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And the winner of the 2019 Calling Caldecott mock vote is…

…Yuyi Morales’s Dreamers

Congratulations to Yuyi Morales for winning the mock vote here at Calling Caldecott!

It’s been a bit of a wild ride, though. If you look at the full results of our vote, you’ll see that this was almost too close to call:

1st choice
(4 points)
2nd choice
(3 points)
3rd choice
(2 points)
Total points
A Big Mooncake for Little Star
50 40 69 458
Blue 23 40 46 304
Drawn Together
45 59 39 435
Dreamers 66 56 43 518
Hello Lighthouse
31 56 56 404
Julián Is a Mermaid
58 59 41 491
We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga
54 17 33 333


And here’s a visual based on the points:

If this were the actual Caldecott committee, they would need to keep voting until one book got a majority of first-place votes. Each new ballot would drop the lower-ranked books until at least 8 of the 15 voters on the committee chose the same book for first place. We had 327 voters, and Dreamers got 50 first-place votes, so we would be far from finished at this point. But since we don’t have time for more ballots — ALA Midwinter has begun, and the real committee begins deliberating in just hours — we’re declaring Dreamers our winner and will move on to figuring out our honor books.

As for the honors, after the real committee determined its winner, the members would probably decide to take a new vote with the four books with the next highest totals on the ballot. (See this PDF of the Caldecott manual for a detailed explanation of the process.) For us, those books are Julián Is a Mermaid, A Big Mooncake for Little Star, Drawn Together, and Hello Lighthouse. For our mock purposes, we will stop there and name these our honor books. Each of these four books received more than 400 points and, with some clear separation between that and the lowest two books, we are going to declare that our cut-off point.

Congratulations to all the winners of this mock Caldecott vote! What a remarkable group of books! We will be back tomorrow with some more analysis and a wrap-up of the Calling Caldectt season.

Tell us in the comments what you think. Elated? Moderately happy? Disappointed?


About Julie Danielson, Martha Parravano, and Lolly Robinson

Julie Danielson, Martha Parravano, and Lolly Robinson are authors of the Calling Caldecott blog.



  1. For the last four or five years (or many even further back? Not sure) the winner of the Horn Book Calling Caldecott has NOT gone on to win the Caldecott Medal:

    Calling Caldecott “After the Fall” – Caldecott Medal “Wolf in the Snow”
    Calling Caldecott “They All Saw A Cat” Caldecott Medal “Radiant Child”
    Calling Caldecott “The Farmer and the Clown” Caldecott Medal “The Adventures of Beekle”
    Calling Caldecott “Last Stop on Market Street” Caldecott Medal “Finding Winnie”
    Calling Caldecott “Mr. Tiger Goes Wild” Caldecott Medal “Journey”

    In THREE (3) of the above five years the Calling Caldecott winner did not get ANY medal from the Real Committee (After the Fall; The Farmer and the Clown; Mr. Tiger Goes Wild”) at all. I do not profess to admire the CC results over these year more than the actual results but I would say just as much.

    This brings us to this year. I think almost everyone in the book community including those bold people (whom I greatly admire) who have made predictions on paper are saying without reservation that THIS year’s Calling Caldecott winner, DREAMERS by Yuyi Morales will be winning the GOLD MEDAL on Monday. People believe it is so timely and so so relevant not to mention it is a gorgeous book, that it is the odds-on favorite and by quite a distance at that. Hence it appears (nothing is certain of course) that this year will mark that very rare uniformity between CC and ALA. The FOUR (4) CC Honor books are all absolutely magnificent and among my own faves of this year and I’d like to think ALL in addition to the two others, BLUE and WE ARE GRATEFUL will be seriously in contention along with all the others on Ballot 1. I have a hunch (like I did when I picked the dark horse LEAVE ME ALONE) a few years ago that from what I read and hear that THANK YOU OMU will possible land an Honor. But as there are so many great books no prediction can be made with confidence.

    Great job to you three, quite a fun experience!

  2. Sorry, “Journey” did not win the Caldecott Medal. “Locomotive” did. “Journey” won an Honor that year. But the statistical comparison doesn’t change.

  3. I don’t mean to enter a third comment here but I wanted to note the amazing circumstance of four out of the five artist winners being women. Only Dan Santat prevents a clean sweep, and beyond that six out the final seven here are women. Amazing and fantastic!

  4. Bill Wright says:

    Didn’t see your usual post for people to put up their own mock results, so if this is not in the best place for this, sorry! After a nail-biter of a voting process…
    The Kensico School (Valhalla NY) Caldecott and Honors (chosen by my 3rd grade class) are:

    Hello Lighthouse (Sophie Blackall)

    Baby Monkey, Private Eye (Brian Selznick & David Serlin)
    Dreamers (Yuyi Morales)
    Ocean Meets Sky (Fan Brothers)

    Looking forward to hearing what others have picked, and (of course) the news on Monday!

  5. Lynn Van Auken says:

    I am so glad to see Baby Monkey on another Mock Caldecott list. We are not yet finished voting at our school, but Baby Monkey is definitely a contender.
    What I find especially interesting about this book is that I shelved it with our beginning readers in September – even had it on display for over a month – and NOT ONE K – 2 student borrowed it through the first four months of school.
    But I included it in our Mock Caldecott contenders list and my 3rd, 4th & 5th graders can’t get enough of it! I now have an extensive Baby Monkey wait list. And many OB School fans are hoping for a sequel.

  6. Rox Anne Close says:

    Here are the results of my second grade class Mock Caldecott Contest from Draper, Utah.
    1. I Am Cat
    2. A Moon Cake for Little Star
    3. Blue
    4 and 5 (tie) Drawn Together and New Shoes
    Lighthouse and Ocean Meets Sky also received several votes.
    I read 25 possible contenders to the class in the month of January, and the class evaluated the books according to Caldecott criteria.

  7. Thank you all for sharing your mock vote results! We should definitely make sure we do a post every year, asking people to share their results — but you can certainly share them in the comments of any post. I love to hear what students think.

  8. And in the end NO Dreamers will will surely shock the world in the same way they were stunned when the committee ignored THE FARMER AND THE CROWN.

    The Brian Lies book came out of left field, ALMA (a gorgeous lovely book is a delightful surprise) and OMU and MOONCAKE were expected by many to score. I too saw both getting an Honor and have said so.

    HELLO LIGHTHOUSE is a supreme masterpiece and who could dare begrudge Ms. Blackall who wins again and remains one fo our greatest artists and human beings!!!

  9. CLOWN, not CROWN.

  10. Maybe, Sam, we should refrain from using the word “ignored” in conjunction with the Caldecott Committee. We have no idea what books were on the table, which books came close, and which books the committee had to sadly say goodbye to.

    I think we can be certain that DREAMERS was on the table (how could it not be), and the Committee’s hard work shouldn’t be discounted in a year with so many incredible picture books. Surely the decisions they reached were not easy.

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