Monday, May 3, 2010

Do You Have a Book to Sell? Part 2

Last week I touched on the two most serious considerations when purchasing school library books: money and shelf space.

Today, let's just suppose that here I am...a librarian with money to spend. It might be $500.00. Maybe it's $1,000.00...oh lucky me! In any case, the process is the same -- sorting through the myriad titles that are available and making my selections.

I'm going to need some help and a simple way to begin is to look at award winners and nominees. There are numerous national book awards and lists: Newbery Medal, Caldecott Medal, Charlotte Zolotow Award, Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards, Notable Children's Book List, Parent's Choice, Coretta Scott King Award, and the Cybils to name only a few.

And I certainly will want to take a look at the state awards. In California it's the California Young Reader Medal. In Arizona there's the Grand Canyon Reader's Award and so on. These
awards are particularly valuable because of the way in which the winners are selected. Generally, the books are nominated by parents, teachers, librarians and students from across the state. The list is usually narrowed down to 3-5 and then the students read and vote for their favorite books. I don't always agree with the results, but I can be sure that all the nominees are worth careful consideration.

By the time I've looked at all these possibilities, I probably already have a pretty healthy list of books, but I'm not done yet. Next week I'll talk about additional great resources for finding children's books.

Here is the answer to Friday's Famous First: "On the banks of the river Nagara, where the long-necked cormorants fish at night, there once lived a poor widow and her son." The Boy of the Three-Year Nap, Caldecott Honor book written by Dianne Snyder, illustrated by Allen Say.

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