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VOTE NOW! Mock Caldecott polls are open.

Here’s a link to the official Calling Caldecott Ballot #1. Note that you will vote for your first, second, and third choices, just like the real committee. The polls will close at 9 a.m. tomorrow morning (Tuesday, January 17) and we will try to get the results up at noon.

Tallying Caldecott votes is a tricky business, but Robin has volunteered to do the honors. Here’s what the handbook says about counting votes and determining the winner:


When there is consensus that all the books on the discussion list are fully discussed, the committee proceeds to a selection ballot. Certain procedures apply:

  • Committee members list first, second, and third place votes for the award on a selection ballot.
  • In tabulating ballot results, the tellers assign four points to each first place vote, three points to each second place vote, and two points to each third place vote.
  • There is a formula to determine the winner. A book must receive at least 8 first choices at four points per vote for a total of at least 32 points, and it must have an 8 point lead over the book receiving the next highest number of points.


Once balloting is complete, the tellers tabulate the results. The tabulations are double-checked, and the Chair reads the results aloud to the committee. Depending on the results, certain steps are taken:

  • If there is a winner, the committee proceeds to considering whether or not to select honor books.
  • If the first ballot does not produce a winner, the committee follows procedures for re-balloting.

For our tally, we will need to adjust for a larger committee size. Eight first choices on a committee of fifteen means the winning book needs to get a first place vote from more than half the members, so I guess we will aim for the same ratio. You can see why we may go to a second ballot. I guess Robin will also figure out what the equivalent of “at least 32 votes” is, based on how many of you we hear from. The web polling tool has been set up to assign the right number values to each vote, but that still leaves Robin with a fair amount of math to do. Better her than me!

The real committee keeps discussing and voting until there is a clear winner. Unlike them, each of our votes will take about a day and a half, so we will stop at two ballots no matter what. In any case, Robin will do the math and one of us will post the results tomorrow around noon.


Lolly Robinson About Lolly Robinson

Lolly Robinson is the creative director for The Horn Book, Inc. She has degrees in studio art and children's literature and teaches children's literature at Harvard University's Graduate School of Education. She has served on the Caldecott and Boston Globe-Horn Book Award committees and blogs for Calling Caldecott and Lolly's Classroom on this site.



  1. So exciting! Thanks for giving us a chance to vote!

  2. This voting thing is so hard. Not only do I have to leave twelve books out, I am forced to think of all the books that are not even on the list. And then I have to imagine all the books I have not even seen this year. At lease when you are on the real committee, you know you have seen absolutely everything.
    But, voting is always a thrill, isn’t it?

  3. thank you. I found this much trickier than a straightforward wish for first, honor and honor which would be how I would like it to run. Can we vote more than once?

  4. Lolly Robinson Lolly Robinson says:

    I’m afraid it’s only set up to allow one vote per computer. Of course, you could always find another computer and vote from there — assuming no one else was planning to vote from it.

    On the actual committee, honor books aren’t chosen until the winning book is determined. After that, the committee decides how many honor books and whether to take another vote to choose them.

  5. Allison,
    It is tricky, isn’t it?
    First, honor, honor would predict that there would be just two honor books. I always have all my fingers and toes crossed for many, many honor books.
    Since we are trying to approximate the voting that will take place in each committee at ALA next weekend, (with weighted voting for first, second and third, needing more than half of the voters to agree on the first place book) it has to be tricky this way.
    I just had a hard time choosing my three choices

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  1. […] early (and often?) January 16, 2012 By Roger Sutton 4 Comments The first ballot for Lolly and Robin’s Calling Caldecott mock award is now available for your …. I don’t know if ballot stuffing is possible but it’s WRONG […]

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