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Garden City School Library: Mock Caldecott

How It Works

Ms. Moore reads more than 100 new picture books each year, and chooses about a dozen to share with grades K and 1 during second trimester. After each readaloud, the students discuss what they liked, what they didn't like, and whether the book should remain in the running. In February, they cast ballots for the winner out of our short list. Then we compare our winner to the American Library Association Caldecott Award winner.

Past Mock Caldecott Winners


2022: Off-Limits


2021: Snail Crossing


2020: Who Wet My Pants?
(second GC win in a row for Zachariah!)


2019: Niblet and Ralph


2018: Creepy Pair of Underwear!


2017: School's First Day of School
(second GC win for Christian Robinson!)


2016: I'm Trying to Love Spiders


2015: Gaston


2014: Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great


2013: This is Not My Hat (ALA Winner!)

2023 Nominees

All book summaries courtesy of Goodreads. 


Some of These are Snails - Illustrated and written by Carter Higgins

From the creative mind behind Circle Under Berry comes this deceptively simple concept book that explores sorting, classification, and patterns as it teases the brain in unusual ways. With an elegant and simple approach, this thought-provoking book shows young readers that even the most familiar things can be seen from infinite perspectives. 




100 Mighty Dragons All Named Broccoli - Illustrated by Lian Cho, written by David LaRochelle

High on a mountain live 100 mighty dragons all named Broccoli. When a tremendous wind blows half the dragons away, ten others sail off to become professional surfers in Hawaii. The oldest and youngest dragons take a train to New York City to start their own heavy metal band. And a mysterious wizard turns four more into a unicorn, a werewolf, a zombie, and a tiny pink poodle. Now how many dragons are left? 


Big - Illustrated and written by Vashti Harrison

The first picture book written and illustrated by award-winning creator Vashti Harrison traces a child’s journey to self-love and shows the power of words to both hurt and heal. With spare text and exquisite illustrations, this emotional exploration of being big in a world that prizes small is a tender portrayal of how you can stand out and feel invisible at the same time.




You are a Story - Illustrated by Kristen and Kevin Howdeshell, written by Bob Raczka

Poet Bob Raczka’s You are a Story highlights all of the nuance and potential of a growing person’s identity, delighting in the things that make us special and connect us to others. Text and illustrations replete with inventive imagery and appealing metaphors show how we all live as individuals and citizens of the world. A child, an animal, a body of water, a friend, a mystery, one-of-a-kind ... You are and could be so many things, but whatever you choose to do, it’s your life to write.


In the Night Garden - Illustrated and written by Carin Berger

In the night garden, nothing is as it seems and everything is made new. Blinking stars and pale moonlight might reveal a lone cat tiptoeing across a roof, luminous flowers unfurling in the cool air, a mama fox escorting her sleepy cubs home. Listen closely and you might hear the wind blowing through the trees, the murmur of a slow stream, or the gentle song of crickets and bullfrogs, lulling you to sleep.


You Rule! - Illustrated and written by Rilla Alexander

How far can you go? How much do you know? How kind are you? How much do I love you? These are the impossible questions every child has asked, and every parent has struggled to answer. This is a wonderfully affirmative and aspirational book of possibilities and exploration, a fantastic linguistic calibration/celebration of bravery, kindness, love, and so much more.





Standards Addressed

AASL: I.B.3 - Generating products that illustrate learning; II.B.1 - Interacting with learners who reflect a range of perspectives; II.C.1 - Learners exhibit empathy with and tolerance for diverse ideas by: 1. Engaging in informed conversation and active debate. 2. Contributing to discussions in which multiple viewpoints on a topic are expressed.; III.B - Learners participate in personal, social, and intellectual networks; III.D.1 - Actively contributing to group discussions; V.A.1 - Reading widely and deeply in multiple formats and write and create for a variety of purposes.

Common Core: SL.1 Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 1/2 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups; SL.2 Ask and answer questions about/recount or describe key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media; RL.1 Ask and answer questions about key details in a text; RL.7 Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events; W.1 Write opinion pieces in which they name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure

Rhode Island Cross-Curricular Proficiencies: Collaboration - Incorporate diverse perspectives to promote an exchange of ideas with reasoning and evidence; Communication - Organize information to communicate ideas and responses when using any mode of communication

Rhode Island School Library Curriculum Priority Skills: 1.1 - Develops own opinion about a topic with evidence to support the opinion; 3.2 - Participates in collaborative conversations with peers and adults to share ideas and information