Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Dorothy Canfield Fisher

The Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award annually recognizes one new American children's book selected by the vote of Vermont schoolchildren. It was inaugurated in 1957.[1][2]

The award is co-sponsored by the Vermont State PTA and the Vermont Department of Libraries and named after the Vermont writer Dorothy Canfield Fisher. Each spring a committee of eight adults selects a "Master List" of 30 books first published during the previous calendar year. Next spring, those children who have read at least five of the 30 books are eligible to vote for the award (2014 deadline April 18). The winning writer is invited to visit Vermont to speak with children about the experience of writing for children.[1][2]

Voting for the 2014 award closed April 18[1] and the winner was announced May 2.[3] The 2014–2015 Master List of books to be read and discussed during that school year—2013 publications to constitute the ballot for the 2015 award—was also announced at the annual Dorothy Canfield Fisher Conference on May 2, 2014.[4] The award ceremony will be Thursday evening, June 27.[1]

Awards in other categories[edit]

Vermont sponsors two other statewide book awards determined by the votes of younger and older students.

The Red Clover Book Award recognizes a picture book published two years earlier. Voters are children in grades K–4 who have read, or heard read aloud, all 10 books on the list. The Red Clover BA was established by 1997–98, if not earlier, and its 2014 winner was announced by May. It is the centerpiece of a one-day conference in October.[5][6]

The Green Mountain Book Award is voted by high school students (grades 9–12, routinely ages 14–18) either through a school library or individually online, deadline May 31. Students are asked to vote only once and to read at least 3 from a list of 15 books (for 2014, published 2008–2012; for 2015, published 2011–2013). The Green Mountain BA was inaugurated in 2006.[7][8]


One book by a single writer has won the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award every year from 1957.[9]

Multiple awards[edit]

At least four writers have won more than one DCF Award: Beverly Cleary in 1958, 1966, and 1985; Mary Downing Hahn in 1988, 1996, and 2006; Jerry Spinelli and Kate DiCamillo and twice each.

Seven times from 1985 to 2005 (double-dagger), and no others, the schoolchildren selected the winner of the annual Newbery Medal (dated one year earlier, established 1922). That award by the Association for Library Service to Children recognizes the year's "most distinguished contribution to American literature for children". The first agreement of Vermont children with U.S. children's librarians was their 1985 selection of Dear Mr. Henshaw by Cleary and there were six more such agreements during the next twenty years to 2005.[11]


In 2018 there was a call from the Vermont Library Board to change the name of the award to no longer honor Dorothy Canfield Fisher, following a report that she had ties to Vermont's eugenics movement.[12][13] As of April 2018, the name remained the same.


  1. ^ a b c d "DCF Children's Book Award" (homepage). Google Docs. Retrieved 2014-04-20.
  2. ^ a b Bang-Jensen, Valerie (2010). "A Children's Choice Program: Insights into Book Selection, Social Relationships, and Reader Identity". Language Arts. 87 (3): 169–76. 
  3. ^ a b "DCF Children's Book Award". Google Docs. Homepage for official site hosted by Google. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  4. ^ "DCF Children's Book Award" Archived April 20, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. (homepage). Vermont Department of Libraries. Retrieved 2014-04-20.
      Homepage for official site hosted by Vermont. With much contemporary material for 2012–2013 to 2014–2015, the preceding, current, and upcoming school years.
  5. ^ "Red Clover Book Award" Archived May 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. (homepage). Vermont Department of Libraries. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  6. ^ "Red Clover Award Program" Archived May 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. (homepage). Mother Goose Programs ( Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  7. ^ "Green Mountain Book Award" Archived May 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. (homepage). Vermont Department of Libraries. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  8. ^ "Green Mountain Book Award" Archived May 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. (homepage). Google Docs. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  9. ^ "Past Winners" Archived May 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.. Google Docs. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
  10. ^ "Winners of the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award" (PDF). 
  11. ^ "Welcome to the Newbery Medal Home Page!". Association for Library Service to Children. American Library Association. Retrieved 2014-04-20.
  12. ^ Walsh, Molly (2017-06-21). "Vermont Considers Dumping Dorothy Canfield Fisher Over Ties to Eugenics Movement". Seven Days. Retrieved 2018-04-13. 
  13. ^ Walsh, Molly (2018-01-11). "Library Board Pushes to Rename Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award". Seven Days. Retrieved 2018-04-13. 

External links[edit]