Young readers celebrate at Skokie School
Twelve-year-old, Ellie Roche enjoys some pizza during Friday's celebration at Skokie School in Winnetka. Students at the school, who have participated in the Rebecca Caudill Young Reader's Book Award program had a party in the school's library. | Brian O'
Updated: March 22, 2013 6:04AM
WINNETKA — Normally eating, drinking and partying inside a library is frowned upon, but Skokie School Librarian Candy Gordon gladly made an exception for her excited students Feb. 8.
Over 40 youngsters celebrated their participation in the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award with the school’s 11th annual Caudill party. To be invited to the event, students must read at least three books from the Caudill Awards list of 20 titles.
Beginning in October, students took time out of their lunch period to stop by the library twice a week and read the various books on the Caudill list. The students who read all 20 received special recognition.
“This is a celebration of the people who do extra work,” Gordon said. “I think it’s marvelous and it’s all about reading.”
Students enjoyed food and games from each of the 20 books and took part in a special activity. Library staff had accumulated 40 items described in each book and placed them out on a table for five minutes and asked each student to write down as many as they remembered.
Items on the table included a basketball, toothbrush, popcorn, an atlas, a toy tractor, a flashlight, cowboy boots and McDonald’s fries.
Fifth -grader Mary Baillos correctly remembered 29 of the 40 items and took home a Barnes & Noble gift card for her efforts.
Each year students in fourth through eighth grade can nominate books to be considered for the Caudill award. The nominated books are then read by a panel of librarians and teachers and a list of 20 books is determined.
“It’s a total kid thing,” said assistant librarian Kathleen Al-Basit. “The kids nominate the books each year. We have (the titles) to check out here in the library and kids who read at least three can vote for their favorite.”
On Feb. 27 the students will cast their votes in the library for their favorite book as schools across Illinois take part.
“Every student votes in here on the computer and we send in every vote,” Gordon said. “Even if a book gets one vote we send it in.”
After casting their votes the students of Skokie School will wait to see if their favorite author is awarded the 2013 Caudill Award on March 15.
The award is named in honor of Rebecca Caudill who lived and wrote in Urbana, Ill. for nearly 50 years.
More information about the Caudill award is available at www.rcyrba.org.