Tuesday, December 22, 2015

We've Come to a Newbery Consensus

This afternoon from 2:30-4:30, 15 students and 3 adults sat in a circle attempting to come to a consensus about which book should win the 2016 Newbery Award and which, if any, should get honors. We had never done this before and had no idea how it was all going to turn out.  Would we be twiddling our thumbs by 3:00?  Would we need more time? Who knew? We probably could have used another half hour or so.  We did, however, manage to come to a consensus.  The "Starbucks" helped along with the pile of sweets.  Isn't that what they will have the weekend of January 8-10 in Boston this year?  Now we are totally DYING to know what they decide!

Private meeting.  No one disturbed us for 2 hours.
Cupcake in the ice cream cone

 Does this look like the real committee or what?  I went to Starbucks yesterday and asked for the red cups.
I brought in hot cocoa mix and voila! We are the authentic committee!
 Check out the SmartBoard.  We used images of the covers of the book to guide us.  Once a book was eliminated we deleted the image.  We started off with 30 books.  This is pretty early on since there are still 22 books up there.
 Busy at work discussing good books!

 Could we have any more snacks?!

Hot cocoa with a glimpse of someone's list.  

At the "midnight hour" this is what we came up with:

2016 Newbery Gold
The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley

2016 Newbery Honors
Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley
Echo by Pam Munoz Ryan
The Marvels by Brian Selznick

The Two Hold Outs
Lost in the Sun by Lisa Graff*
Winne: The True Story of the Real Bear that Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh by Sally Walker**

*This is where we got a glimpse of how challenging it must be to come to a consensus.  One boy really felt strongly about Lost in the Sun.  He was not going to budge.  We could see him getting emotional.  He was attached to that book, and that was perfectly ok, except that we ran out of time.  So, we kept it on the table.  

**Another student said "Winnie is such a sweet story" and it deserved to win.  No budging there, as much as we tried and again, we had to leave.  My prediction?  Maybe we would have been swayed to include Lost in the Sun as another honor but I don't think Winnie would have made the cut.  Perhaps it will get a Sibert and we will all be happy.

I'm pleased!  A great experience with a great outcome!  Looking forward to our debates beginning on January 4, and of course, the true reveal on January 11.  Happy Reading!

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