I am so excited to be a 2nd round judge for Easy Readers and Early Chapter Books for the Cybils Awards!
The Cybils Awards aims to recognize the children’s and young adult authors and illustrators whose books combine the highest literary merit and popular appeal.
I was thrilled to meet Barbara Petzen of the Middle East Outreach Council at the National Council for the Social Studies meeting. The Middle East Outreach Council just announced their award for best children’s and young adult books!
Established in 1999, the Middle East Book Award recognizes quality books for children and young adults that contribute meaningfully to an understanding of the Middle East and its component societies and cultures.
Books are judged on the authenticity of their portrayal of a Middle Eastern subject, as well as on characterization, plot, and appeal for the intended audience. For this award, the Middle East is defined as the Arab World, Iran, Israel, Turkey, and Afghanistan.
Awards are given in three categories: Picture Books, Youth Literature, and Youth Nonfiction.
Now in its fourteenth year, the Middle East Book Award recognizes quality publications in three categories: Picture Book, Youth Literature, and Youth Nonfiction (not awarded this year).
Here are the winners! Read more…
I have a selfish reason for compiling this list. It’s my Christmas book list for my kids. It’s also because my kids won’t read (probably like yours!) unless they have a really good book and so I search and search and present, like a game show hostess, blog posts of books that I think my kids will like and they unceremoniously, nay or approve each selection. Usually a nay, by the way. This is what I get back:
“No thanks mom.” (Grasshopper and Sensei politely declining)
“That looks boring.” (PickyKidPix; she is the least concerned about my feelings)
“Ummm, can we choose something else?” (My son squirms uncomfortably when he dislikes a book choice)
“I’ll just re-read Percy Jackson. I don’t want you to spend any of your money.” (What my son actually did all summer to avoid reading a “boring” book)
And now I need chapter books besides action adventure for my son (his teacher is trying to broaden his horizens); realistic fiction and dystopian for PickyKidPix; dystopian, non-stupid helpless girl romance and realistic fiction YA for Grasshopper and Sensei. And picture books for all of us, but only the “good” ones. Read more…
This is part II of the Massachusetts Children’s Book Award list from last year. Part I is here and covers 3rd and 4th grade books for kids. The grade levels suggestions are from either School Library Journal or Booklist. This year’s Massachusetts Children’s Book Award list is here.
What books for 5th or 6th grade are you and your child enjoying?
The fifth graders at our elementary school are challenged every year to read all the books listed on the Massachusetts Children’s Book Award. I really love this book list because it has a variety of newly published and slightly older books such that you can actually find the books on the library bookshelves. Our school librarian also makes a point of making a special display and buying multiple copies of these books.
I’ve also discovered gems on the list from years past. The list doesn’t necessarily feature Massachusetts’ children’s authors but it was how I found Mitali Perkins’ Rickshaw Girl eight years ago!
Does your state have a book award too? How does it work?
Third Grade and Low Fourth Grade Books
This is the first part of the Massachusetts Book Awards which I’ve divided by suggested grade level. Part I covers Third Grade, Low Fourth Grade and Fourth Grade Books. At the next Kid Lit Blog Hop in two weeks, I’ll cover Part II which covers Fifth and Sixth Grade.
We the Children (Benjamin Pratt and the Keepers of the School) by Andrew Clements
The Trouble with Chickens: A J.J. Tully Mystery by Doreen Cronin
Fourth grade at my elementary school marks a really interesting immigration unit that introduced my kids to their first group project experience. They learned, the hard way, about freeloaders but the end result was a “Wax Museum” where each child played a wax statue that, when prompted by dropping in a fake coin in a bucket, recited a speech about life as a new immigrant. Each group chose a different country to emigrate from that included Poland, Ireland, Italy, China, Japan and more. They also created a Wax Museum display bulletin board that talked about the immigrant experience from their country. What was most noticeable was how every, single group talked about the racism and prejudice they faced upon coming to America.
It seems that in fourth grade, kids are starting to really develop empathy skills so historical fiction about immigration or the mistreatment of dogs moves them deeply. I’ve included the books that my kids remember reading as part of a classroom assignment or as a read aloud in 4th grade and added a few of my favorites. My son just started 4th grade this year, so I will keep track of his classroom read alouds and will add them to this list all year.
Please share your ideas for 4th grade read alouds. Thank you! Read more…
Edgar Award Winners for Best Juvenile Mystery
The “Edgars” as they are known are officially The Edgar Allan Poe Awards, named after Edgar Allan Poe, and presented every year by the Mystery Writers of America. The awards cut across many genres including mystery fiction, non-fiction, television, film, and theater.
I’ve listed the winners from the Juvenile category. Within the Juvenile category, there are wide span of ages, with the exception of picture books. If you want a picture book mystery, my recommedation is find the books by Doug Cushman.
My son is reading 5 books for summer homework assigned by his upcoming 4th grade teachers. He is supposed to read a variety of genres but I forgot about mysteries, hence this list! How about you? Are your kids reading and enjoying mysteries? What is their favorite? Thanks for sharing!
There aren’t many children’s book awards for graphic novels or comic books so I was excited to learn about The Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, commonly shortened to the Eisner Awards. It awards prizes for creative achievement in American comic books, sometimes referred to as the Comics Industry’s equivalent of the Oscar Awards.
The Cybils also has a graphic novel award but only in middle grade and young adult categories so it was nice to see graphic novels for young children awarded as well! There is very little overlap between the two awards: The Cybils vs the Eisner. The lone overlapping graphic novel is The Lost Boy.