Hello teachers: Here are some suggestions for how you can get the most out of this site…

I am often asked what do I feel is the best way to teach my books in classrooms. I don’t really know the answer to this. I write because I have questions, not because I have answers and I am often encouraging young people to ask lots of questions. However, my publisher has some answers. They’ve come up with some Teaching Guides (pdf) for some of my books. These Teaching Guides are downloadable and can be used in the classroom setting. I hope this helps.

There have been many Sunday evenings when I’ve logged on to my site and found desperate emails from young people asking questions about specific books. Here’s an example:

Dear Jacqueline Woodson,

I read your book HUSH and liked it very much. My report on the book is due tomorrow and I need to ask you some questions.

  • What major events changed the main character’s life?
  • Where does the story take place?
  • What is the plot?

If you could get back to me tonight, that would be great. Please hurry or else I’ll get a failing grade on my report!

Often, I encourage the reader to go back and read the book again because the answers are in it. Many times I stress the importance of reading books slowly—after all, it takes an author years, sometimes, to write it. I have recently updated this website because I realize I don’t have the time I once had to sit and answer the emails that come in. Thus, this website should have all the information your students need about me. Please encourage them to browse the site, re-read my books and look through the Research Guide for other info they may want to have about me.

Some other good sites include: The American Library AssociationThe National Book Foundation. Another one—I had to go to Google and find it—is

ALA Teen Read Week Event Photo Gallery. At this site, you can find some cool, downloadable photos and get info on Teen Read Week.

If after visiting the various sites and getting the info, your students still want to email me, please let them know that it may be a while before I can answer as in the coming year, I plan to spend a lot of time writing!  Also, while I know it’s a great exercise for the students, please don’t assign them Letters To Jacqueline.  Often the students say they will get credit if I write back.  This is sometimes hard to do.  While I want to answer all letters, I can’t always — because of deadlines, mom hood and travel.  So encourage them, instead, to research me and write to each other.  Tell them all they can feel free to imitate me any way they want!