An Award of our Own

An Award of our Own
Dani Seiss

The GDS Class of 2031 presented the eighth annual Hopper Awards ceremony, or fifth grade Book Awards in a raucous Lower School assembly on March 15. 

The awards were created in 2016, when the then fifth graders were discussing the American Library Association Awards, the John Newbery and Caldecott Medals, and wondered, “Why do only adults choose the winning books for kids?”

In coordination with LMS librarians, they decided they wanted to choose their own books and vote on them—to create their own awards ceremony—and the Hopper Awards was born.

This year, the fifth graders chose three categories: Nonfiction: Sports Biographies, Fiction: School Life, and Banned Books; with five books chosen for each category including:

Nonfiction – Sports Biographies:
Hoop Genius by John Coy
Sixteen Years in Sixteen Seconds by Paula Yoo (winner)
Fauja Singh Keeps Going by Simran Jeet Singh
Mighty Jackie by Marissa Moss
World Cup Women by Meg Walters

Fiction– School Life:
Twins by Varian Johnson and Shannon Wright
New Kid by Jerry Craft
Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney (winner) 
Big Nate by Lincoln Pierce
Dork Diaries by Rachel Renee Russell

Banned books:
Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola (winner)
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

All Lower School students attempted to read each book so they could cast their votes. Librarians read the picture books to students in younger grades during their regular library period; older students read the other books on their own. In all, students read a total of 2,460 books for the awards: 900 in the sports category, 405 in the school life category, and 1,155 for the banned books category, 

Nicely done, fifth graders!!!

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An Award of our Own
  • Middle School