Backlist Book List: #STEM + #DiverseBooks For Young Creators

In 2019, Frankie Sparks and the Class Pet by Megan Frazer Blakemore won the Cybils Award in the Early Chapter Book. In selecting Frankie Sparks as a finalist, the panelists said:  

… This promising first book in a series will have children learning about animals, design thinking, and emotional intelligence while turning the pages to meet the new pet. Nadja Sarell’s scientific-style illustrations showing a diverse cast of children are visually appealing and just plentiful enough to make the leap to more complex chapter books accessible to readers. 

So with an eye toward diverse casts, page-turners, the scientific process, and, of course, a class pet, we dug into the archives to find books similar to the Frankie Sparks Third Grade Inventor series.
Some of the books on our list are series, some are not; and, no surprise they encompass seven Cybils Awards Categories: Early Chapter Book, Elementary/Middle Grade Graphic Novels, Fiction Picture Books, Middle Grade Fiction, Middle Grade Nonfiction, and Poetry.

Many of the title characters are girls, but boys will love these stories, too!

Caterflies and Ice by Asia CitroCaterflies and Ice
Zoey and Sassafras, Book 4
by Asia Citro, illustrated by Marion Lindsay
2018 Finalist
Early Chapter Book
Emmy in the Key of Code by Aimee LucidoEmmy in the Key of Code
by Aimee Lucido
2019 Nominee
fort building time megan wagner lloydFort-Building Time
by Megan Wagner Lloyd, illustrated by Abigail Halpin
2017 Nominee
Fiction Picture Book
Frankie Sparks third grade inventor megan frazer blakemoreFrankie Sparks and the Class Pet
Frankie Sparks, Third-Grade Inventor, Book 1
by Megan Frazer Blakemore, illustrated by Nadja Sarell
2020 Winner
Early Chapter Book
zapato power 10 by jacqueline julesFreddie Ramos Hears It All
Zapato Power, Book 10
by Jacqueline Jules, illustrated by Miguel Benítez
2018 Nominee
Early Chapter Book
From an idea to Lego Lowey Bundy Sichol From an Idea to Lego: The Building Bricks Behind the World’s Largest Toy Company
by Lowey Bundy Sichol, illustrated by C.S. Jennings
2019 Nominee
Middle Grade Nonfiction
Great Art Caper Pets on the Loose Victoria JamiesonThe Great Art Caper
(Pets on the Loose!)
written and illustrated by Victoria Jamieson
2017 Nominee
Elementary/Middle Grade Graphic Novel
guinea pig private eye colleen venable Hamster and Cheese
Guinea Pig, Pet Shop Private Eye, Book 1
Colleen A.F. Venable, illustrated by Stephanie Yue
2010 Finalist
Elementary/Middle Grade Graphic Novel
Ivy and Bean Take the Case by Annie BarrowsIvy and Bean Take the Case
Ivy and Bean, Book 10
by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall
2013 eligible
Layla and the Bots Built for Speed Vicky FantHappy Paws and Built for Speed
Layla and the Bots, Books 1 and 2
by Vicky Fang, illustrated by Christine Nishiyama
2020 Nominee
Early Chapter Book
Mindy Kim and the Yummy Seaweed BusinessMindy Kim and the Yummy Seaweed Business
Mindy Kim, Book 1 of 6
by Lyla Lee, illustrated by Dung Ho
2020 Finalist
Early Chapter Book
Sofia Valdez and the Vanishing VoteSofia Valdez and the Vanishing Vote
The Questioneers, Book 4
by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts
2020 Finalist
Early Chapter Book
Ways to make sunshine by renee watsonWays to Make Sunshine
A Ryan Hart Novel, Book 1
by Renée Watson, illustrated by Nina Mata
2020 nominee
Middle Grade Fiction

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