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The Eric Carle Museum
of Picture Book Art
  • 125 West Bay Road
  • Amherst, MA 01002


  • Thursday, Friday 10 am - 4 pm
  • Saturday 10 am - 5 pm
  • Sunday 12 pm - 5 pm

Closed Monday,Tuesday, Wednesday

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Simmons College and The Carle Announce Spring 2016 Courses press release

Simmons College and The Carle  Announce Spring 2016 Graduate Courses

Amherst, MA (November 19, 2015) — Simmons College and The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art are pleased to announce January and March course offerings. Classes are for candidates in the four graduate programs in children's literature offered at The Carle, as well as for non-degree students. Courses take place at the Museum’s Amherst, Massachusetts location, a site which offers students countless opportunities to meet artists, authors, and scholars in the field of children’s literature. The classes are held weekday evenings. For registration information, please contact

CHL 401 - Criticism of Literature for Children (4 credits)
Tuesdays, 5:00 – 7:50 pm, January 26 – May 10, 2016
Develops the individual critical voices of students and acquaints them with the literary canon and a variety of literacy perspectives through exposure to many influential schools of literacy criticism. Applies critical skills in the examination of a range of novels (realism and fantasy), short stories, biographies, nonfiction, and translated works published for children. Instructor: Megan D. Lambert

CHL 415 - A Whole Book Approach to Picturebook Art & Design (2 credits)
March 17 and 18 (5:00 -8:15 pm); March 19 and 20 (10:00 am – 5:00 pm)
Provides an overview of The Whole Book Approach, a storytime model developed by Megan Lambert in association with The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, which is grounded in critical engagement with the picturebook as a visual art form. Students will critically engage with the design and production elements of a broad range of contemporary picture books, employing Structuralist, Reader Response, and other approaches to examining how words, pictures and design impact readers' engagement with primary texts. The course will also include opportunities for students to observe WBA storytimes to see how theory informs practice as children engage with picturebooks in facilitated readings. Instructor: Megan D. Lambert

CHL 421 - Children's Book Publishing (4 credits)
Fridays, January 29, February 26, April 1, April 29 (5:00 – 8:00 pm); Saturdays, January 30, February 27, April 2, April 30 (9:00 am – 4:00 pm); Sundays, January 31, February 28, April 3, May 1 (9:00 am – 4:00 pm)
Surveys the history of children’s book publishing in the U.S. and then focuses on the various stages of the contemporary children’s book publishing process editing, art direction and design, and marketing. Practioners from each of these areas will share their expertise and involvement in the evolution of a books creation. The final assignment requires that each student will develop a publishing project and show how such a book would be published. Instructor: Vicky Smith

CHL 430 - Writing for Children I  (4 credits)
Wednesdays, January 20 – May 4, 2016 (5:00 – 7:50 pm)
Investigates the process of writing fiction for children through written assignments and class discussion of both assignments and of published books. Examines different narrative forms and techniques and the elements and development of a story. Includes individual conferences and an opportunity to work on individual projects if desired. Requires a willingness to participate and experiment, but previous creative writing experience is not necessary. Instructor: Peter Francois Littell

Classes may be subject to cancellation depending on enrollment.

Those interested in the program are encouraged to attend an information session at The Carle on Saturday, December 12 (11:00 am – 12:00 pm)

Visit to register.

“Part of what makes this so special is that both The Carle and Simmons understand the importance of children’s books,” says Cathryn Mercier, Director of the CSCL. “Those enrolled in the program include students with a wide range of life experiences—teachers, librarians, and writers, along with those who have no professional experience in the field but a great passion for the topic.”

The satellite program, begun in the fall of 2008, includes four different tracks for students: an M.F.A. in Children’s Writing, an M.A. in Children’s Literature, a dual M.F.A. in Writing for Children/M.A. in Children’s Literature degree, and a dual M.A. in Children’s Literature/M.S. in Library Science in collaboration with the Library Science program at Mount Holyoke in South Hadley. This partnership builds upon The Center for the Study of Children’s Literature (CSCL) at Simmons College, which opened in 1977 with funding from The National Endowment for the Humanities.

About the Simmons Graduate Programs in Children’s Literature

Simmons College administers the nation’s first Master of Arts in Children’s Literature as well as a Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in Writing for Children. The programs provide a rigorous, disciplined study of children's books for those who are — or who intend to be — involved in teaching, library services, publishing, writing, or related fields. To develop a critical vocabulary essential for appraising text and illustration, students apply a high level of scholarly analysis to children’s literature ranging from folklore and mythology to contemporary realistic fiction and nonfiction. With an emphasis on historical and critical analysis—including feminist, ideological, and multicultural perspectives—the interdisciplinary curriculum draws upon art, history, education, sociology, psychology and media studies. 

About The Museum

The mission of The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, a non-profit organization in Amherst, MA, is to inspire a love of art and reading through picture books. The only full-scale museum of its kind in the United States, The Carle collects, preserves, presents, and celebrates picture books and picture book illustrations from around the world. In addition to underscoring the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of picture books and their art form, The Carle offers educational programs that provide a foundation for arts integration and literacy.

Eric Carle and the late Barbara Carle founded the Museum in November 2002. Eric Carle is the renowned author and illustrator of more than 70 books, including the 1969 classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Since opening, the 40,000-square foot facility has served more than half a million visitors, including 30,000 schoolchildren. Its extensive resources include a collection of more than 10,000 picture book illustrations, three art galleries, an art studio, a theater, picture book and scholarly libraries, and educational programs for families, scholars, educators, and schoolchildren. Educational offerings include professional training for educators around the country. Museum hours are Tuesday through Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday 12 noon to 5 p.m. Open Mondays in July and August and during MA school vacation weeks. Admission is $9 for adults, $6 for children under 18, and $22.50 for a family of four. For further information and directions, call 413-658-1100 or visit the Museum’s website at


IMAGES ARE AVAILABLE FOR REPRODUCTION. For additional press information and/or images, please contact Sandy Soderberg, Marketing Manager (413) 658–1105 /


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