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Pennsylvania Announces Slug in Love as the 2024 PA One Book Selection


Harrisburg, PA - The Pennsylvania Department of Education’s (PDE) Office of Commonwealth Libraries (OCL) today announced Slug in Love by Rachel Bright and illustrated by Nadia Shireen as the selection for the 2024 Pennsylvania One Book early literacy program. 

Slug in Love tells the story of Doug the Slug, a slug on a quest for a hug, and features lively and expressive illustrations perfect for young audiences. Through a heartwarming message of self-acceptance and the expression of emotions, the book captures the essence of the PA One Book mission to instill a love for reading at an early age. Public libraries and certified early childhood education programs across Pennsylvania will be provided with a copy of the book in early 2024. 

“Getting young children excited about reading is one of the best ways we can encourage them to become lifelong learners engaged with the world around them,” said Secretary of Education Dr. Khalid N. Mumin. “This year’s PA One Book selection will take readers on a journey of discovery with Doug the Slug and teach them how to better love themselves and others.” 

Celebrating its 19th consecutive year, PA One Book is a statewide initiative dedicated to fostering early literacy habits among preschoolers and their families and caregivers. The PA One Book program extends beyond the act of reading itself, encouraging family engagement through books and offers activities designed to build key language, literacy, and social skills.   

“OCL is so proud to lead the PA One Book Program with our colleagues from the Office of Child Development and Early Learning and our partners in early learning across the Commonwealth,” said Deputy Secretary for the Office of Commonwealth Libraries and State Librarian Susan Banks. “For almost 20 years, this program has been connecting children and their families with Pennsylvania authors for our youngest readers. Early literacy is the foundation of the success of our Commonwealth and we’re so proud to celebrate another title in the long list of One Books that help to build that foundation.” 

Pennsylvanians are encouraged to visit their local public library to check out this year’s title, as well as previous PA One Book titles, and watch for special story time events and other opportunities for preschoolers to engage in activities related to the book this spring. For more information and family engagement activities please visit the PA One Book website.

The PA One Book early literacy project is made possible through a collaboration between PDE, OCL, the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL), Pennsylvania Center for the Book, the Pennsylvania State University, Tuscarora Intermediate Unit 11, Center for Schools & Communities, Early Intervention Technical Assistance, James V. Brown Library, and the Free Library of Philadelphia. Funding for this project is provided in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by OCL, and additional funding is provided by OCDEL. 

For more information on the Pennsylvania Department of Education, please visit the Department of Education websiteor follow PDE on InstagramFacebookTwitterYouTube, or Pinterest.

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