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Month: February 2015

  • ALA Youth Media Award Winners, Then & Now

    Here’s a look at the winners and honorees from 2015 and years past (pdfs by Ellen Miles, MLIS, Youth Services Librarian at Camas Public Library, Camas, WA):   The Randolph …

  • Happy Birthday, David Wiesner!

    Wiesner is the recipient of three Caldecott Medals for his books Tuesday, The Three Pigs, and Flotsam, all of which he wrote and illustrated. His books have been translated into …

  • Dan Santat On Having No Regrets

    Should I take this job and make money to support my family, or should I chase my dream?…It pushed me to do more of my own writing and motivated me …

  • Call for Submissions for the 2015 Walter Dean Myers Award

    The submission deadline is November 1, 2015. Eligibility • A diverse work constitutes: YA (for readers ages 13-18) written by a diverse author, featuring a diverse main character or addressing …

  • Announcing the Mathical Book Prize Launch

    Nicole Deming, Interim Director of the Children’s Book Council, says of the new award program: The Children’s Book Council is excited to partner with MSRI to create a go-to source …

  • Announcing the 2015 Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People

    Reviewers look for books that emphasize human relations, represent a diverse range of cultural experiences, and present an original theme or a perspective. A preview of this year’s selected titles …

  • Happy Birthday, Russell Hoban!

    Hoban briefly attended Temple University before enlisting in the Army during World War II. In 1944, he married his first wife, Lillian Aberman, a fellow illustrator whom he’d met at …

  • Penguin Young Readers Receives Eleven 2015 American Library Association (ALA) Youth Media Awards

    New York, NY – Penguin Young Readers has received eleven 2015 American Library Association (ALA) Youth Media Awards. The ALA announced today that BROWN GIRL DREAMING by Jacqueline Woodson (Nancy Paulsen Books) has received the Newbery …

  • CBC Diversity: How Will YOU Step It Up?

    Contributed to CBC Diversity by Janet Wong

    The biggest publishing story of last yearwas diversity: the #WeNeedDiverseBooks movement, the watermelon “joke,”and the way the two overlapped when WNDB’s Indiegogo campaign topped $334,000,thanks to an apology.

    Diversity is the biggest story of this yearso far, too, with the ALSC/CBC collaboration on the Day of Diversity: Dialogue & Action event, which was just held at ALA Midwinter 2015 in Chicago on January 30. I’m eager to see what comes in the next weeks, months, and year from former Executive Director of the CBC Robin Adelson’s challenge: “it’s now time to move from talk to action.” In addition to the Day of Diversity, a session called “Stepping It Up With Action!” was held on February 1 and ALSC will be hosting follow-up community forums and webinars to continue the conversation and make sure everyone is involved in action steps.

    How do you plan to step it up? What kind of action would you like to see?

    I’d like to see more along the lines of the #WeHaveDiverseBooks hashtag that Scholastic has made popular—with increased support for inclusive titles that were published in the last twenty years. You can find handy lists of the Notable Books for a Global Society (NBGS) winners from 1996 to the present here.

    Last year, many people between 20 and 30 years old held up a #WNDB sign proclaiming “when I was a child, I never found a book with someone like me in it.” But the problem resides in finding these inclusive books, not in their existence. Kids need the opportunity to connect with authors like Alma Flor Ada, Joseph Bruchac, Virginia Hamilton, Pat Mora, Walter Dean Myers, Naomi Shihab Nye, Allen Say, Rita Williams-Garcia, and Laurence Yep. Of course, even teachers and librarians have trouble finding these authors; this is why educator Yvonne Siu-Runyan started the NBGS committee in 1995.

    The committee’s mission then and now is simple: identify 25 outstanding trade books for Pre-K to Grade 12 each year that promote understanding across lines of culture, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and values. But having a list is just part of it; the NBGS committee empowers teachers to share those books with classroom-ready teaching suggestions and related materials in a hefty article published each spring in The Dragon Lode journal.

    This year’s just-released NBGS list of books, linked here in a printer-friendly PDF for sharing, includes already-classic titles such as Beyond Magenta, Brown Girl Dreaming, El Deafo, and Silver People—but it also includes books that you won’t stumble on in your average browsing experience in a bookstore or online. Here is one page from the four-page PDF that lists all 25 winners. 

    Stay tuned for teaching suggestions and related materials for these titles in the Spring 2015 issue of The Dragon Lode.

    * * *

    As Joni Mitchell sang in “Big Yellow Taxi”:

    Don’t it always seem to go

    You don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone

    I’m stepping it up this year by posting something on social media each week that links a wonderful inclusive title from the past 20 years with a new classic. This week, I’m linking two books by the same author, one from the 1996 NBGS list and the other from the 2015 list. Both titles share a Brooklyn setting and a main character who loves to write and is being raised by a single mother.

    From the 1996 NBGS List:

    • From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun by Jacqueline Woodson (Scholastic/Blue Sky)

    From the 2015 NBGS List:

    • Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson (Penguin/Nancy Paulsen)

    How about that pair for a look at then and now? Yes, #WNDB: let’s keep on making new classics in diversity. But #WHDB too: and let’s keep our existing gems alive.

    Janet Wong (janetwong.com) is an author, anthologist, publisher, and literacy volunteer who is the immediate past chair of the NBGS Committee. Discover more about the CL/R SIG and the NBGS at clrsig.org.

  • 2015 Newbery & Caldecott Winners Announced

    Kwame Alexander received the 2015 Newbery Medal and the Coretta Scott King (Author) Honor for his novel ‘The Crossover’ (HMH). The Caldecott Medal went to illustrator Dan Santat for ‘The …

  • 2015 Notable Books for a Global Society Announced

    Click here for the complete list of the 2015 winners. About CL/R SIG The Mission of the Children´s Literature and Reading Special Interest Group is to promote the educational use …

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