Carter Reads the Newspaper

by Deborah Hopkinson
Illustrated by Don Tate
Essential Black History Reading  
  • ISBN: 9781561459346
  • Publication date: 02/01/2019
  • Page Count: 36
  • Size: 10-7/8" x 9-1/2"
  • Age Range: 6-10
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781561459346
  • Publication date: 02/01/2019
  • Page Count: 36
  • Size: 10-7/8" x 9-1/2"
  • Age Range: 6-10
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781682633328
  • Publication date: 08/01/2021
  • Page Count: 36
  • Size: 10-7/8" x 9-1/2"
  • Age Range: 6-10
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 6-10
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781682633076
  • Publication date: 08/01/2020
  • Page Count: N/A
  • Age Range: 6-10
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 6-10
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Essential Black History Reading

The first-ever picture book biography of Carter G. Woodson, the Father of Black History Month

Carter G. Woodson Book Award (Honor Book), NCSS

“An important and inspiring tale well told.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Carter G. Woodson didn’t just read history. He changed it.” As the father of Black History Month, he spent his life introducing others to the history of his people.

Carter G. Woodson was born to two formerly enslaved people ten years after the end of the Civil War. Though his father could not read, he believed in being an informed citizen, so Carter read the newspaper to him every day. As a teenager, Carter went to work in the coal mines, and there he met Oliver Jones, who did something important: he asked Carter not only to read to him and the other miners, but also research and find more information on the subjects that interested them.

“My interest in penetrating the past of my people was deepened,” Carter wrote. His journey would take him many more years, traveling around the world and transforming the way people thought about history.

From an award-winning team of author Deborah Hopkinson and illustrator Don Tate, this first-ever picture book biography of Carter G. Woodson emphasizes the importance of pursuing curiosity and encouraging a hunger for knowledge of stories and histories that have not been told.

Illustrations also feature brief biological sketches of important figures from African and African American history.


Deborah Hopkinson


Deborah Hopkinson is the award-winning author of numerous critically acclaimed picture and chapter books, including Keep On!; Sweet Land of Liberty; Under the Quilt of Night; and Shutting Out the Sky: Life in the Tenements of New York 1880-1924.

Don Tate


Don Tate is the author and illustrator of numerous critically acclaimed books for children. In 2016, he earned an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award for his first picture book Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton.


“Hopkinson skillfully shapes Carter’s childhood, family history and formative experiences into a cohesive story.…the inclusion of notable figures from black history reinforces the theme (a key is in the backmatter). An important and inspiring tale well told.” ―Kirkus Reviews

“Young readers will be caught up in his story…. Quotes are seamlessly woven into the narrative, and a time line, list of sources, and bibliography add research appeal. Of special note are the illustrations, which include more than 40 portraits of black leaders… Their images and one-line biographies will pique further interest, making this a valuable resource for school and public libraries.” ―Booklist

“Thorough back matter… A charmingly illustrated picture book biography for elementary schoolers.” —School Library Journal

“Conversational… Delicately textured mixed-media illustrations…offer spare, stylized images…” —Publishers Weekly

“Fascinating… Expressive artwork…” —Foreword Reviews

“This will be a go-to title for Black History Month, but a more meaningful tribute to the celebration’s founder will be a catalyst for further African-American studies throughout the year.” —Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Exemplary… This inspiring picture book combines a rich but focused text with clear, expressive mixed-media illustrations. It sheds light on an important, inspiring, but little-known subject, and the supplemental back matter gives weight to the exceedingly important takeaways that history must include all people, and that anyone can change history.” —Shelf Awareness


Carter G. Woodson Book Award (Honor Book, Elementary)―National Council for the Social Studies, 2020

Eureka! Nonfiction Children’s Book Award Silver Honor ―California Reading Association, 2019

Social Justice Literature Award ―Literacy and Social Justice Special Interest Group, International Literacy Association, 2020

Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award ―Parents’ Choice Foundation, 2019

Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People ―NCSS/CBC, 2020

Notable Children’s Books―ALSC, 2020

Northern Lights Book Award (Biography) ―Northern Dawn Awards, 2019

Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Book ―Chicago Public Library, 2019

Top 10 Books for Kids ―New York Public Library, 2019

Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children’s Literature (Finalist) ―Literary Arts, 2020

Best Children’s Books of the Year (Starred) ―Bank Street College of Education, 2020

Children’s Crown Award (Nominee) ―National Christian School Association, 2020-2021

Delaware Diamonds (Nominee, 3-5) ―Diamond State Reading Association, 2020-2021

Great Kids Can Read Award  (Nominee) ―Greater Kansas City Assoc of School Librarians, 2021-2022

Kansas State Reading Circle Recommended Reading List (Intermediate) ―Kansas National Education Association, 2020

Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice Award (Nominee, Grades 3-5) ―State Library of Louisiana and Louisiana Center for the Book, 2021-2022

Oregon Spirit Book Award  (Honor, Nonfiction) ―Oregon Council of Teachers of English, 2019

Pennsylvania Young Reader’s Choice Awards (Nominee, Grades K-3) ―Pennsylvania School Librarians Association, 2021-2022

Paterson Prize for Books for Young People (Honor Book) ―The Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College, 2020


Resources: Other, Poster, Teacher's Guide

Teacher’s Guide
Author Q&A
Illustrator Q&A

More Details

AR Level: 4.5
F&P: P, Gr 3, Genre B
Lexile: 810L
Themes: African-American History, Biography, Education, Research, Family
BISAC 1: JNF007050 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Cultural Heritage
BISAC 2:JNF007020 JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Historical
BISAC 3: JNF018010 JUVENILE NONFICTION / People & Places / United States / African American

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