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Children’s Book Committee – September 2018 Pick

September 6, 2018

Survival Tails: The Titanic
by Katrina Charman


With the help of friends, four-legged Mutt sneaks aboard the Titanic to reunite with his beloved, young owner, Alice.

Our Young Reviewer Says:

“This book about the Titanic is told in the voices of the animals on the ship. I like that because it makes the story less freaky, than if it was told from a human perspective. At first I didn’t want to read it, and thought it would be too freaky, but I decided to start with the Fact File at the end of the book, which got me interested and helped ease into the book. After that, it was gripping and I didn’t want to put it down. There was suspense when I thought the father in the story was going to die, and then relief when he didn’t.”

– Maizie, 9 Years Old, Washington, DC.

Young people who are interested in reviewing are invited to do so as we welcome the individual perspective of our age appropriate readers. If you are interested in being a reviewer, contact

See our past monthly picks.

BookFest @ Bank Street 2018!

August 21, 2018

keywords: BookFest @ Bank Street 2018, Adam Gidwitz


The Center for Children’s Literature at Bank Street College is thrilled to announce the program for the 47th annual BookFest!  This will be BookFest’s 9th year at Bank Street.  Our keynote speaker will be the delightful and humorous Newbery Honor winner, Adam Gidwitz, author of The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or the Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog. 


Register Now

Schedule of Events

9:00 – 9:30 a.m.

Registration, light breakfast and coffee

9:30 – 9:35/Auditorium

Welcome Remarks

Cynthia Weill, Director, Center for Children’s Literature

Bank Street College of Education

9:35 – 10:25 am/Auditorium

Collaborative Couples in Kid Lit

Candace Fleming and Eric Rohman, Strongheart: Wonder Dog of the Silver Screen

Pete Parnell and Justin Richardson, And Tango Makes Three

Wade Hudson and Cheryl Willis Hudson, We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices

Moderator: Shelley Diaz, School Library Journal

10:25 – 11:15/Auditorium

Authors/Illustrators: School Visits and Their Impact on Practice

Adam Gidwitz, The Unicorn Rescue Society series

Rita Williams Garcia, Clayton Byrd Goes Underground

Kat Yeh, The Way to BEA

Stephen Savage, Jack B. Ninja

Moderator: Emma Otheguy, Ph.D. Children’s Book Author

11:15 – 11:30 a.m.


11: 30 – 11:50 a.m./Auditorium

Writing Boxes: The Reading/Writing Connection for Supporting Literacy in the Library

Lisa Von Drasek, Curator, Kerlan Collection, University of Minnesota

11:50 – 12:50/Classrooms

Book Discussion Sessions (out of courtesy for all session participants you are kindly requested to read all of the books listed for your group prior to attending BookFest)

12:50 – 1:45 pm/Cafeteria

Pick up Lunch, dine in the cafeteria or lobby

Lunchtime Autographing Session in the lobby

1:45 – 2:35/Auditorium

Bringing the Real World to Life! Illustration in Informational Books

John Parra, Frida Kahlo and her Animalitos

Roxie Munro, Rodent Rascals

Melissa Sweet, Some Writer! The Story of E.B. White

Maira Kalman, Bold and Brave: Ten Heroes Who Won Women the Right to Vote

Zeke Peña, Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide

Moderator: Gillian Engberg, Children’s Literature Consultant

2:35 – 3:05/Auditorium

Closing Keynote

Adam Gidwitz, The Unicorn Rescue Society series

3:00 – 4:00/Lobby

Autographing Session

Books for sale from the Bank Street Book Store


Thanks to Epic!  the  program will be livestreamed by KidLit TV.  You can also access the archived footage after the event.

Thanks in advance to our wonderful sponsors.  Their contributions help keep the cost of BookFest affordable for everyone:

Abrams, Charlesbridge, Disney Book Group, Epic!, Getty, Holiday House, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Kane Press, Lerner,  KidLit TV, Lee & Low Books, Little, Brown and Company, Penguin Random House, Scholastic


The program will take place in the Tabas Auditorium at Bank Street College, 610 West 112th Street between Riverside and Broadway.  Take the 1 train to 110th Street.  If you are taking the 2 or 3 trains get off at 96th Street and continue on the 1 to 110th.   Otherwise, you will be several blocks out of your way.

Still have questions?  Contact

Children’s Book Committee – August 2018 Pick

July 25, 2018

Woodrow at Sea
by Wallace Edwards


A young elephant develops a friendship with a rescued mouse as they weather a storm, encounter sea creatures, sing together, and return home. Animal watercolor-ink illustrations.

Our Young Reviewer Says:

This book is excellent and different because it only has pictures, and doesn’t have words. The story is about George going somewhere and seeing his friend, Mouse, and scouting a cool sea creature. I liked the part when they saw a purple cool sea creature.

– Sydnee, 8 Years Old, Brooklyn

Young people who are interested in reviewing are invited to do so as we welcome the individual perspective of our age appropriate readers. If you are interested in being a reviewer, contact

See our past monthly picks.

Children’s Book Committee – July 2018 Pick

June 25, 2018

A Lady Has the Floor
by Kate Hannigan


Teacher, lawyer, and candidate in 1880’s presidential campaign, this courageous, determined suffragette broke down barriers of inequality. Quote integrated in folk art illustrations. Extensive back matter.

Our Young Reviewer Says:

This is a great book! I like that it is about history and is also entertaining. It is a true story about Belva Lockwood, the first woman to run for president over 100 years ago. The book tells about all the difficulties she had to overcome to do what she wanted to do, just because she was a woman. I felt bad for the women back then and glad that someone like Belva was there. I liked the timeline at the back of the book, because it went beyond her lifetime to tell about other political women. I liked the illustrations. They were interesting in the way they were drawn with a broken pottery effect. I also liked seeing the photograph of her at the end of the book.

Maizie, Washington D.C., Age 9.

Young people who are interested in reviewing are invited to do so as we welcome the individual perspective of our age appropriate readers. If you are interested in being a reviewer, contact

See our past monthly picks.

2018 Summer Reading Lists

June 14, 2018

Allie Jane Bruce’s 2018 Summer Reading Lists are here!  They include her tips for making summer reading a non-chore and information about visiting the Bank Street Library if you’re in town.  Print, share, and enjoy!

Lower School (Pre-K through Kindergarten)
Middle School (1st through 4th grade)
Upper School (5th through 8th grade)

Elementary Teachers, Your Students Can Help Choose the Winners of Two International Children’s Book Awards in 2018-2019

June 11, 2018

Want your students to practice their reasoning, persuasive speaking and to sharpen their visual skills while they participate in the selection of Bank Street’s Center for Children’s Literature’s annual best picture and best science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) book?  Join schools across the United States and around the world in making voting part of your elementary school curriculum.

Irma Black Logo_ReynoldsFirst and Second grade classes may participate in selection of The Irma Simonton Black and James H. Black Award for Excellence in Children’s Literature (Irma Black Award). The award goes to an outstanding book for young children – a book in which text and illustrations are inseparable, each enhancing and enlarging on the other to produce a singular whole. The Irma Black Award is unusual in that children are the final judges of the winning book.

Follow the links for more information  about the Irma Black Award  and to see a list of 2018 winners.  Classroom registration for 2019.

UnknownThird and Fourth grade classes are invited to jury the Cook Prize 2018.  The Cook Prize honors the best STEM book of the year published for children eight to ten. It is the only national children’s choice award honoring a STEM title. Follow the links for more information about the Cook Prize and a list of 2018 winners.  School registration for 2019. 




Comments from teachers:

Irma Black

The Irma Black Award has been a constant in our library curriculum for the past several years.  Students are always tickled by the announcement that only they (and not we teachers) are permitted to vote. This sense of agency that this “kids’ choice” award brings is so powerful, and perhaps the greatest gift of participation. Over the course of the reading, children practice stating and defending their opinions; learn vocabulary and appreciation for parts of picture books. e.g., artist’s style (cartoony, realistic, moody, etc.) and medium (crayon, ink, paint, watercolor, etc.); fontfull-page spread; borders; gutter; etc.; and learn concepts of voting (privacy, diversity of opinion).  Not to mention, they get to know four outstanding picture books really well!

Cheryl Wolf
The Neighborhood School (PS 363)
New York, New York


For More Information:

Watch the 2018 Irma Black and Cook Prize Award Ceremony with award winning author and keynote speaker Laura Vaccaro Seeger.

Publishers Weekly summary of the 2018 awards ceremony.

See below for a slide show of the 2018 deliberation and voting process at Bank Street School.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Please share this information with your fellow educators and librarians.  Everyone is invited to participate!



Still have questions?  Contact Dr. Cynthia Weill at

Children’s Book Committee – June 2018 Pick

May 25, 2018

Baby Monkey, Private Eye
By Author/Illustrator: Brian Selznick and David Serlin


Baby Monkey succeeds as a private investigator, though he struggles to put his pants on. Elaborate pencil drawings and humorous back matter.

Our Young Reviewer Says:

Stefano loved that this was a chapter book that he could easily read all by himself. The words were fairly easy, but the illustrations gave a lot more meaning and humor to the text. It is a new favorite book for him. The illustrations were so fabulous and funny, they really carried and enhanced the story. Stefano realized right away that the author/illustrator was the same as the story The Invention of Hugo Cabret and enjoyed finding all the little jokes in the pictures.

Stefano (via Stefano’s Mom) , 6, East Hampton

Young people who are interested in reviewing are invited to do so as we welcome the individual perspective of our age appropriate readers. If you are interested in being a reviewer, contact

See our past monthly picks.

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