News: More “Bests,” New Online Classes, Mini-Grants, and More

McDermott1Caldecott Medalist Gerald McDermott Dies:  Author, illustrator, and filmmaker Gerald McDermott died on December 26 at age 71. McDermott was a devoted, lifelong artist and was avidly interested in world mythologies. Early in his career, he created animated short films based on folklore and was a friend and colleague of mythologist and writer Joseph Campbell, becoming the first fellow of the Joseph Campbell Foundation.

McDermott also wrote and illustrated many picture books, among them Anansi the Spider: A Tale from Ashanti (1972) and Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Pacific Northwest (1993), both of which were awarded Caldecott Honors. He won the 1975 Caldecott Medal for Arrow to the Sun: A Tale from the Pueblo. McDermott’s illustrations are dominated by bright, stylized forms, which often draw from indigenous art and highlight his fascination with the origins of stories.

Charlotte Zolotow Award:  Each Kindness written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E. B. Lewis, and published by Nancy Paulsen Books / Penguin Group, is the winner of the 2013 Charlotte Zolotow Award.

The committee selected three Honor Books:  Flabbersmashed About You written by Rachel Vail, illustrated by Yumi Heo (Feiwel and Friends); Me and Momma and Big John written by Mara Rockliff, illustrated by William Low (Candlewick Press); and Sleep Like a Tiger written by Mary Logue, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski (Houghton Mifflin).

Nine books were named Highly Commended:

Auntie Yang’s Great Soybean Picnic written by Ginnie Lo.  Illustrated by Beth Lo.  Lee & Low Books

Helen’s Big World:  The Life of Helen Keller  written by Doreen Rappaport.  Illustrated by Matt Tavares.  Disney / Hyperion

Monet Paints a Day  written by Julie Danneberg.  Illustrated by Caitlin Heimerl.  Charlesbridge

No Go Sleep!  written by Kate Feiffer.  Illustrated by Jules Feiffer.  A Paula Wiseman Book / Simon & Schuster

Oh, No!  written by Candace Fleming.  Illustrated by Eric Rohmann.  Schwartz & Wade Books

Spike, the Mixed-up Monster  written by Susan Hood.  Illustrated by Melissa Sweet.  A Paula Wiseman Book / Simon & Schuster

Tea Cakes for Tosh  written by Kelly Starling Lyons.  Illustrated by E. B. Lewis.  Putnam

Underground  written and illustrated by Denise Fleming.  Beach Lane

We March  written and illustrated by Shane W. Evans.  A Neal Porter Book / Roaring Brook Press

Even More Best Books for Youth 2012:

 Booklist Magazine:

The Guardian (United Kingdom):

Teens and Tweens Go Green: Art-based and Eco-friendly Programs for Libraries:  An Infopeople online course, January 29 to February 25, 2013

Teens and pre-teens appreciate and celebrate the environment. You can support their interests by involving them in hands-on programs with environmentally responsible themes. This course will bring the fun back into your programming! You will learn to:

–Rethink “art” and look at everyday objects in new ways
–Discover methods and materials for reusing, recycling, and repurposing
–Demonstrate and teach art skills
–Plan programs and events that are art-based and eco-friendly

Fee: $75 for those in the California library community and Infopeople Partners, $150 for all others.  For a complete course description and to register go to

NEH Needs Nonfiction Nominations: The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) seeks nominations for a new nonfiction booklist for elementary, middle, and high-school aged children.

Aimed at young readers who want to delve more deeply into areas such as history, biography, archaeology, or philosophy, this new list will supplement NEH’s popular summer reading list, which, since its inception in 1988, has been heavily weighted towards works of fiction. NEH’s new nonfiction list will reflect the new Common Core State Standards, which place a greater emphasis on nonfiction material, and will serve as a resource for teachers and parents of children who want to read about the tragic Irish potato famine of the 1840s and 50s or the infamous Salem witch trials in addition to—or instead of—Harry Potter and The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.

NEH seeks your assistance in building its first nonfiction Summertime Reading List. We invite you to nominate outstanding nonfiction books for any or all of the following three age groups: 5-8 years old; 9-13 years old; and 14-17 years old, and tell NEH why your selections should be recommended for a new generation of readers.

Nominations may be made online at: Recommended titles should have a strong humanities content, be of lasting value to readers, and readily available in print. Final selection of the books will be made by an advisory board composed of educators, library and information science specialists, historians, scholars of literature, and experts in childhood literacy, and will be announced in 2013.

ALSC launches application for Everyone Reads @ your library mini-grants

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) is now accepting applications for mini-grants intended to prepare libraries to incorporate Día into their existing programs, throughout the year.  Libraries will use these mini-grants to initiate a Día Family Book Club Program.  These mini-grants are part of ALSC’s Everyone Reads @ your library grant, funded by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

Intended as an expansion of El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Día), the mini-grants will be awarded to libraries that demonstrate a need to better address the diverse backgrounds within their communities.

Up to 12 mini-grants will be awarded at $5,000 each.  In addition to these mini-grants, funding from this grant will also allow ALSC to create a Día Family Book Club Toolkit that will be accessible to all. For more information, and the application form, go to  The deadline to accept mini-grant applications is Friday, February 1, 2013.

Día is an every day celebration of children, families and reading that emphasizes the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.  Día was founded in 1996 by children’s book author Pat Mora, who proposed conceptually linking the existing Children’s Day with literacy.  Día’s primary goals are to honor children and their diverse backgrounds; to encourage reading and literacy; and to promote library collections and programs that reflect our plurality, on a daily basis.

The founding partner of Día is REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Literacy and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking.

The mini-grants are part of the activities leading up to Dia’s 17th anniversary, culminating on April 30, 2013:  Dia: Diversity in Action.   For more information, visit


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