Goal: The Newbery Award Books


As I write my first blog post of this amazing adventure, a huge heap of things I plan to bring with me is staring me down. It is overflowing from a blue storage bin; the least bit organized. I have a pretty decent to do list but I find myself on the couch watching Bachelor in Paradise contestants on Ellen.  

Overflowing from this blue storage bin are quite a few books. While teaching third grade, I quickly found that I love reading children’s novels. I prided myself this past year that I read over 10 novels with my students, some that have become my favorite books.

This brings me to a goal that I am setting for myself, and I would love for you to participate.

I will read all of the Newbery Award books from 1922- present during my Peace Corps Service (27 months).


The Newbery Medal is awarded annually by the American Library Association for the most distinguished American children’s book published the previous year. The purpose of the Newbery Medal is “To encourage original creative work in the field of books for children. To emphasize to the public that contributions to the literature for children deserve similar recognition to poetry, plays, or novels. To give those librarians, who make it their life work to serve children’s reading interests, an opportunity to encourage good writing in this field. (”

Why is this a good idea for me?

It is important for teachers to know good books. While teaching reading, I referenced this list many times, yet I have only read a handful.

It is  a timeless list. Some of the most memorable books from my childhood are on this list ( A Wrinkle in Time, Island of The Blue Dolphins, Holes) and they continue to be popular today.

This is a great way to stay connected with my former students and nephews: Those that would like to participate can connect with me through Kaizena (code:c7t4n). I may have to ask someone to send me the next book on the list 🙂

A library of great books for Samoa.  Even though I do not know where I will be placed in Samoa, I believe there will be a special place for a collection of Newbery Medal books to live and be read.  

How will it work?

If you have taught with me, been my student, been a parent of a student, or you are friends and family, you know that most things I do are pretty informal. I tend to not play by the rules and I like to just go with however it turns out. So, we will see how it goes and I will do my best to have a bit of formality to this daunting task. 

Feel free to start with me in October as I read the 1922 Newbury Award book, The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem Van Loon. I created a Kaizena space to discuss the books (code: c7t4n), but I am not sure what my internet access will be in Samoa. 

I also do not have all of these books, so your participation in sending them to me is important!

This is a beautiful list of remarkable books that I am excited to read. I hope you can join me for a few, or the whole list.

newbery medal winners 1922-present


Thanks for reading,



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