Reading & Literacy

2016 Children’s Book Award Winners Announced

By Liana Loewus — January 12, 2016 1 min read
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Young readers, their teachers, and other fans of literature for young people have new material to inform their reading lists: The American Library Association announced yesterday the winners of its 2016 awards for children’s media.

The awards include the John Newbery Medal for distinguished contribution to children’s literature, awarded since 1922; the Randolph Caldecott Medal for illustration; and the Coretta Scott King Awards, which are given to African-American writers and illustrators.

Matt de la Peña won the 2016 Newbery Medal for Last Stop on Market Street, a picture book that follows a young boy and his grandmother on a trip through the city. NPR interviewed de la Peña, who says his intention is to “show the grace and dignity on the, quote, unquote, wrong side of the tracks.” It is unusual for a picture book to take home the ALA’s most prestigious award: Most previous winners have been novels, though several poetry books have taken the prize over the years.

The Caldecott Medal went to Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear, illustrated by Sophie Blackall. The book tells the origin story of Winnie the Pooh and the Canadian veterinarian who bonded with the bear.

Rita Williams-Garcia won the Coretta Scott King award for Gone Crazy in Alabama, about a pair of sisters from Brooklyn who spend a summer in the South.

The American Library Association has a full list of the winners of these and other prizes, including the award for nonfiction and for beginning readers.

Previous Newbery Medal recipients include A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle and Lois Lowry’s The Giver.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.