ALA Awards Announcements!!!

This morning, Monday January 27,2014 at 8:00am the ALA announced their annual awards. I know that many of my students participating in our Mock Newbery Club are eager to know the results. Unfortunately, our brutal weather in the Midwest closed schools so we were not able to view this broadcast as a Club together.
There were so many great books recognized that I won’t be able to share them all here. I will highlight just a few that I think will be interesting. If you want to see the full list, go to:
The Winner Was: FLORA AND ULYSSES: The Illuminated Adventure by KATE DICAMILLO
Flora and Ulysses
Flora and Ulysses

There were three Newbery Honor Awards(sort of like runner-ups)


This beautiful book also won a SIEBERT HONOR (the category for informational/nonfiction books)


There were three Caldecott Honor Awards:

This is a collection of some of the best of Children’s literature this past year. There are many other awards that I have not highlighted and there are many, many wonderful books from 2013 that did not make this award list. I know that our Mock Newbery Club had a wonderful time reading as many new books as possible. We now have some new award winners to catch up on. Then it is off to 2014 and all the great books yet to be published and read!!


Reading in 2014

Where to begin? There are so many wonderful things to share since my last post. It has been a busy fall/winter. WE are within a week of the ALA announcements of the 2014 Caldecott and Newbery Book award winners. WE have participated in a Mock Caldecott club, in the primary grades, and a Mock Newbery club with the 3-5 grades. Everyone is very excited to see if their favorite book will win the prize.
The contenders according to the Banting Mock Caldecott Club are:
Mr Tiger Goes Wild

Little Red Writing


Exclamation mark


The Day the Crayons Quit

AND THE BANTING WINNER IS: The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

The contenders according to the Banting Mock Newbery club are:
True Blue Scouts of Sugarman Swamp

The Center of Everything

Flora and Ulysses

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library

Doll Bones

Counting by 7's

A Tangle of Knots

AND THE BANTING WINNER IS: A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff

2014 Mock Newbery Book Club

I am so excited to kick off this new book club at Banting Elementary School in Waukesha, WI Wednesday we had our first meeting and there were 20 students and 8 teachers/parents that joined us. To all my “Nerdy Book” friends I must admit it made my heart race to put 28 books into eager hands. I want to thank all the students who patiently took their second choices and agreed to wait for the next round to grab their favorites. I hope that many of the participants check out this blog for updates so I will include some links here that I suggested at the meeting on Wednesday.
On my bookshelf on under Mock Newbery 2014 I will keep a current list of all the books we are going to try to review before January. Click here.
For those interested here is a link to the American Library Associations Newbery site: ALA Newbery

I hope everyone is enjoying their new books so far. OUR NEXT MEETING WILL BE WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 16, 12:00-12:45 IN MRS. BARLOW’S ROOM.

The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man SwampThe True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp by Kathi Appelt
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In my pursuit of the possible Newberry prediction, this very fun book comes closer than the others I have read so far. I absolutely love the voices in this romp through the swamp. Kathi Appelt gives us the voice of the Scouts themselves (raccoon brothers), the desperate grieving Chap, the ridiculously depraved Jaeger Stitch (alligator wrestler), the amoral, greedy Sonny Beaucoup and a third person narrator with a great sense of humor. These characters only scratch the surface though. As you can imagine the bayou is full of Characters, whether they are human, humanoid, or animal. Kathi Appelt brings them all to your living room to tell their story. I have read her The Underneath and was taken by her talent in writing personification. Beyond the fun characters and their stories that are all on a crash course to merge into a fabulous tale, this book would be a wonderful model for exploring the writer’s craft. In our fourth and fifth grades we assign a unit on writing personification, or the giving human qualities to non-human or even inanimate objects. This story would be so wonderful to kick that unit off. The voice and point of view of the narrator is worthy of dissection for a mini-lesson also. Oh yes, she also has some extraordinary examples of onomatopoeia. I will let you look that one up. 🙂 All in all, I loved this book, both its story and its writing!
I have included a wonderful blog post from Kathi Applet about her writing of this fun story.

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