Friday, September 6, 2019

Cybils 2019 - Call for Judges

I'm honored once again to be serving as the Poetry Category Chair during Cybils 2019.

The official Call for Judges has been announced and you have until Friday, September 13 at 11:59pm EDT to apply to be a panelist or judge. Read the Call for Judges here. Anyone who reads and reviews children's and young adult books via a social media platform (a blog, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, GoodReads, etc.) is eligible to apply. If you can't volunteer to be a judge, help spread the word about Cybils on social media and nominate your favorite books. Nominations open to the public on October 1.

Laura Arnhold also wrote a great post about being a Cybils Judge. Read it here.

I've served as a panelist 5 times...4 times in Poetry and 1 time in Elementary/Middle Grade Nonfiction. It's a fun process. You get to read lots of great books and discuss them with like minded people. I'm not going to lie: It's also a lot of work, but so rewarding. The beauty of Cybils is that nominations come from the public and the judges are a mix of teachers, librarians, parents, and book bloggers. I like the emphasis that is placed on kid appeal. Often I read major award winning books and I wonder about the amount of kid appeal (or lack thereof) that they have.

I'm going to list all the categories below, but forgive me for recommending my own category. Poetry is fun to read and discuss. It also usually has fewer nominations than the other categories. In 2018 Poetry had 48 nominations.

Cybils Awards Categories

  • Fiction Picture Books & Board Books 
  • Easy Reader & Early Chapter Books
  • Elementary/Middle Grade Nonfiction 
  • Middle Grade Fiction 
  • Elementary/Middle Grade Speculative Fiction 
  • Graphic Novels 
  • Junior/Senior High Nonfiction 
  • Poetry 
  • Young Adult Speculative Fiction 
  • Young Adult Fiction 

Find Cybils on Social Media

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Paddington Party

After the success of my Trolls Party in summer 2017 and my Ferdinand Party in summer 2018, I decided to host another book to movie based party in October 2018. I settled on Paddington Bear.

We started off with a game: Orange Toss. I couldn't find orange balls so I covered plastic baseballs from the Dollar Tree in orange duct tape. I put a green tablecloth in a basket to give the kids somewhere to aim.

I read either part of Chapter 1 from A Bear Called Paddington by Michael Bond or one of the stories in Paddington's Storybook Collection.

We played Pass Paddington with a small stuffed bear that I put a Paddington tag on, like Hot Potato but with Paddington.

We made a Paper Plate Paddington Craft. I found the idea here.

The kids took home Paddington coloring sheets I found via Pinterest.

 At four parties I had 43 adults and 53 kids in attendance.

Monday, September 2, 2019

Teen Event: Galaxy Craft Night

I hosted this as part of my "A Universe of Stories" summer teen events. I kept finding galaxy painting ideas on Pinterest and decided to turn it into a program.

We made galaxy paintings, galaxy rocks, galaxy jars, and galaxy t-shirts.

I used the following ideas for guidance: