As you know I am NUTS about the Newbery. I LOVE it so much that I wanted other kids to have a chance to learn about the award and get connected to it. Last year I wrote a proposal to a local library to host a Mock Newbery. They liked my proposal and agreed to give it a try. So, this year I have been busy reading lots of books to try to guess what might win the Newbery. Then I hosted two orientation meetings where kids came and learned about the Medal, the criteria, the history etc. In October I picked 5 great books from this year for kids to read. We then had book talks every other week to give kids a chance to discuss each book in depth. We were lucky enough to have the author of Keeper, Kathi Appelt, join us by Skype for the book talk about Keeper (thanks Kathi!). All of this lead up to the big day, Sunday, which was our first Mock Newbery.
I decorated each table with the book and something to remind you about the book. Then I reminded everyone about the criteria. We then talked about each book and made the "case" for our favorites. When it was time to vote, I was surprised by the results. Our winner was Out of My Mind. We picked One Crazy Summer, Keeper and Mockingbird.
So, now I am done with two Mock Newbery's, but I still am not happy with the picks so, before the real Newbery is chosen I will pick my own Mock Newbery! In the mean time I am going to be dreaming about Midwinter and all the LUCKY ALSC members who get to spend several days talking about books. Someday, I need to be on the REAL Newbery committee. Don't you think they should include a kid, for whom the books are written?