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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU helps Las Cruces and San Miguel school children select best children?s books

If parents are looking for books for a summer reading list, the 2014 Children?s Choice book award list has 90 titles that span reading levels from beginning to sixth grade. Las Cruces school children from nine schools helped to select the winning books for the Children?s Choices program, which is sponsored by the International Reading Association and the Children?s Book Council.

?This year 2,500 students in southern New Mexico participated in the Children?s Choice program,? said Anita Hernandez, Kidd Chair in Literacy and New Mexico State University associate professor in the curriculum and instruction department. ?They read new 2013 books and voted on whether they liked the book or not. The best part is that each of the schools keeps the books. This year more than 4,000 books were added to the libraries of these nine schools.?

The nine participating schools included Cesar Chavez Elementary, Dona Ana Elementary, Hermosa Heights Elementary, Hillrise Elementary, Lynn Middle School, MacArthur Elementary, Sunrise Elementary, University Hills Elementary and North Valley Elementary, an NMSU lab school in San Miguel, N.M. This project is one of the several Don and Sarrah Kidd Literacy Endowment activities.

?The Children?s Choice award provided thousands of books for children in our elementary schools this past year,? said Michael Morehead, dean of the College of Education. ?Many young students had access to books that would not have been available if it were not for the innovative work of Dr. Anita Hernandez.

?Children also had a chance to rate the books, which gave them a unique opportunity to use their critical thinking skills in making a selection. We are proud of Dr. Hernandez?s and the College of Education?s work with our local schools and the terrific partnerships we have with K-12 educators in the region,? he said.

During the 2013-2014 academic school year, 12,500 children across the country read 700 titles. The winning books were announced and featured at the International Reading Association Conference in New Orleans in May.

The reading program partnership will continue next year.

For a complete listing of the winning books, visit http://www.reading.org/resources/booklists/childrenschoices.aspx or http://www.cbcbooks.org/childrens-choices/.