Author studies are such a fun way to dive deep into literature! I have always loved sharing my favorite authors with my students and learning some that were theirs. Author studies make great beginning-of-the-school-year projects and what better way to send them off into summer? There are many ways to implement an author study, but the obvious first step is to select an author to actually study. This can be your choice based on an author you feel passionate about or you can have your students give their input and even vote on it.

Another option for choosing an author to study is to select multiple authors. Decide on a longer duration for your study (than you would for studying just one author) and study a new author every week. Alternatively, older students could be divided into groups with each group studying a different author for studies short in duration. Either way, you'll want to consider the developmental level of your students when choosing the author and the type of books they write (genre, plot, picture book vs. non-picturebook). For ideas on how to implement an author study, check out our example on Eric Carle.

The following list offers some extremely talented authors. Many students may already be familiar with some of their stories and will enjoy getting to know their author. The books written by these authors represent varying elementary themes and each author has multiple titles to choose from (another important factor to consider when planning a study!).

  • Hans Christian Anderson
  • Stan and Jan Berenstain
  • Judy Blume
  • Jan Brett
  • Marc Brown
  • Eric Carle
  • Tomie De Paola
  • Lois Ehlert
  • Mem Fox
  • Gail Gibbons
  • Kevin Henkes
  • Leo Lionni
  • Bill Martin
  • Mercer Meyer
  • Robert Munsch
  • Laura Numeroff
  • Mary Pope Osborne
  • Patricia Polacco
  • Cynthia Rylant
  • Dr. Seuss
  • Chris Van Allsburg
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • Mo Willems