We read through 25 Caldecott contenders and came up with our favorite picks for our very own Mock Caldecott Awards.
Last month Janssen, over at Everyday Reading, posted a Mock Caldecott Score Sheet along with a list of 25 books that were rumored contenders for the prestigious picture book award. I thought it was absolute genius!
Apparently librarians do this sort of thing all the time, just not the ones I know. But I was so excited to do this with my own kids. Luckily this is the sort of thing they get just as excited about as I do. We put all the books on hold at the library (actually we had to go to three different libraries to get them all) and got to work.
We finally picked up the last book that we had to score on Friday. It was just in time too because they will be announcing the actual Caldecott winner tomorrow!
This was so much fun! (Thank you Janssen!) We read all 25 books multiple times and we each filled out our own score sheets, with the exception of the 3 year old who just picked favorites. We read through all the guidelines for scoring and then scrutinized the books.
As would be expected of Caldecott contenders, all 25 books are fantastic. No matter which book wins the actual award tomorrow, I highly recommend printing out Janssen’s list and reading every single one of them.
However, we each had a few that stood out among the rest. We all had definite favorites and I was surprised to see that each of us picked a different winning book. I was also amused by how strict (and sometimes even severe) my 11 and 9 year olds were in their scoring. They had some strong opinions about some of the books.
Here’s the breakdown:
2018 Mock Caldecott Awards Breakdown
- Allison – Age 35, mother of 4, and life long book lover
- Esme – Age 11, junior high newbie, and self taught reader since age 3
- Eila – Age 9, graphic novel enthusiast, and artist extraordinaire
- Adelaide – Age 7, but almost 8, and by far the most willing to cuddle and listen to a book
- Rory – Age 3, smart as whip, and loves a good laugh
Chosen by Allison because of its unique illustrations, its ability to explain big ideas for kids, and its great wisdom that is so highly relevant to the time we live in now. She said, “This book, with all of its beauty, brought tears to my eyes.”
Quote from book: “Liberty and freedom from oppression are not things you get by standing around like some kind of statue. No! These are things that require action. Courage. An unwillingness to rest.”
Chosen by Esme for its quirky humor, adorable illustrations, and clever story (despite the fact that her mother thought it was a little weird). She said, “It’s so weird that it’s amazing. I am a boat.”
Quote from book: “Remember, you are strong, and piece by crooked piece you are made.”
Chosen by Eila for its inspiring imagination, beautiful illustrations, and overall genius. She said, “This book just makes me want to draw, no matter how many mistakes I make.”
Quote from book: : Do you see | how with each mistake | she is becoming?”
Chosen by Adelaide for its “cuteness,” and the “swallowing,” and how they all end up helping each other. She said, “This is my favorite book to read at bed time.”
Quote from the book: “I may have been swallowed, said the duck, but I have no intention of being eaten.”
Chosen by Rory for its ability to entertain as all the best fairy tales do. He said, “Read it again please.”
Quote from book: “And over where the sun shone brightest and the wild grasses flourished, the billy goats would fill their bellies.”
After we tallied up our scores, we had a lot of ties. While we were finally able to each pick one favorite, there were so many we loved. Here are the books that each of us dubbed our Honor Books.
Allison’s runner up favorites:
Before She Was Harriet by Lesa Cline-Ransome (I’d really love to see this one win this year too!)
Grand Canyon by Jason Chin (this one is WOW with the illustrations)
Esme’s runner up favorites:
Eila’s runner up favorites:
Adelaide’s runner up favorites:
Rory’s runner up favorites:
Have you read any of the Caldecott contenders? What book do you want to see win?