the week and its mission. The best submissions will receive gift cards that can be used to purchase books, resources, and materials on First Book Marketplace.
The first-place winner will receive a $1,500 gift certificate to First Book Marketplace. The second-place winner will receive a $1,000 gift certificate to First Book Marketplace. The third-place winner will receive a $500 gift certificate to First Book Marketplace.
Winners will be announced at the conclusion of Banned Books Week.
Banned Books Week Coalition member National Coalition Against Censorship is cosponsoring a new essay contest for high school students! NCAC is joining forces with SCBWI Impact and Legacy Fund for the contest. Entries are due May 10, 2023.
Students age 14 to 18 are eligible for the contest. Entrants should write a 250 word essay on the topic “How a Banned Book Changed My Life.” Essays can be submitted online using this form or by emailing them to Gianmarco@ncac.org. Deadline for entry is May 10, 2023.
A panel of judges will select two winners, who will receive $250 credit for Kindle or Apple Books and will have the opportunity to read their essays aloud via Zoom at the 2023 SCBWI Impact and Legacy Fund Childrens’ Book Changemakers conference at 7:00 p.m. ET on June 8, 2023. Additionally, the two winners will have the opportunity to interview (and be interviewed by) acclaimed banned author Ellen Hopkins (Crank) as a part of the conference program.
Do you have a burning question (about censorship) for New York Times bestselling author and Banned Books Week Honorary Chair Jason Reynolds?! If you’re a teen or an educator, a librarian, or a bookseller who works with teens, now’s your chance! The Banned Books Week Coalition wants to include you in our Facebook Live event with Jason Reynolds at 1:00 p.m. EDT on September 28!
Send us your questions using this form, and they could be included in our conversation with Jason Reynolds! We’re accepting text and video submissions, and those that we include in the event will receive a copy of Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks or a Banned Books Week poster, signed by the author himself! Submissions are due by 5:00 p.m. EDT on September 17, 2021.
See who’s included when we join Honorary Chair Jason Reynolds on Facebook Live, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EDT on September 28, 2021!
You can celebrate the ways in which books unite us throughout Banned Books Week, September 26 – October 2, 2021! The Banned Books Week Coalition is here to support your celebration of reading, with programming ideas, promotional materials, and other resources! Visit bannedbooksweek.org or follow @BannedBooksWeek on Twitter to get the latest Banned Books Week and censorship news.
How To Submit
Contestants can submit questions in text or video format using this form. Video submissions should be limited to 30 seconds or less (shorter is better). The contest is free to enter.
Contestants must be either living in the U.S. or its territories (but need not be citizens) and must be 13 – 20 years of age on September 28, 2021. Educators, librarians, and booksellers who work with teens ages 13 – 20 are also encouraged to submit videos with their classes and/or book clubs.
Submissions are due by 5:00 p.m. EDT on September 17, 2021.
Individuals whose questions are selected for inclusion in the Facebook Live event will receive a copy of Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks, signed by Jason Reynolds!
Submissions from a class or book club chosen to be included in the event will be awarded with a Banned Books Week poster, signed by Jason Reynolds.
All questions (text and video) should be submitted no later than 5:00 p.m. EDT, Friday, September 17.
Videos should be submitted via YouTube link. Video submissions cannot exceed 30 seconds in length. Shorter submissions are encouraged.
Questions should address the theme of Banned Books Week (“Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.”), intellectual freedom, censorship, and/or works by Jason Reynolds. Be creative!
Individual contestants must be age 13 – 20 on the day of the Facebook Live event (September 28, 2021).
Questions may be submitted by classes or book clubs and their adult supervisors as long as the teens involved are age 13 – 20 on the day of the Facebook Live event (September 28, 2021).
Contestants must live in the United States or its territories. U.S. citizenship is not required for entry.
Questions selected for inclusion will be shown during the Facebook Live event on September 28 (for video submissions) and the contestant’s first name, city, and state will be shared during the event (for both text and video submissions). For class or book club submissions, the contestants’ school, library, or bookstore, as well as city and state, will be identified.
Prizes: A combined maximum of ten (10) novels signed by Jason Reynolds (for individual contestants) OR Banned Books Week posters signed by Jason Reynolds (for classes and book clubs). Contestants selected for inclusion in the contest will be contacted via email after the event and will have until the end of Banned Books Week (October 2, 2021) to claim their prize. Prizes will be delivered within eight (8) weeks of the conclusion of Banned Books Week (October 2, 2021).
This contest is sponsored and maintained by the Banned Books Week Coalition. It is not directly overseen by Jason Reynolds or Simon & Schuster and its subsidiaries.
With its ongoing mission to invest in voices that reflect wide-ranging opinions that impact our society in meaningful ways, Penguin Random House, the world’s largest trade publisher, is supporting this year’s Banned Books Week with major books and financial contributions. From September 23-29, thousands of libraries, schools, bookstores, and community centers across the nation and the world unite to celebrate the freedom to read without interference or censorship.
This year, Penguin Random House is highlighting quotes from books that have been challenged or banned in a social media sweepstakes competition, open to participants who repost these quotes or tag a friend and comment with the hashtags #BannedBooksWeek and #Sweepstakes. For every entry, Penguin Random House will donate one book – up to 5,000 total – to We Need Diverse Books, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping produce and promote literature that reflects and honors the lives of all young people.
Madeline McIntosh, Chief Executive Officer, Penguin Random House U.S., said, “Supporting free speech and diverse voices is at the core of what we do as Penguin Random House. We are committed to continuing our longstanding support of Banned Books Week and this year’s theme, ‘Banning Books Silences Stories,’ to raise awareness of the rising tide of censorship and the importance of ensuring all voices are not just heard and read, but also celebrated.”
Penguin Random House’s two children’s book divisions, Random House Children’s Books (RHCB) and Penguin Young Readers (PYR), have created materials for discussing banned and challenged books and the importance of free expression. RHCB is also holding a sweepstakes for PROPERTY OF THE REBEL LIBRARIAN by Allison Varnes (Random House Books for Young Readers, September 18) and offering a guide on “how to build your own rebel library.” In partnership with the Out of Print Banned Books Collection, RHCB will also hold a sweepstakes for parents to win a prize pack of middle grade titles, as well as for teen readers to win a prize pack of YA books through Underlined. Underlined will also feature a Banned Books Week quiz on the site. PYR will also feature a list of banned and challenged books in an online reading guide at Penguin Teen.
Penguin Random House, the world’s largest trade book publisher, is dedicated to its mission of nourishing a universal passion for reading by connecting authors and their writing with readers everywhere. The company, which employs more than 10,000 people globally, was formed on July 1, 2013, by Bertelsmann and Pearson, who own 75 percent and 25 percent, respectively. With nearly 250 independent imprints and brands on five continents, Penguin Random House comprises adult and children’s fiction and nonfiction print and digital English- and Spanish-language trade book publishing businesses in more than 20 countries worldwide. With over 15,000 new titles, and close to 800 million print, audio and eBooks sold annually, Penguin Random House’s publishing lists include more than 60 Nobel Prize laureates and hundreds of the world’s most widely read authors.
* NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 9/23/18 and 9/29/18. Open to US residents, 18 and older. Void where prohibited or restricted by law. See Official Rules for full details.
Banned Books Week is an annual event that highlights the value of free and open access to information. The event is supported by a coalition of organizations dedicated to free expression, including American Booksellers for Free Expression, American Library Association, American Society of Journalists and Authors, Amnesty International USA, Association of University Presses, Authors Guild, Banned Books Week Sweden, Children’s Book Council, Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE), Freedom to Read Foundation, GLAAD, Index on Censorship, Little Free Library, National Book Foundation, National Coalition Against Censorship, National Council of Teachers of English, PEN America, People For the American Way Foundation, PFLAG, and Project Censored. It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Banned Books Week also receives generous support from HarperCollins Publishers and Penguin Random House.