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Calling Caldecott first ballot announced

counttheballotsWe had planned to start our vote after the weekend, but then we realized that many of you will have this coming Monday off for the Martin Luther King holiday. Polls will still close this Tuesday at 9 a.m. as previously  announced, but the ballot itself will go live here at noon today.

You will be asked to vote for your first, second, and third choices, just like the real committee. Unlike the real committee, you will not be sequestered in a conference room. Just vote your heart and just vote one time, please. While we love social media and we encourage people to vote, let’s not have anyone rustling up votes from uninterested friends and neighbors.  Though that kind of vote-drumming-up might work on American Idol, we aren’t really about that. We just want to know what our readership really thinks about the books, so, except for encouraging your book-loving friends to read the books and vote (AND PLEASE DO ENCOURAGE YOUR BOOKISH FRIENDS TO VOTE), let’s not have any ballot stuffing. It skews the results and takes away from the fun.

In any case, tallying Caldecott votes is a tricky business. Here’s what the handbook says about Caldecott balloting, 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.

Obviously, we can’t tally our votes exactly like the real committee. For one thing, the ratios would be off since there will be a lot more than 15 people voting! But we wanted to give you an idea of how this would work if you WERE voting on the committee. In the interest of expediting our results, here, we will go to a second ballot and stop there.

So, without further ado…

Calling Caldecott 2014 First Ballot Titles:

Bluebird by Bob Staake
Boxers & Saints by Gene Luen Yang
Building Our House by Jonathan Bean
Bully by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
Daisy Gets Lost by Chris Raschka
The Dark by Lemony Snicket, illustrated by Jon Klassen
Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle
Frog Song by Brenda Z. Guiberson, illustrated by Gennady Spirin
Have You Seen My New Blue Socks? by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Sergio Ruzzier
Inside Outside by Lizi Boyd
Journey by Aaron Becker
Locomotive by Brian Floca
The Matchbox Diary by Paul Fleishman, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
The Mighty LaLouche by Matthew Olshan, illustrated by Sophie Blackall
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild by Peter Brown
Mr. Wuffles! by David Wiesner
Niño Wrestles the World by Yuyi Morales
Odd Duck by Cecil Castellucci, illustrated by Sara Varon
On a Beam of Light by Jennifer Berne, illustrated by Vladimir Radunsky
Parrots over Puerto Rico by Susan L. Roth and Cindy Trumbore, illustrated by Susan L. Roth
A Splash of Red by Jen Bryant, illustrated by Melissa Sweet
The Tortoise & the Hare by Jerry Pinkney
The Tree Lady by H. Joseph Hopkins, illustrated by Jill McElmurry
Water in the Park by Emily Jenkins, illustrated by Stephanie Graegin


Again, the actual ballot will go up at noon today. Watch for it! And good luck to all.

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. Robin Smith says:

    Counting the minutes until the polls open!

  2. Martha V. Parravano Martha V. Parravano says:

    Me too!

  3. Chugga-chugga chugga-chugga choooo choooooo! Guess what my #1 will be? 😉

  4. There are three excellent train books Sam, but I think yours may be from Mr. Floca. Ha!

  5. I don’t know if anyone else is having this problem, but when I link to the Calling Caldecott blog either from the Blogs drop down menu here on the Horn Book site, or from a google search, I am not brought to this entry or the one with the link to the ballot. I am still taken to an entry from the 16th: Mr. Tiger Goes Wild and Locomotive: Compare and Contrast
    If I am not the only person having this problem, then the vote may be seriously affected.

  6. Robin Smith says:

    Thank you for this, Allison. I have not had this problem from my computer, but it is happening from my phone and ipad. I would never have realized it unless you had pointed it out. I think this is the link:

    The voting is pretty brisk, so I think we are okay. But, I will pass this information on to someone who might be able to help. (I am NOT the tech guru…)

    Again. thanks.

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