Children's Book Award Study
The Caldecott Medal
Grade Level Equivalent: 4.4
Chris Van Allsburg does an amazing job of creating realistic sketches to illustrate this book. The jungle creatures really come to life every time you flip the page. I had never read this book before, although I saw the movie when I was very young and it scared me to death. The book is not nearly as frightening as the movie but the story puts any child's imagination to use.
Teaching Ideas: Animal studies, Fantasy/Imagination study
Grandfather's Journey 1994
Grade Level Equivalent: 4.2
The illustrations in this book are incredible! I enjoyed this book because I think it addressed the feeling of homesickness and also not feeling as though you fit in to one place.
Teaching Idea: The study of world cultures and geography, generations and immigration
Snowflake Bentley 1999
Smoky Night 1995
Grade Level Equivalent: 2.5
This book is beautiful; not just based on the pictures alone, but on the emotion that it triggers. Riots like this happen a lot and in a lot of different parts of the world. I would read this book to my class today as a way to explain the riots in Ferguson, MO. A big part of this book is the discrimination between the neighbors and Daniel's family. In the end he realizes it doesn't matter what the skin color or culture, everyone can be friends once they get to know each other.
Teaching Ideas: History of civil rights, community building, introduction to current events
My Friend Rabbit 2003
Grade Level Equivalent: 2.3
This is a simpler yet for younger ages. I love the artwork, especially the colors of the different animals. The size comparison of the animals is realistic and the images are sure to make you laugh.
Teaching Ideas: Friendship and patience, animals, problem solving skills
Grade Level Equivalent: 4.1
The illustrator, Mary Azarian, does a fantastic job of portraying a beautiful, snowy Vermont winter. She helps to tell the story of "Snowflake" Bentley through her drawings which is appropriate because "Snowflake" Bentley told the story of snowflakes through his camera lens. I think this book is a great tool for a teacher because it can help to teach several different subjects and objectives. Children will love to learn the secret of snowflakes just as much as "Snowflake" Bentley loved to discover it.
Teaching Ideas: Weather, geography, seasons, biographies,