The John Newbery Medal Since 1922, The Newbery Medal has been awarded annually by the American Library Association for the most distinguished American children's book published the previous year. The award made history by being the first children's book award in the world. The purpose of the Newbery Medal is "To encourage original creative work in the field of books for children. To emphasize to the public that contributions to the literature for children deserve similar recognition to poetry, plays, or novels. To give those librarians, who make it their life work to serve children's reading interests, an opportunity to encourage good writing in this field." ALA Newbery
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