The American Library Association has awarded the Randolph Caldecott Medal annually since 1938! Here are the books that have won over the past 85 years, available through your local library:


Hot Dog by Doug Salati

A summary picture book about mindfulness, featuring an overheated–and overwhelmed– canine in need of sea, sand, and fresh air


Watercress by Andrea Wang, illustrated by Jason Chin

Embarrassed about gathering watercress from a roadside ditch, a girl learns to appreciate her Chinese heritage after learning why the plant is so important to her parents.


We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom, illustrated by Michaela Goade

Water is the first medicine. It affects and connects us all… When a black snake threatens to destroy the Earth and poison her people’s water, one young water protector takes a stand to defend Earth’s most sacred resource. Inspired by the many indigenous-led movements across North America, this bold and lyrical picture book issues an urgent rallying cry to safeguard the Earth’s water from harm and corruption.


The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander, illustrated by Kadir Nelson

The Newbery Award-winning author of The Crossover pens an ode to black American triumph and tribulation, with art from a two-time Caldecott Honoree.


Hello Lighthouse by Sophie Blackall

Explores the life of one lighthouse as it beams its message out to sea through shifting seasons, changeable weather, and the tenure of its final keeper.


Wolf in the Snow by Matthew Cordell

When a wolf cub and little girl are lost in a snowstorm they must find their way home.


Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat by Javaka Steptoe

Jean-Michael Basquiat and his unique, collage-style paintings rocked to fame in the 1980s as a cultural phenomenon unlike anything the art work had ever seen. But before that, he was a little boy who saw art everywhere: in poetry books and museums, in games and in the words that we speak, and in the pulsing energy of New York City. Now, award-winning illustrator Javaka Steptoe’s vivid text and bold artwork echoing Basquiat’s own introduce young readers to the powerful message and art doesn’t always have to be neat or clean–and definitely not inside the lines–to be beautiful.


Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear by Lindsay Mattick, illustrated by Sophie Blackall

A woman tells her young son the true story of how his great-great-grandfather, Captain Harry Colebourn, rescued and learned to love a bear cub in 1914 as he was on his way to take care of soldiers’ horses during World War I, and the bear became the inspiration for A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh.


The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat

An imaginary friend waits a long time to be imagined by a child and given a special name, and finally does the unimaginable–he sets out on a quest to find his perfect match in the real world.


 Locomotive by Brian Floca


This is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen

A tiny minnow wearing a pale blue bowler hat has a thing or two up his fins in this underwater light-on-dark chase scene.


A Ball for Daisy by Chris Raschka

A wordless picture book about all the fun a dog can have with her ball.


A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip C. Stead, illustrated by Erin E. Stead

Amos McGee, a friendly zookeeper, always made time to visit his good friends: the elephant, the tortoise, the penguin, the rhinoceros, and the owl. But one day–‘Ah-choo!’–he woke with the sniffles and the sneezes. Though he didn’t make it into the zoo that day, he did receive some unexpected guests.


The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney

In this wordless retelling of an Aesop fable, an adventuresome mouse proves that even small creatures are capable of great deeds when he rescues the King of the Jungle.


The House in the Night by Susan Marie Swanson, pictures by Beth Krommes

Illustrations and easy-to-read text explore the light that makes a house in the night a home filled with light.


The Invention of Hugo Cabret: A Novel in Words and Pictures by Brian Selznick

When twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931, meets a mysterious toyseller and his goddaughter, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.


 Flotsam by David Wiesner

The story of what happens when a camera becomes a piece of flotsam.


The Hello, Goodbye Window by Norton Juster, pictures by Chris Raschka

Looking through the kitchen window, a little girl and her doting grandparents watch stars, play games, and, most importantly, say hello and goodbye.


 Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes

When Kitten mistakes the full moon for a bowl of milk, she ends up tired, wet, and hungry trying to reach it.


The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein

A lyrical evocation of Philippe Petit’s 1974 tightrope walk between the World Trade Center towers.


My Friend Rabbit by Eric Rohmann

Something always seems to go wrong when Rabbit is around, but Mouse lets him play with his toy plane anyway because he is his good friend.


The Three Pigs by David Wiesne

The three pigs escape the wolf by going into another world where they meet the cat and the fiddle, the cow that jumped over the moon, and a dragon.


So You Want to be President by Judith St. George, illustrated by David Small

Presents an assortment of facts about the qualifications and characteristics of U.S. presidents, from George Washington to Bill Clinton.


Joseph Had a Little Overcoat by Simms Taback

A very old overcoat is recycled numerous times into a variety of garments.


Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin, illustrated by Mary Azarian

A biography of a self-taught scientist who photographed thousands of individual snowflakes in order to study their unique formations. Snow in Vermont is as common as dirt. Why would anyone want to photograph it? From the time he was a small boy, Wilson Bentley thinks of ice crystals as small miracles, and he determines that one day his camera will capture for others their extraordinary beauty. Often misunderstood in his time, he took pictures that even today reveal two important truths about snowflakes: first, that no two are alike, and second, that each one is startlingly beautiful. His story gives children insight into a soul who had not only a scientist’s vision and perseverance, but a clear passion for the wonders of nature.-


Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky

A retelling of the German folktale in which a beautiful girl with long golden hair is kept imprisoned in a lonely tower by a sorceress. Includes a note on the origins of the story.


Golem by David Wisniewski

A saintly rabbi miraculously brings to life a clay giant who helps him watch over the Jews of sixteenth-century Prague.


Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann

The children at Napville Elementary School always ignore Officer Buckle’s safety tips, until a police dog named Gloria accompanies him when he gives his safety speeches.


Smoky Night by Eve Bunting, illustrated by David Diaz

Daniel and his mother look out of their window at the smoky night below. There are looters on the street, fires in the distance. Daniel clutches his cat, Jasmine. But later, when they’re forced to leave the apartment building, Jasmine can’t be found. Mrs. Kim’s cat is missing too. Where are they? They can’t be with each other. Those cats don’t get along … This story is about cats and people who couldn’t get along until a night of rioting brings them together.


Grandfather’s Journey by Allen Say

A Japanese American man recounts his grandfather’s journey to America which he later also undertakes, and the feelings of being torn by a love for two different countries.


Mirette on the High Wire by Emily Arnold McCully

Mirette learns tightrope walking from Monsieur Bellini, a guest in her mother’s boarding house, not knowing that he is a celebrated tightrope artist who has withdrawn from performing because of fear.


Tuesday by David Wiesner

Frogs rise on their lily pads, float through the air, and explore the nearby houses while their inhabitants sleep.


Black and White by David Macaulay

Four brief “stories” about parents, trains, and cows, or is it really all one story? The author recommends careful inspection of words and pictures to both minimize and enhance confusion.


Lon Po Po: a Red-Riding Hood Story from China translated and illustrated by Ed Young

Three sisters staying home alone are endangered by a hungry wolf who is disguised as their grandmother.


Song and Dance Man by Karen Ackerman, illustrated by Stephen Gammel

Grandpa demonstrates for his visiting grandchildren some of the songs, dances, and jokes he performed when he was a vaudeville entertainer.


Owl Moon by Jane Yolen, illustrated by John Schoenherr

On a winter’s night under a full moon, a father and daughter trek into the woods to see the Great Horned Owl.


Hey, Al by Arthur Yorinks, pictures by Richard Egielski

A city janitor and his treasured canine companion are transported by a large colorful bird to an island in the sky, where their comfortable paradise existence threatens to turn them into birds as well.


The Polar Express by Chris van Allsburg

A magical train ride on Christmas Eve takes a boy to the North Pole to receive a special gift from Santa Claus.


Saint George and the Dragon: A Golden Legend by Margaret Hodges, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman

Retells the segment from Spenser’s The Faerie Queene, in which George, the Red Cross Knight, slays the dreadful dragon that has been terrorizing the countryside for years and brings peace and joy to the land.


The Glorious Flight: Across the Channel with Louis Bleriot, July 25, 1909 by Alice and Martin Provensen

A biography of the man whose fascination with flying machines produced the Bleriot XI, which crossed the English Channel in thirty-seven minutes in the early 1900’s.


Shadow by Blaise Cendrars, translated and illustrated by Marcia Brown

Free verse evocation of the eerie, shifting image of Shadow which represents the beliefs and ghosts of the past and is brought to life wherever there is light, fire, and a storyteller.


 Jumanji by Chris Van Allsburg

Left on their own for an afternoon, two bored and restless children find more excitement than they bargained for in a mysterious and mystical jungle adventure board game.


 Fables by Arnold Lobel

Twenty original fables about an array of animal characters from crocodile to ostrich.


Ox-Cart Man by Donald Hall, pictures by Barbara Cooney

Describes the day-to-day life throughout the changing seasons of an early 19th-century New England family.


The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul Goble

Though she is fond of her people, a girl prefers to live among the wild horses where she is truly happy and free.


Noah’s Ark by Peter Spier

Retells in pictures how a pair of every manner of creature climbed on board Noah’s ark and thereby survived the Flood.


Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions by Margaret Musgrove, pictures by Leo and Diane Dillon

Explains some traditions and customs of 26 African tribes beginning with letters from A to Z.


Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears: A West African Tale by Verna Aardema, pictures by Leo and Diane Dillon

A retelling of a traditional West African tale that reveals how the mosquito developed its annoying habit. A mosquito annoyed the iguana, who frightened the python, who scared the rabbit … and now the whole jungle is in an uproar because the sun won’t rise. The animals discuss the situation and decide to punish the mosquito. Even today, whenever we hear a mosquito buzz, we smack it hard!


Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears: A West African Tale by Gerald McDermott

An adaptation of the Pueblo Indian myth which explains how the spirit of the Lord of the Sun was brought to the world of men.


Duffy and the Devil by Harve Zemach, illustrated by Margot Zemach

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0374318875


The Funny Little Woman by Arlene Mosel, pictures by Blair Lent

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0525302654


One Fine Day by Nonny Hogrogian

After the old woman cuts off his tail when he steals her milk, the fox must go through a long series of transactions before she will sew it back on again.


A Story, a Story: An African Tale by Gail E. Haley

Recounts how most African folk tales came to be called “Spider Stories.”


Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig

In a moment of fright Sylvester the donkey asks his magic pebble to turn him into a rock but then can not hold the pebble to wish himself back to normal again.


The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship: A Russian Tale by Arthur Ransome, pictures by Uri Shulevitz

When the Czar proclaims that he will marry his daughter to the man who brings him a flying ship, the Fool of the World sets out to try his luck and meets some unusual companions on the way.


Drummer Hoff by Barbara Emberley, illustrated by Ed Emberely

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0525302654


Sam, Bangs, and Moonshine by Evaline Ness

Relates the experiences of a little girl as she learns to tell the difference between make believe and real life.


Always Room for One More by Sorche Nic Leodhas, illustrated by Nonny Hogrogian

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 9780805003314


May I Bring a Friend by Beatrice Sneck de Regniers, illustrated by Beni Montresor

A well-mannered little boy has permission to bring his animal friends to visit the king and queen.


 Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

A naughty little boy, sent to bed without his supper, sails to the land of the wild things where he becomes their king.


The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

The adventures of a little boy in the city on a very snowy day.


Once a Mouse…  by Marcia Brown

As it changes from mouse, to cat, to dog, to tiger, a hermit’s pet also becomes increasingly vain.


Baboushka and the Three Kings by Ruth Robbins, illustrated by Nicolas Sidjakov

An old woman who was too busy to travel with the Wise Men to find the Child now searches endlessly for Him each Christmas season.


Nine Days to Christmas: A Story of Mexico by Marie Hall Ets and Aurora Labastida 

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0140544429


Chanticleer and the Fox by Geoffrey Chaucer, adapted and illustrated by Barbara Cooney

A sly fox tries to outwit a proud rooster through the use of flattery.


Time of Wonder by Robert McCloskey

Follows the activities of two children spending their summer vacation on an island off the coast of Maine.


A Tree is Nice by Janice Udry, pictures by Marc Simont

Briefly describes the value of a tree.


Frog Went A-Courtin’ by John Langstaff, illustrated by Feodor Rojankovsky

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 9780156339001


Cinderella, or the Little Glass Slipper translated and illustrated by Marcia Brown

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0684126761


Madeline’s Rescue by Ludwig Bemelmans

A hound rescues a schoolgirl from the Seine, becomes a beloved school pet, is chased away by the trustees, and returns with a surprise.


The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward

Johnny goes hunting for a bearskin to hang on his family’s barn and returns with a small bundle of trouble.


Finders Keepers by Will and Nicolas

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 9780152275297


The Egg Tree by Katherine Milhous

Katy’s Easter morning discovery renews the tradition of the Easter egg tree.


Song of the Swallows by Leo Politi 

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 9780892369898


The Big Snow by Berta and Elmer Hader

Despite their elaborate preparations for the winter, the animals and birds are delighted by a surprise banquet after a big snow.


White Snow, Bright Snow by Alvin Tresselt, illustrated by Roger Duvoisin

When it begins to look, feel, and smell like snow, everyone prepares for a winter blizzard.


The Little Island by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Leonard Weisgard

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0385746407


The Rooster Crows: A Book of American Rhymes and Jingles by Maud and Miska Petersham

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0027731006


Prayer for a Child by Rachel Field, pictures by Elizabeth Orton Jones

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0374318875


Many Moons by James Thurber, illustrated by Louis Slobodkin

Though many try, only the court jester is able to fulfill Princess Lenore’s wish for the moon. Awarded the Caldecott Medal, 1944. A modern tale about a little princess who desired the moon and got it.


The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton

A country house is unhappy when the city, with all its buildings and traffic, grows up around her.


Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey

Mr. and Mrs. Mallard proudly return to their home in the Boston Public Garden with their eight offspring.


They Were Strong and Good by Robert Lawson

Relates the story of the author’s grandparents and parents, who, though not famous, helped build the United States.


Abraham Lincoln by Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire

Text and illustrations present the life of the boy born on the Kentucky frontier who became the sixteenth president of the United States.


Mei Li by Thomas Handforth

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0374318875


Animals of the Bible, A Picture Book by Helen Dean Fish, illustrated by Dorothy P. Lathrop

Available through Marina, search for the ISBN: 0374318875