This past fall, the Columbia Public Library hosted its seventh season of the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Awards program. Youth in grades 4-8 were invited to join us twice per month to discuss possible Newbery Medal contenders for 2019. At these interactive sessions, we discussed six Newbery contender books, and participants were able to defend the book that they felt deserved the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Award.
We read the following books:
- “Louisiana’s Way Home” by Kate DiCamillo
- “Nightbooks” by J.A. White
- “The Journey of Little Charlie” by Christopher Paul Curtis
- “Endling: The Last” by Katherine Applegate
- “You Go First” by Erin Entrada Kelly
- “The Girl Who Drew Butterflies: How Maria Merian’s Art Changed Science” by Joyce Sidman
Our group looked at criteria similar to those used by the Newbery Medal selection committee when considering top book selections.
- Was the book well organized?
- Did it have a clear beginning, middle and end?
- Is the book well rounded?
- Are the characters well described? Are they 3D or flat?
- Are you able to imagine what they look like?
- Is the style of writing consistent throughout the book?
And the winner for the 2019 Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Award is “Endling: The Last” by Katherine Applegate!