The Monarch Award is a K-3 readers' choice book award.
The name Monarch was chosen because of its familiarity to K-3 children and to symbolize the growth, change and freedom that becoming a reader brings. The Monarch is designed to encourage children to read critically and become familiar with children's books, authors and illustrators. The program is open to all K-3 age children in Illinois.
I divided the nominees into two posts. I hope this allows the videos and resources to load faster. Click here to explore part one.
Pete the Cat: Rocking in my School Shoes by Eric Litwin and James Dean [HarperCollins | 2011]
Download "Rocking in My School Shoes" for FREE.
Watch Eric Litwin and James Dean perform Pete the Cat: Rocking in My School Shoes. Can you imagine if they performed in your library????
Download a Pete the Cat activity sheet.
Your library or classroom needs a groovy Pete the Cat plush, right?
Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons hits shelves on May 1, 2012.
Even Monsters Need Haircuts by Matthew McElligott [Walker and Company | 2010]
Working the night shift will be a hairy experience in a new picture book from Matthew McElligott Just before midnight, on the night of a full moon, a young barber stays out past his bedtime to go to work. Although his customers are mostly regulars, they are anything but normal-after all, even monsters need haircuts. Business is steady all night, and this barber is prepared for anything with his scissors, rotting tonic, horn polish, and stink wax. It's a tough job, but someone's got to help these creatures maintain their ghoulish good looks.
Use the Monster Machine to create your own monster. You can create over 10,000 different monster designs.
Lousy Rotten Stinkin' Grapes by Margie Palatini, illustrated by Barry Moser [Simon and Schuster | 2009]
Margie Palatini has one of the best author websites. She provides activities, videos, audio recordings, and more. Check it out!
Blackout by John Rocco [Hyperion | 2011]
When a busy family's activities come to a halt because of a blackout, they find they enjoy spending time together and not being busy for once.
Watch John Rocco's reaction to winning a 2012 Caldecott Honor.
A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip Stead, illustrated by Erin Stead [Roaring Brook Press | 2010]
Travis Jonker and I named it a best book of 2010.
Amos McGee, a gentle zookeeper, arrives promptly at work every day. The animals enjoy his company and depend on him. He plays chess with the elephant, runs races with the tortoise, sits with the penguin, lends a handkerchief to the rhino, and reads stories to owl. What will the animals do when Amos wakes up sick? Take care of him, of course! Erin Stead's awe-inspiring illustrations convey the importance of friendship and have a calming effect. Let's hope Philip and Erin Stead continue to make books together. Add this future classic to your must-read list
Anita Silvey celebrated A Sick Day for Amos McGee on National Doctor Day.
Download the Amos McGee "Get Well Soon!" card.
The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred by Samantha Vamos, illustrated by Rafael Lopez [Charlesbridge | 2011]
This is the story of how the farm maiden and all the farm animals worked together to make the rice pudding that they serve at the fiesta. With the familiarity of "The House That Jack Built," this story bubbles and builds just like the ingredients of the arroz con leche that everyone enjoys. Cleverly incorporating Spanish words, adding a new one in place of the English word from the previous page, this book makes learning the language easy and fun.
The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred is a 2012 Pura Belpre Illustrator Honor Book.
Download the discussion and activity guide for The Cazuela that the Farm Maiden Stirred.
Download the recipe for arroz con leche.
The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen [Candlewick Press | 2009]
When a circus ship runs aground off the coast of Maine, the poor animals are left on their own to swim the chilly waters. Staggering onto a nearby island, they soon win over the wary townspeople with their kind, courageous ways. So well do the critters blend in that when the greedy circus owner returns to claim them, villagers of all species conspire to outsmart the bloated blowhard.
Art and Max by David Wiesner [Clarion Books | 2010]
Travis Jonker and I named Art and Max a best book of 2010.
Am I Elephant or Piggie? Frog or Toad? Mary Richards or Rhoda Morgenstern? Now, thanks to three-time Caldecott Medal winner David Wiesner, you’ll ask yourself: Am I Art or Max?
Art and Max are lizards. Arthur is serious, while Max is impulsive and bubbling with energy. The opening spread shows Art painting a portrait while listening to Pink Floyd. Max charges into the story, nearly crashes into Art’s easel, announcing, “I can paint too, Arthur!” While Art finds this news ridiculous, he eventually concedes and lets Max join, so long as he doesn’t get in the way. This decision takes readers on a colorful journey through watercolor, acrylic, pastel, and India ink. Kids will gasp at Wiesner’s bold illustrations. An eight-year-old responded, “It felt like Art was going to leap from the page. I was afraid my clothes would get covered in paint.”
Thank you, David Wiesner, for taking readers on a colorful journey