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Banned Books Week 4 Teens: Banned Books Week

Every year at the end of September, the American Library Association (ALA) sponsors a week long awareness campaign that celebrates the freedom to read. This is a guide for teens who want to learn more about Banned Books Week.

Mrs. Librarian Lady's Favorite Banned Books

The Witches by Roald Dahl

"Down with children! Do them in!
Boil their bones and fry their skin!
Bish them,
sqwish them, bash them, mash them!
Break them, shake them, slash them, smash them!
Offer chocs with magic powder!
Say "Eat up" then say it louder.
Cram them full of sticky eats,
Send them home still guzzling sweets.
And in the morning little fools,
Go marching off to separate schools.
A girl feels sick and goes all pale.
She yells:"Hey look! I've grown a tail!"
A boy
whos standing next to her
Screams, "Help I think I'm growing fur!"
Another shouts, "We look like freaks!

There's wiskers
growing on our cheeks!"
A boy who was very tall
Cries out: "Whats wrong, I'm growing small!"
Four tiny legs begin to sprout
From everybody round about.
And all at once, all in a trice,
There are no children! Only MICE!

The Grand High Witch, The Witches by Roald Dahl

Why Banned Books Week?


Banned Books Week is a national celebration that focuses on the freedom to read. The main idea of celebrating is to remind everyone that no matter what their age is, they have the right to read the books and materials they choose to read.  Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 by the American Library Association when they noticed a large number of books being taken out of schools and libraries.  Every year, hundreds of libraries around the country celebrate Banned Books Week by putting up displays of books that have been challenged or banned from a school, bookstore, or library. Some libraries host events in their library and read parts from their favorite banned books. 


Librarians across the country use Banned Books Week each year to teach the importance of the freedom to read and the power of literature. The books featured on the Top 100 Challenged list have been targeted throughout for many different reasons.  According to the American Library Association, when people want to remove books from libraries they usually do this with the best intentions.  They want to protect others from difficult ideas and information. 

Mrs. Librarian Lady's Favorite Banned Books

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

"I wanted to cry, but Greasers don't cry in front of strangers. Some of us never cry at all. Like Dally and Two-Bit and Tim Shepard--they forgot how at an early age." Pony Boy, The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Words Have Power


Are you looking for a way to celebrate your freedom to read during Banned Books Week? Consider participating in the Banned Books Virtual Read-out!

Since the inception of Banned Books Week in 1982, libraries and bookstores throughout the country have staged local read-outs—a continuous reading of banned/challenged books—as part of their activities. Now in it's sixth year (2016), readers from around the world can participate in the Banned Books Virtual Read-Out by creating videos proclaiming the virtues of the freedom to read that will be featured on a dedicated YouTube channel.

Check out the criteria. Submit your video by filling out this form. You can submit videos at any time of the year!

Mrs. LIbrarian Lady's Favorite Banned Books

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

“I am always saying "Glad to've met you" to somebody I'm not at all glad I met. If you want to stay alive, you have to say that stuff, though.”Holden Caulfield, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger