Stacks of books

This time on The Children’s Hour, our summer interns Julia Wolfe and Sophie Anderson-Haynie have co-written and produced a program about Banned Books. They teach us what that means, the history of banning books, and how it’s even possible in the era of digital reading.

We explore banned books on this episode of The Children’s Hour. What is a banned book? Who decides which books are to be banned, and from where are they banned? When a book is banned, is it still possible to read it? Our summer interns have researched and explored banned books. We even hear a portion of a banned book read by its author, and hear a book review about a book that has the topic of banned books as part of the storyline. 

Hear from an author whose book was banned in one Michigan school district because it was accused of teaching a college level concept called critical race theory. Laurel Goodluck‘s book, Forever Cousins tells the story of two young cousins who live far apart, but who delight in getting together in the summertime, as they attend a ceremony on the reservation where their grandparents live.



Then, Evan from our Kids Crew reviews the book I Lived on Butterfly Hill, first published in 2014. The historic novel recounts one child’s experiences of living in Chile during an era of political revolution. Books were banned in this story, and in real life Chile at that time, but the grandmother (“abuela”) character saves books by hiding them. Evan gives his Kids Crew review of the book, which has received multiple awards.


Banned Books Week is celebrated every year. You can learn more about what children’s books are the top 10 banned books of last year, and how librarians are pushing back against censorship.

Top 10 Challenged Books for 2023 image of portions of covers presented by the American Library Association

American teenagers ages 13 to 21 can get a free, unlimited library membership to the Brooklyn Public Library to check out digital books, as part of their Booked Unbanned program. Learn more and sign up by clicking here!

This show was produced by our Executive Producer, Katie Stone, with help from Senior Producer Christina Stella, 2022 Summer Interns Julia Wolfe & Sophie Anderson-Haynie, and 2024 Summer Intern Thaniel Lentz.

© 2024 The Children’s Hour Inc, All Rights Reserved 

Playlist: Banned Books

I'm Gonna Read (500 Books)Turtle Dance MusicAdd to the World
The Transit of VenusUS Marine Band & Lieutenant Colonel Jack T. KlineThe Heritage of John Philip Sousa: Volume 7
God Bless My UnderwearHans MayerSee You Later Alligator
Stately ShadowsBlue Dot SessionsDuck Lake
Favorite BookThe BazillionsOn the Bright Side
The World Is Big, The World Is SmallPete SeegercELLAbration
Gentle ChasePodington BearBackground
I'll Keep Reading My BookFolk Club KidsFolk Club Kids
Or So I Have ReadThey Might Be Giants (For Kids)Why?
Sun NationKetsasingle
Banned (feat. Regina Carter, Oran Etkin, Cheryl B. Engelhardt, SaulPaul, Divinity Roxx & Joya Barman)Joanie LeedsFreadom: Songs Inspired by Banned Children's Books (feat. Regina Carter, Oran Etkin, Cheryl B. Engelhardt, SaulPaul & Divinity Roxx)
P Flunked FunkPodington BearThe Box Set
In a BookAaron Nigel Smith & One World ChorusWelcome to the Village!
Simple ValeBlue Dot SessionsCauldron
Read a Book (Converging Song) [feat. Billy Jonas]Two of a KindSing Me Your Story
BooksEloise GreenfieldHip Hop Speaks to Children
One Tribe1 Tribe CollectiveAll One Tribe
BookwormCaspar BabypantsKeep It Real!
ContrarianBlue Dot SessionsSketchbook - EP
ReadKatie Dwyer MusicMusic Makes Me Happy
The Book I'm Not ReadingPatty LarkinA Gogo
Love to ReadMister GThe Bossy E
Can I Talk to You?Podington BearThe Box Set
Read a BookThe Schmooney & FriendsThe Schmooney & Friends Music Show

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