The American Library Association (ALA) announced the winners of the 2011 Schneider Family Book Awards, which honor an author or illustrator for the artistic expression of the disability experience for child and adolescent audiences.
Recipients are selected in three categories: birth through grade school (age 0–10), middle school (age 11–13) and teens (age 13–18). Winners will receive $5,000 and a framed plaque, which will be presented in San Diego during the ALA Annual Conference in June.
The Pirate of Kindergarten written by George Ella Lyon, illustrated by Lynne Avril won the award for young children.
Ginny’s eyes play tricks and, in her world, there are two of everything. Reading, math, and kindergarten activities are a challenge. Wearing an eye patch turns her into the pirate of kindergarten, and glasses help bring her world into focus. Whimsical mixed media illustrations cleverly convey Ginny’s experiences first hand.
After Ever After written by Jordan Sonnenblick won the award for best middle school title.
Jeffrey is free of cancer, but not the fallout from the treatment. Tad, his cancer survivor buddy and he swap wisecracks as they cope with their “chemo-brain,” other cancer effects and typical 8th grade angst.
The teen award winner is Five Flavors of Dumb, written by Antony John.
Dumb is not the name Piper, a high school senior who is Deaf, would have chosen for a heavy metal band, yet she volunteers to manage this disparate group of would-be musicians. In her attempt to make Dumb profitable, Piper learns a few things about music and business, striking a chord within herself.
“All three of our winning books have strong characters with disabling conditions that are not the defining feature of their lives,” said Award Chair Julie A. Cummins. “For eight years, this award has recognized such shining examples of the growing pool of books for children and teens that artistically express disability experiences.”