As a homeschooling mom, I threw out a reading challenge this week – to celebrate the 100th year of the Newbery Book Award:
Let’s read 50 Newbery Award Winners this year!
This is mostly because I want a reason to read children’s books – new ones and old favorites. (See below for a printable reading record.)
While I was working up a lather of enthusiasm about the books I am already reading and how everyone should too and how fun it will all be, Johnny interrupted by asking: “How does a book get to be a Newbery Award Winner?”
There are guidelines for Newbery Award winners, but his question led into another question for all of us:
“What – in your opinion – makes a good book?”
(Jumpstarting my rusty math brain to help students with their algebra is generally not a fun part of a good homeschool day but discussing books we’ve read and what makes a good book is the fun stuff.)
Here is a list we made about what makes a good book. We realized that there is no wrong answer and different people may have different opinions. Please share your own ideas in the comments!
A good book:
- Transports me to a place or situation. I feel like I am there.
- Creates believable characters who I can understand in some way.
- Even if it’s a fantasy book, there is something that I can relate to.
- Teaches timeless truths about people and life.
- Contains some type of realness – like historical facts or events. (That one was from my historical-fiction-loving child.)