Tournament of Kids Books

I live in (my opinion) THE BEST college basketball town.

University of Kansas Basketball was founded by the inventor of basketball, James Naismith, back in 1898, so you could say Lawrence, Kansas, the home of the University of Kansas, and the place I proudly live, has a strong history of college ball. The roots run deep.

It’s the reason that this time of the year, during the March Madness season, Lawrence is full of energy. It hangs in the air like an oncoming storm. We’re a town that loves basketball and we love our Kansas Jayhawks. So, to get the kids of Lawrence excited about the upcoming tourney AND excited about reading, the time has come to present…

Lawrence Public Library’s First-Ever Tournament of Kids Books!

Here’s the game plan….

Each week in March, the children of Lawrence are encouraged to vote for their favorite books bracket-style, from Sweet Sixteen all the way to the Championship round.

Tournament of Kids Books brackets are now available in our library or on the library’s website for casting predictions or to follow the progress of the tournament. Voting for the first round starts March 1!!!  At the end of each round, one lucky ballot will be selected to win a prize provided by The Friends of the Lawrence Public Library. All ballots will be tallied and the winning titles advance to the next round.

First Round Ballots Due Saturday, March 10
Second Round Ballots Due Saturday, March 17
Third Round Ballots Due Saturday, March 24th
Championship Round Ballots Due Saturday, March 31

The champion of the sixteen books will have a shield installed inside the jacket cover naming it: “Winner of the Tournament of Kids Books 2012, Voted by The Kids of Lawrence”. There will also be a winners ceremony in the beginning of April.

The titles chosen to compete were the top 16 most circulated (most checked out) children’s fiction and young fiction books in 2011. Meet the 2012 opening round contenders:

The Heroes of Olympus #1: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan


Eleven by Lauren Myracle


My Weird School Daze #11: Mr. Tony is Full of Baloney by Dan Gutman


Junie B., First Grader: Dumb Bunny by Barbara Park


Ranger’s Apprentice: The Icebound Land by John Flanagan


Big Nate Strikes Again by Lincoln Peirce


Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling


Warriors, Omen of the Stars #2: Fading Echoes by Erin Hunter


Magic Tree House #31: Summer of the Sea Serpent by Mary Pope Osborne


Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane by Suzanne Collins


Geronimo Stilton #26: Mummy with No Name by Geronimo Stilton


Ivy & Bean by Annie Barrows


Dork Diaries #2: Tales of a Not So Popular Party Girl by Rachel R. Russell


Happy Birthday Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel


Dragonbreath: Attack of the Ninja Frogs by Ursula Vernon


Diary of a Wimpy Kids #5: The Ugly Truth by Jeff Kinney

Paired up, ready for battle…..

Who do you think is the front runner?

Who’s the sleeper?

Who will win it all?

Download your Tournament of Kids Books 2012 bracket here or from the
Lawrence Public Library website.

It all starts March 1….

image sources: ku basketball, lost hero, eleven, mr tony is full of baloney, dumb bunny, icebound landbig nate strikes again, harry potter, fading echoes, summer of the serpent, gregor, mummy with no name, ivy and beandork diaries, happy birthday bad kitty, dragonbreath, ugly truth


9 Responses to “Tournament of Kids Books”

  1. Anne says:

    Love this – thanks for sharing!

  2. TeacherMcP says:

    I would LOVE to do this book tournament in my K-4 elementary school! Do you have any tips or suggestions I may need to transfer this from a public library event to a school? Is there a blank bracket with open spaces for the books available?

    • Rebecca says:

      I’ve seen many school librarians do this in their schools using this same format! My only suggestion is to tweak the concept to fit the interests of your students. Unfortunately, I don’t have a blank book bracket on file. The one in this post I created in Microsoft Publisher. If you google “16 bracket template”, you’ll find a variety of blank brackets to choose from! Good luck!


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