Women's History
Irene Hunt

Irene Hunt
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 9
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   8.29

     challenging words:    Follett, characterization, horrific, literature, relationship, schooling, teaching, historical, award-winning, writing, fiction, social, successful, despite, extremely, fondness
     content words:    Irene Hunt, Sarah Hunt, When Hunt, Civil War, South Dakota, Across Five Aprils, Five Aprils, Newbery Honor Book Award, Dorothy Canfield Fisher, Book Award

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Irene Hunt
By Jamie Kee

1     Irene Hunt was born on May 08, 1907, in Pontiac, Illinois. She was the daughter of Franklin and Sarah Hunt. When Hunt was young, the family moved to Newton, Illinois. Sadly, her father died when she was seven. In order to get the help of her grandparents, the family moved again. These moves made Hunt lonely, but she was able to enjoy a close relationship with her grandfather. He would tell her many stories about his childhood during the Civil War. These stories later became the basis for one of her books.
2     Hunt continued with her studies until she graduated high school. She then went on to the University of Illinois where she received her degree in 1939. She continued her schooling at the University of Minnesota, receiving an M.A. in 1946. She also did some graduate work in psychology at the University of Colorado. Between the years of 1930 and 1945, Hunt taught English and French in a public school in Illinois. In 1946 she then moved to the University of South Dakota where she taught psychology for four years. She eventually returned to teaching in the elementary and junior high levels in 1960. She retired from teaching in 1969, but upon retirement, Hunt turned her talents to writing full time. Her central focus was to teach history through literature.
3     Hunt published her first book in 1964. Across Five Aprils focuses on the Civil War and its horrific impact on communities and families. She proved to be quite successful writing historical fiction novels, with many critics noting her talent at writing for both children and adult audiences. In 1965 Hunt earned several awards for Across Five Aprils: the Newbery Honor Book Award, the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award, and the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award.

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