LEARN NC was a program of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education from 1997 – 2013. It provided lesson plans, professional development, and innovative web resources to support teachers, build community, and improve K-12 education in North Carolina. Learn NC is no longer supported by the School of Education – this is a historical archive of their website.

The following books, databases, and websites will help you justify including a work in your collection according to developmental needs and critical review.


  • Nilsen, A. P. (2001). Stages of literary appreciation. In K. L. Donelson, (Ed.), Literature for today’s young adults (pp. 33 – 42). New York: Longman. Although this is a book about literature for young adults, Nilsen’s chapter identifies stages of literary appreciation experienced by readers from birth through adulthood.
  • Havighurst, R. J. (1952). Developmental tasks and education. New York: Longman, Green. Havighurst provides a developmental task framework that describes tasks children must undertake at various ages.


American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
The AACAP provides a Facts for Families series that describes normal stages of development and the needs of special populations. Browse the series by keyword to find the publication most relevant to the challenged work.


Children’s Literature Comprehensive Database
The CLCD provides full text of reviews for children’s and young adult books. It requires a subscription. Many universities subscribe to this database.
Novelist K-8 Plus and Novelist Plus
While not as comprehensive as the CLCD, Novelist does provide the full text of some reviews. If you are in the public schools, you can access Novelist K-8 Plus via NCWiseOwl. Contact Dan Sparlin if you need the password for off-campus access. If you have a public library card, you can access Novelist Plus via NCLive.