A professor of language and literacies development in teacher education, Margaret Hagood ’92 has had a love of children’s literature since she won a schoolwide children’s book-writing competition in the fifth grade.  

margaret hagood reads

(Photos by Heather Moran)

“Reading and writing have always been an important outlet in my life to learn about others’ identities and to connect more deeply to my own,” she says. “Having spent years as a classroom teacher, getting a doctorate in literacies and being a mother of four children, I have been surrounded by children’s literature my entire life. The beauty of children’s literature is that it is universal to the human spirit and transcends age norms. And the illustrations in children’s picture books provide an added visual modality for connecting to the story.” 

Here is Hagood’s Top 10 list (plus one bonus pick) of children’s picture books, in no particular order:

1. Everywhere Babies Susan Meyers (author) Marla Frazee (illustrator) 

2. Each Kindness Jacqueline Woodson (author) E.B. Lewis (illustrator) 

3. Same, Same but Different Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw (author and illustrator) 

4. How Are You Peeling? Foods with Moods Saxton Freymann (author and illustrator) Joost Elffers (author)

5. Lubna and Pebble Wendy Meddour (author) Daniel Egnéus (illustrator) 

6. You Are Never Alone Elin Kelsey (author) Soyeon Kim (illustrator) 

7. Thank You, Mr. Falker Patricia Polacco (author and illustrator) 

8. Carmela Full of Wishes Matt de la Peña (author) Christian Robinson (illustrator) 

9. Jabari Jumps Gaia Cornwall  (author and illustrator) 

10. The Black Book of Colors Menena Cottin (author) Rosana Faría (illustrator) 

11. The Invisible Boy Trudy Ludwig (author) Patrice Barton (illustrator)