Newbery Award


  1. an annual award for the most distinguished book for juveniles.


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More About Newbery Award

What is the Newbery Award?

The Newbery Award is an award given each year by the American Library Association (ALA) to the author of the book that the association considers the best contribution to American children’s literature of the past year.

It is formally called the Newbery Medal or, more fully, the John Newbery Medal. 

The Newbery Award is widely considered one of the most prestigious and well-known honors for children’s literature, along with the Caldecott Award (also called the Caldecott Medal), which is awarded (also by the ALA) to the artist of the book that the association selects as the best American illustrated children’s book of the past year.

When is the Newbery Award given?

The Newbery Award is usually presented during a ceremony on the last Monday in January. It is given by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the ALA. Though it is given in the first month of the year, the award is for works released in the previous year (allowing judges enough time to review all of the books).

During the ceremony, the association also presents the Caldecott Medal and other awards, including the Coretta Scott King Book Awards, which honor African American authors and illustrators.

The 2024 Newbery Award is scheduled to be presented on January 22.

More information and context on the Newbery Award

The Newbery Award was established in the 1920s. It is named after John Newbery, a publisher of children’s books sometimes called “the father of children’s literature.”

Some well-known books for which authors have been awarded the Newbery Award are Holes by Louis Sachar, Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson, A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle, Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli, Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary, Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor, and From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg.

The winning author receives a physical medal. A metallic seal depicting the medal can then be added to the cover of the book in future printings. A book whose author is nominated for the Newbery Award but does not win is labeled as a Newbery Honor Book.

What are some terms that often get used in discussing the Newbery Award?

How is the Newbery Award discussed in real life?

The Newbery Award is considered one of the most prestigious awards for children’s literature. Many people are familiar with the awards due to the seals that are placed on the covers of books by winning authors.


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True or False?

The Newbery Award honors outstanding illustrators of children’s books.