In response to the scores of homebound students, parents, and teachers searching for educational resources to enhance remote learning, KidLit TV has created KidLit At Home, a free online destination that curates video content from children’s book creators across the web in one central location. Since its debut on June 8, KidLit At Home has amassed 10,000 views.
The brainchild of KidLit TV founder Julie Gribble—along with her team of authors, illustrators, parent bloggers, educators, librarians, and illustrators—KidLit At Home is a brand extension of the web-based platform that provides children with content to help foster a greater appreciation of reading. “KidLit At Home allows us to expand the reach of kid lit creators by making their videos easier to find and share with a broader audience,” she said.
As part of their process, Gribble and her partner Bethany Edwards, founder of the Biracial Bookworms blog, spearhead the group’s search for diverse video content. Featured materials range from picture books to young adult reading levels. (A TeenLit TV spin-off, in which all of KidLit TV’s YA content will merge with that of new content creators, is slated for next year.) When reviewing potential materials, the staff looks for such qualifications as age appropriateness, presentation (is it entertaining and/or informative?), and video quality (can the author/illustrator be seen or heard clearly?).
Viewers can access KidLit At Home by clicking on the “kitty at home” icon on KidLit TV’s home page; registration is not required. By clicking on a video, users can visit the author’s YouTube channel or copy the video link to share it. (A comments section for KidLit At Home has not yet been activated.)
New content is updated each week, as highlighted in a “Featured This Week” section, while the “From Our Friends” section is reserved for sponsored playlists from exclusive publisher partnerships. This month, Abrams and Candlewick offer drawing lessons, student-conducted interviews with authors, and other materials in both English and Spanish. “We also worked with Abrams on the first episode of [our] Read Out Loud At Home [segment], featuring Mac Barnett reading his picture book, Paolo, Emperor of Rome,” Gribble said. Publishers may also submit videos via Google forms for consideration.
Aside from promoting Kid Lit At Home via its social media channels, KidLit TV distributes a bi-weekly newsletter that highlights updated content on the website. “In addition to the U.S., we have visitors from all over the world: India, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, New Zealand, and South Korea, to name just a few, with more than 200,000 views per month [on KidLit TV],” Gribble noted. A partnership to promote KidLit At Home with educators is in the works.