Thursday, March 08, 2012

2012 Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts

The Notable Books in the Language Arts Committee, sponsored by the Children’s Literature Assembly of the National Council of Teachers of English, selects thirty titles each year that best exemplify the criteria established for the Notables Award. Books considered for this annual list are works of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry written for children, grades K-8. The books must meet one or more of the following criteria:
• deal explicitly with language, such as plays on words, word origins, or the history of language;
•demonstrate uniqueness in the use of language or style;
•invite child response or participation.
         In addition, books are to:
•have an appealing format;
•be of enduring quality;
•meet generally accepted criteria of quality for the genre in which they are written.

2012 Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts 

A Butterfly Is Patient, by Diana Hutts Aston, illustrated by Sylvia Long, published by Chronicle Books.

A Monster Calls, by Patrick Ness, published by Candlewick.

Addie on the Inside, by James Howe, published by Atheneum.

Amelia Lost: The Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart, by Candace Fleming, published by Schwartz & Wade.

Balloons over Broadway, by Melissa Sweet, published by Houghton Mifflin.

Bluefish, by Pat Schmatz, published by Candlewick.

BookSpeak: Poems about Books, by Laura Purdie Salas, illustrated by Josee Bisaillon, published by Clarion.

Breadcrumbs, by Anne Ursu, published by Walden Pond.

Dead End in Norvelt, by Jack Gantos, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Heart and Soul, by Kadir Nelson, published by Balzer + Bray.

Hound Dog True, by Linda Urban, published by Harcourt.

Inside Out & Back Again, by Thanhha Lai, published by Harper.

Lemonade: And Other Poems Squeezed from a Single Word, by Bob Raczka, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Me...Jane, by Patrick McDonnell, published by Little, Brown.

Okay for Now, by Gary Schmidt, published by Clarion.

Over and Under the Snow, by Kate Messner, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal, published by Chronicle Books.

Pablo Neruda: Poet of the People, by Monica Brown, illustrated by Julie Paschkis, published by Henry Holt.

Passing the Music Down, by Sarah Sullivan, illustrated by Barry Root, published by Candlewick.

Requieum: Poems of the Terezin Ghetto, by Paul Janezko, published by Candlewick.

Shout! Shout it Out!, by Denise Fleming, published by Henry Holt.

Stars, by Mary Lynn Ray, illustrated by Marla Frazee, published by Beach Lane.

The Cazuela That the Farm Maiden Stirred, by Samantha R. Vamos, illustrated by Rafael Lopez, published by Charlesbridge.

The Cheshire Cheese Cat, by Carmen Agra Deedy and Randall Wright, illustrated by Barry Moser, published by Peachtree.

The Friendship Doll, by Kirby Larson, published by Delacorte.

The Great Wall of Lucy Wu, by Wendy Wan-long Shang, published by Scholastic.

The Scorpio Races, by Maggie Stiefvater, published by Scholastic.

These Hands, by Margaret H. Mason, illustrated by Floyd Cooper, published by Houghton Mifflin.

True…Sort of, by Katherine Hannigan, published by Greenwillow.

Underground, by Shane W. Evans, published by Roaring Brook Press.

Won Ton: A Cat Tale Told in Haiku, by Lee Wardlaw, illustrated by Eugene Yelchin, published by Henry Holt.

NCBLA 2012 Committee: April Bedford—Chair
Donalyn Miller, Nancy Roser, Tracy Smiles, Yoo Kyung Sung, Barbara Ward, Trish Bandre
Mary Lee Hahn—Past Chair


  1. Love this list. I've read 21 of 30. Adding the other nine to my "to read" list.

  2. Thank you for this list. I am sure you were missing this process.

  3. Anonymous9:42 AM

    Woohoo! Best news in ages--thanks for sharing!

  4. Fantastic list! Congrats to all involved.

  5. Terrific list-thanks for sharing with us. More to read-hurrah!

  6. Awesome list... I will make sure to order these titles with some funds that our library just got! Perfect timing... I need to take time to go to the booksotre and start reading these titles... Fun!

  7. Thank you for the list! I'm a speech/language therapist and I'm always on the look-out for books that match your criteria.

  8. Me-wow! I am honored! =^..^=

  9. So, so honored to be part of this amazing list - thanks for sharing!

  10. Anonymous8:50 AM

    So very honored to be part of this list of amazing books and writers - Thanks for the post!

  11. I love the list. You have some awesome authors listed.


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