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The 6 New Caldecott Books
Are you familiar with the Caldecott award? It’s an annual award given every year (this was the 75th year!) to the best picture books for children. It’s awarded by the American Librarian Association and the list of books that have that shiny gold sticker is full of treasures. You probably know many of them, like Make Way for Ducklings or The Polar Express.
In addition to the winner, there are honor books – they get a silver sticker – and the number varies from year to year. This year, there were five honor books making a total of six honorees.
As a former children’s librarian, you can imagine that I watch with great excitement each January to find out what books have been chosen. And I was delighted to see that the six books this year were all very accessible to toddlers. Some years, the books are pretty dense and WAY beyond what a one or two year old could sit through (like when the 500+ page The Invention of Hugo Cabret was the winner in 2008).
Here are the 2013 winners, perfect for sharing with your little one:
This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen
This hilarious little tale follows a fish who has stolen a bowler hat, but is convinced he’ll never get caught. Is he wrong?
This one is the gold medal winner!
Creepy Carrots! illustrated by Peter Brown, written by Aaron Reynolds
This not-very-scary tale is about a rabbit that can’t stop eating carrots out of the garden on his way to school, his way back from school, before bed, and pretty much any time of day. But when the carrots seem to start following him wherever he goes, he starts to reconsider his deep love for the vegetable. . .
Extra Yarn illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett
Jon Klassen snagged not only the gold medal, but a silver one as well (this has only happened one other time in all Caldecott history). This one is about a little girl who, living in a very monochrome town, discovers some remarkable yarn and proceeds to knit clothing for everyone who lives in town. And the yarn just keeps going and going.
One Cool Friend illustrated by David Small, written by Toni Buzzeo
The sparse colors in the book are perfect for a tale of a polite little boy who, on a trip the aquarium, asks to take home a penguin (and then takes one home in his backpack).
Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
This beautiful book with cut-outs on each page demonstrates the many many kinds of green there are, from safari green to lime green, each one blending seamlessly into the next page. There are also unexpected ones, like “never green” for a stop sign. I’ve read this to my daughter dozens of times and we both never tire of it.
Sleep Like a Tiger illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski, written by Mary Logue
The gorgeous colors on this one is just right for a bedtime tale, where a little girl is not interested in bed at all, but is finally convinced to “sleep like a tiger.” Wondering how a tiger sleeps? Warm and strong!