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Lower School Library: Award Books

The Caldecott Award

The Caldecott Award

The Caldecott Medal is awarded annually by the ALA to "the artist most of the most distinguished American picture book for children."

The first Caldecott Medal was awarded in 1938. The Caldecott Medal is an award for the book's illustrator. It was inspired by the Newbery Award, which is given to an author. The medal is named in honor of the 19th century English illustrator Randolph J. Caldecott.

The Caldecott Medal is awarded by the Association for Library Service to Children which is a division of the American Library Association. For more information visit the ALSC webpage for the Caldecott Medal.

2021 Caldecott Award Winner

2018 Caldecott Award Books

The 2020 Caldecott Award winner is:

The Undefeated,” illustrated by Kadir Nelson is the 2020 Caldecott Medal winner. The book was written by Kwame Alexander and published by Versify, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.   

Did you know?

Did You Know?

In 2013 Jon Klassen won the Caldecott Medal for This is Not My Hat.  The book Extra Yarn, which Jon Klassen also illustrated, was named a Caldecott Honor book that same year.  This is the first time that an illustrator has been mentioned twice in one year.

Marcia Brown and David Wiesner are the most honored illustrators.  David Wiesner won three Caldecott Medals in 1992, 2002 & 2007.  He has also had three books named as Caldecott Honor books in 1989, 2000 & 2014.  But Marica Brown has also won three Caldecott Medals (1955, 1962 & 1983) and she has had six books named as Honor books (1948, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953 & 1954).

Leo & Diane Dillon are the only illustrators to win a Caldecott Medal two years in a row (1976 & 1977).

Usually the medal goes to just one person, but six times it has been awarded to a husband and wife illustrating team. Check the list to see if you can find which years these teams have won.

Only one book each year can win the Caldecott Medal, but other deserving books can be named "honor" books.  Each year at least one book has been named an honor book.  Some years as many as five books have been named honor books.

Usually books that win the Caldecott Medal are fairly short, but in 2008 the award went to the illustrated novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret.

The winner of the Caldecott Medal must be a citizen or resident of the United States.