The judges for these unique book awards, which are the only awards judged by active classroom teachers, will this year come from Wales, with the 2018 UKLA International Conference, at which the eventual winners are announced, being held in Cardiff.


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The judges for these unique book awards, which are the only awards judged by active classroom teachers, will this year come from Wales, with the 2018 UKLA International Conference, at which the eventual winners are announced, being held in Cardiff.

There are 8 groups of judges in total covering the three age categories and they have until mid-March to read the longlisted books, discuss them with their group leaders, and share them with pupils. All groups will then meet together for the difficult task of choosing their shortlist of 6 books in each category.

Headteachers welcomed the opportunity for their teachers to widen their knowledge of recent children’s titles. For UKLA, giving classroom practitioners the opportunity to read a number of new children’s books is as important as finding an overall winner. Research carried out by members of UKLA (Cremin et al 2008) clearly demonstrated the links between teachers’ knowledge of children’s books and the likelihood of pupils becoming successful readers. Despite this evidence, teachers are seldom given time to read new books or funding to purchase them when they do.

UKLA are grateful for the continued support of the award sponsors, which help the awards to grow and develop each year. Micro Librarian Services (MLS), Lovereading4schools and Lovereading4kids, recognise the value of the judging experience for schools and teachers:

‘Lovereading4schools and its sister site Lovereading4kids is very excited and proud to be a co-sponsor of the UKLA Book Awards 2018. The way UKLA work with schools and pupils complements Lovereading’s approach of using book experts and children reviewers to provide good, trusted guidance for teachers and parents that can be hard to find. We are looking forward to sharing the longlisted, shortlisted and winning books with all the parents and schools who use our websites.’ Robert Prime Director of Lovereading Ltd

The UKLA Selection Panel, chaired by Lynda Graham, whittled down the 361 publisher submissions to arrive at a set of longlists, which excitingly feature books in translation in every category and more nonfiction titles than ever. They were pleased to highlight exciting debut authors as well as established and familiar names in children’s literature. Of particular note is the success of small publishing houses like Barrington Stoke, Otter-Barry Books, Gecko Press and Tiny Owl. Lynda Graham says: “the quality of submissions this year was of a particularly high standard and the panel had no easy task, but we are confident that the teachers and schools involved in the judging will benefit enormously from the impact of these quality texts in their schools” All of the books exemplify the award criteria of writing which offers language rich in layered meanings, imaginative expression and exciting vocabulary. Where present, high quality illustration is also an important feature of the chosen texts.

Longlist 3-6

Pigeon P.I.Meg McLarenAndersen Press
Under the Same SkyBritta TeckentrupCaterpillar Books
The Night GardenerEric and Terry FanFrances Lincoln
Grandad’s Secret GiantDavid LitchfieldFrances Lincoln
Don’t Cross the Line!Isabel Minós MartinsBernardo P CarvalhoDaniel HahnGecko Press
My Pictures after the StormEric VielléDaniel HahnGecko Press
Odd Dog OutRob BiddulphHarperCollins
Oi Dog!Kes and Claire GrayJim FieldHodder
The Darkest DarkChris HadfieldThe Fan BrothersMacmillan
The Wolf Who Cried BoyJames O’NeillRussell AytoPicture Corgi
Grumpy FrogEd VerePuffin
The Storm Whale in WinterBenji DaviesSimon & Schuster
You Must Bring a HatSimon PhilipKate HindleySimon & Schuster
My Name is not RefugeeKate MilnerThe Bucket List
A Bottle of HappinessPippa GoodhartEhsan AbdollahiTiny Owl Publishing
Old HatEmily GravettTwo Hoots
Colin and Lee, Carrot and PeaMorag HoodTwo Hoots
A Perfect DayLane SmithTwo Hoots
Goodnight EveryoneChris HaughtonWalker Books
A First Book of AnimalsNicola DaviesPetr HoraĉekWalker Books
A Child of BooksOliver Jeffers and Sam WinstonWalker Books
Counting with Tiny CatViviane SchwarzWalker Books
It Starts with a SeedLaura KnowlesJennie WebberWords & Pictures

Longlist 7-11

The White FoxJackie MorrisBarrington Stoke
Good Dog McTavishMeg RosoffGrace EastonBarrington Stoke
The Song From Somewhere ElseA.F.HarroldLevi PinfoldBloomsbury
Lesser Spotted AnimalsMartin BrownDavid Fickling Books
Fish BoyChloe DaykinRichard JonesFaber & Faber
The Legend of Podkin One-EarKieran LarwoodDavid WyattFaber & Faber
Aubrey and the Terrible LadybirdsHoratio ClareJane MatthewsFirefly Press
Yours Sincerely, GiraffeMegumi IwasaJun TakabatakeCathy HiranoGecko Press
What Not to do if you Turn InvisibleRoss WelfordHarperCollins
Rabbit and Bear: The Pest in the NestJulian GoughJim FieldHodder
Welcome to NowhereElizabeth LairdLucy EldridgeMacmillan
The Road to Ever AfterMoira YoungHannah GeorgeMacmillan
Peter in PerilHelen BateOtter-Barry Books
Me and Mister PMaria FarrerDaniel RieleyOUP
A Story Like the WindGill LewisJo WeaverOUP
There May Be a CastlePiers TordayQuercus
The Goldfish BoyLisa ThompsonScholastic
The Tale of Angelino BrownDavid AlmondAlex T SmithWalker Books
Football School: Where Football Explains the WorldAlex, Bellos and Ben LyttletonSpike GerrellWalker Books
The Street Beneath My FeetCharlotte GuillianYuval ZommerWords & Pictures

Longlist 12-16

Optimists Die FirstSusin NielsenAndersen Press
EncountersJason WallaceAndersen Press
Goodbye DaysJeff ZentnerAndersen Press
Mind The GapPhil EarleBarrington Stoke
Passing for WhiteTanya LandmanBarrington Stoke
We Come ApartSarah Crossan and Brian ConaghanBloomsbury
Lydia- the Wild Girl of Pride & PrejudiceNatasha FarrantChicken House
The Island at the End of EverythingKiran Millwood HargraveChicken House
The HypnotistLaurence AnholtCorgi
Wolf HollowLauren WolkCorgi
Kid Got ShotSimon MasonDavid Fickling Books
OrangeboyPatrice LawrenceHodder
Out of HeartIrfan MasterHot Key Books
The Bone SparrowZana FraillonOrion
Saint DeathMarcus SedgwickOrion
Black Light ExpressPhilip ReeveOUP
Frogkisser!Garth NixPiccadilly Press
Alpha: Abidjan to Gare du NordBessoraBarrouxSarah ArdizzoneThe Bucket List
Where the World EndsGeraldine McCaughreanUsborne
The Hate You GiveAngie ThomasWalker Books

Shortlist announcement w/b March 26th 2018

The winners will be announced on July 6th at the UKLA International Conference, Mercure Holland House Hotel, Cardiff

Enquires fao Lynda Graham awards@ukla.org

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