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2013 Winners

FICTION Grand-Prize Winner: The Seeds of the Milkweed

Written and illustrated by 2nd grade students from
East End Elementary School, Little Rock, Arkansas
Project Coordinators: Cathy Melvin & Karen Hicks
Principal: Mark T. Rash

See how the story of a growing milkweed fits into the monarch butterfly’s life cycle. As you turn the pages, the verse grows along with the plant. Bouncing rhymes are accompanied by bright illustrations, which bring the story to life.




NONFICTION Grand-Prize Winner: White Tails and Other White Tales

Written and illustrated by 2nd grade students from
Longfellow Elementary School, West Allis, Wisconsin
Project Coordinator: Margaret Wandsneider
Principal: Jessica Moe

Take a rhyming journey around the globe to explore the little-known world of albino animals. Along the way, learn how different animals can end up without any natural, protective coloring, and the effect that has on their lives. This beautifully crafted book adds to our knowledge of the animal world.

2013 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2013.

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2012 Winners

FICTION Grand-Prize Winner: Two Dollars, One Wallet

Written and illustrated by 3rd grade students from
William McKinley Elementary School, Burbank, CA
Project Coordinator: Shari Wendt
Principal: Roberta Kavanaugh

Money takes on a personality of its own in this unique story of a dollar bill. From printing press to your wallet, discover the amazing adventure a dollar might take to end up in your hands!


NONFICTION Grand-Prize Winner: A Kid for Jack

Written and illustrated by 4th grade students from
Piney Grove Elementary School, Kernersville, NC
Project Coordinators: Stacy McAnulty and Karen H. Davis
Principal: Susan C. Frye

Adults and kids alike will fall in love with Jack in this touching true story of one dog’s journey to find a family of his own. Through a series of lucky and some not-so-lucky events, Jack overcomes his past and finds a bright new future.

2012 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2012.

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2011 Winners

2011 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: What Does the X-Ray Say?

What Does the X-Ray Say?Written and illustrated by 2nd grade students from
Longfellow Elementary School, West Allis, WI

This reassuring tale will ease young readers’ anxiety over doctor visits and x-rays as a little girl imagines some other fascinating (and funny) examples of when x-rays might be needed.


2011 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: The Perfect Place for an Elf Owl

The Perfect Place for an Elf OwlWritten and illustrated by 1st and 2nd grade students from
Anthony T. Lane Elementary School, Alexandria, VA

In this sweet, yet educational, story about the incredible variety of owl species, a little lost elf owl searches for his mama through many diverse habitats and ecosystems and finally finds her in the perfect place to call home.


2011 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2011.

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2010 Winners


2010 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Vincent van Gogh’s Cat

Van Gogh's CatWritten and illustrated by second grade students from
East Washington Academy, Muncie, IN

Join Vincent van Gogh’s cat on a journey through some of history’s most memorable and influential paintings. From a field of sunflowers to a pond of water lilies and on to a starry night, the clever layout and elegant art will leave readers immersed in their own imaginations, daydreaming of fantastical worlds.



2010 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Houdini Was…

Houdini WasWritten and illustrated by second grade students from
White Bluffs Elementary, Richland, WA

Houdini the Hamster was so much more than just a classroom pet. She was a superhero, a spy, an escape artist, an athlete, and a clown who taught the students about responsibility, compassion, and unconditional love. Have your tissues ready when you read this positive, uplifting memorial to a most beloved pet.


2010 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2010.

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2009 Winners

2009 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Greatest Homework Excuse Book Ever

Greatest Homework Excuse Book EverWritten and illustrated by fourth grade students
Sycolin Creek Elementary School, Leesburg, VA
Project Coordinator: Leigh Anne VanderWijist
Principal: Sharon Keegan-Coppels

With a stomach that’s churning and a face that’s burning, a student must decide if he should fess up to forgetting his homework or pick a story from the Greatest Homework Excuse Book Ever! Dogs, pigs, little siblings, and aliens...or the truth? This hilarious, rhyming romp will keep kids laughing right up until the satisfying end.


2009 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Rejoice! Poetry Celebrating Life in the Amazon Rainforest

RejoiceWritten and illustrated by third grade students
Mendon Center Elementary School, Pittsford, NY
Project Coordinator: Heather Kwit
Principal: Melanie Ward

Using stunning collage artwork and text that both informs and inspires, Rejoice! introduces the endangered rainforest habitat and the diversity of life there, including howler monkeys, capybaras, piranhas, orchids, tarantulas, and more!  A concise introduction and a comprehensive glossary give curious readers even more information about the creatures who call the rainforest home.


2009 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2009.

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2008 Winners


2008 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Little Prickles

Little PricklesWritten and illustrated by seventh grade students
The Montessori Middle School, Norwalk, Connecticut
Project Coordinator: Leila Shields
Principal: Ramani Dealwis

No one wants to play with Little Prickles – he’s just too prickly! The young porcupine thinks he can win friends by giving away his quills. But without his quills, Little Prickles doesn’t feel like himself. Luckily, his forest friends rally behind him and let him know that they like him for who he is – quills and all.


2008 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: A Day on the Prairie

A Day on the Prairie Written and illustrated by third grade students
Kildeer Countryside Elementary, Long Grove, Illinois
Project Coordinator: Marilee Sarlitto and Amy VandenBerge
Principal: Heather Advani

Through graceful yet vivid sensory imagery, readers experience the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of the prairie environment. Soft colors and simple collage art bring this one-day journey to life. Additional resources about prairie plants, insects, birds and animals are also included.


2008 Grand-Prize Winner Going Green: Our Class is Going Green

Our Class is Going Green Written and illustrated by kindergarten students
Oak Park Elementary, Bartlesville, Oklahoma
Project Coordinator: Joyce Nickels and Erinn Rakes
Principal: Bobbi Sexson

Going green, not turning green! One kindergarten class is making our world a better place, one school-day at a time. With fun, scrapbook-style art and text that is both playful and informative, this delightful book helps readers build a clear and concise list of easy ways to make a positive impact on our environment


2008 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2008.

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2007 Winners


2007 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: POOR PLUTO

POOR PLUTO!Written and illustrated by third grade students
Tokay Colony Elementary School, Lodi, California
Project Coordinator: Nancy Cadena
Principal: Kevin Harkin

Pluto's not a planet anymore! To make sure he doesn't get lonely out in deep space, 16 students, 1 teacher, and 3 pet hamsters build a rocket, blast into space, and bring Pluto back to Earth. But soon after landing, he feels lonely and misses his old friends, so it's up to the students to devise a plan and send Pluto back where he belongs!


2007 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: GROWING... Farm, School and Me!

GROWING... Farm, School and Me! Written and illustrated by sixth grade students
Reiffton School, Reading, Pennsylvania
Project Coordinator: Timothy Dewalt
Principal: Gregory Fries

In this tale of changing times and changing lands, students recount the history of the land on which their school was built. Stunning watercolors images of classic Americana are paired with scenes of modern development in this poignant story that is neither sad nor bitter, but hopeful and touching as the students ponder their own future growth at school.

2007 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2007.

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2006 Winners


2006 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Problems with Pete the Pencil and Eddie the Eraser


Problems with Pete the Pencil and Eddie the Eraser Written and illustrated by third grade students
Kingsland Elementary School, Spring Valley, Minnesota
Project Coordinator:  Amanda Schwarck
Principal:  James Hecimovich

Big problems ensue for a little boy named Bradly when Pete the Pencil and Eddie the Eraser begin to disagree about who is more important! Cartoon-like illustrations and hilarious text combine to remind us about the importance of getting along. See sample pages of this book.


2006 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: What Do You Call a Rhyming Riddle? A Hinky Pinky!

What Do You Call a Rhyming Riddle? A Hinky Pinky!Written and illustrated by fifth grade students
St. Joseph Montessori School, Columbus, Ohio
Project Coordinator:  William M. Reed
Principal:  Donna Barton

Hinkie Pinkies are fun riddles that can be played anywhere, anytime. This delightful collection will have you giggling as you try to guess the answer. The quirky art that accompanies each riddle provides clues to the answers, and may inspire you to try writing your own hinky pinky! See sample pages of this book.



2006 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2006.

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2005 Winners


2005 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: The Music Inside Me


The Music Inside Me Written and illustrated by fourth and fifth grade students
Marvin Elementary School, Norwalk, Connecticut
Coordinator: Christina Andrews
Principal: Myrna Tortorello

During one special summer, a young girl and her friends learn the meaning of friendship and the power of memories. Beautiful watercolor art perfectly captures the mood of this heartwarming story.



2005 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Haiku Hike

Haiku HikeWritten and illustrated by fourth grade students
St. Mary's Catholic School, Mansfield, Massachusetts
Coordinators: Susan Tamul
Principal: Joanne Riley

When two friends set out for a walk, they realize they have forgotten their camera, so they use Haiku, the ancient form of Japanese poetry, to capture their pictures instead. A delightful mix of silhouettes and watercolor art compliments the poetry and encourages readers to "write" their own pictures. Fun nature facts included.


2005 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2005.

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2004 Winners

2004 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Nora the Nonapus

Nora the NonapusWritten and illustrated by fifth grade students
Estes Hills Elementary, Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Coordinators: Audrey Gan and Ghada Ramadan
Principal: Dale Minge

Nora is an ordinary octopus who has one big secret! When her classmates are threatened by a bully, Nora devises a plan to rescue them. But can she follow through with it, especially if it means her secret will be discovered? The delightfully detailed color-pencil illustrations help tell the exciting story of this most charming little nonapus who discovers that being different may be just what is needed to save the day. See sample pages of this book.




2004 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Color For Thought...

Color for Thought...Written and illustrated by fifth grade students
Coast Episcopal Day School, Long Beach, Mississippi
Coordinator: Reona Visser
Principal: Adrienne Ranelli

Did you know... your RED strawberry milkshake might contain bugs, we owe our lives to the BLUE blood of a crab or that prestigious and pricey PURPLE comes from a snail? Fascinating facts, intricately detailed illustrations combined with activities to try and a game to play invite the reader to think and learn about the colors that surround us every day. See sample pages of this book.


2004 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2004.

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2003 Winners


2003 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: Picture Perfect?


Picture Perfect?Written and illustrated by second grade students
Fletcher Walker Elementary, Westwood, California
Coordinator: Patricia Costa
Principal: Henry Bietz

It's School Picture Day and everyone wants to look perfect! But from getting a new perm, to having a missing tooth, to having your mom pick your clothes, looking your best is not always easy. The simple text and crayon portraits capture the hilarious picture day dilemmas faced by anyone asked to smile for the camera! See sample pages of this book.


2003 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Animalogies: A Collection of Animal Analogies

AnimalogiesWritten and illustrated by fourth grade students
Six to Six Interdistrict Magnet School, Cooperative Educational Services, Bridgeport, Connecticut
Coordinator: Kathy Brody
Principal: Leslie Alexander

Furry is to dog as Slimy is to jellyfish. Analogies have never been so much fun! Bright collage illustrations combine creatures from the animal world with a myriad of colors and shapes to demonstrate this important language pattern. Can you guess the comparison before you turn the page? See sample pages of this book.


2003 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2003.

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2002 Winners


2002 Grand-Prize Winner Fiction: A Band of Coyotes


A Band of CoyotesWritten and illustrated by fourth grade students
Mabel-Canton Elementary School, Mabel, Minnesota

You'll want to tap your toes and clap your hands as a band of coyotes lead a musical menagerie on a delightful romp through lessons of nouns and numbers. The rollicking, rhythmic verse makes for a great read aloud while the intriguing paper collage illustrations invite a closer look. Come hear the band and join in the fun! See sample pages of this book.


2002 Grand-Prize Winner Nonfiction: Who Let the Cat Out of the Bag?Who Let the Cat Out of the Bag? Written and illustrated by fourth grade students
Newcastle Avenue Elementary, Reseda, California

It's time to let the cat out of the bag! Idioms can be fun, as shown through the unique and intricate collage illustrations designed with handmade paper. The illustrations combine beautifully with the text to bring new clarity and understanding to the sometimes confusing language of idioms. This delightful book provides a great springboard for discussion of the true meaning of some of our most colorful phrases. See sample pages of this book.


2002 Commemorative Winner: September 12th…We Knew Everything Would be All Right

September 12th...We Knew Everything Would be All RightWritten and illustrated by first grade students
Masterson Elementary, Kennett, Missouri

On September 11th horrific events occurred, yet through the simple text and vibrant art of first graders, we are reminded that the world continued the next day. On each page children experience the comforts of ordinary routines, such as, their teacher reading books to them, having homework and recess, and knowing that 2 + 2 still equals 4. This is a poignant message of hope that reassures us all that even after bad things happen, tomorrow always brings a new day. See sample pages of this book.


2002 Honorable Mentions
See the list of entries which are Honorable Mention Winners for 2002.

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