Ms. Erin Perkinson Learning Lab, Gr. 5-8


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Welcome back!  It’s going to be a GREAT year!

Looking for some GREAT books to read? UPDATED for 2017-2018


The Monarch Award: Illinois’ K-3 Readers’ Choice Award

In the summer of 2002, several past presidents of ISLMA discussed the need for a K-3 children’s book award. The ISLMA Board established a work group to investigate creation of such an award. In April 2003, ISLMA approved the establishment and support of The Monarch Award: Illinois’ K-3 Readers’ Choice Award.

The name Monarch was chosen because of its familiarity to K-3 children and to symbolize the growth, change and freedom that becoming a reader brings. The Monarch is designed to encourage children to read critically and become familiar with children’s books, authors and illustrators. The program is open to all K-3 age children in Illinois.

The 2018 Monarch Nominee List can be found at:


The Bluestem Award: Illinois’ Grades 3-5 Readers’ Choice Award

In the spring of 2008, the ISLMA board approved establishing a committee to explore the possibility of a new book award that would fit between the Monarch and Rebecca Caudill Awards. Interested library media specialists met in June, and an outline of the proposed new award was presented to the board in August. In September, a survey about the new award was conducted, and 92% of respondents favored the creation of a new award. The ISLMA board approved the new award at their October meeting.

The award is designed for students in grades 3-5 who are ready for longer titles than found on the Monarch list, but not quite ready for the sophistication of some of the Rebecca Caudill titles. Named in honor of Big Bluestem which is the state prairie grass, the award may include both timeless classics and current titles, as well as books that have appeared on Monarch and Rebecca Caudill lists.

The 2018 Bluestem Nominee Master List can be found at:


The Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award (Grades 4-8)

The Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award is an annual award given to the author of the book voted most outstanding by students in grades four through eight in participating Illinois schools.

The award is named in honor of Rebecca Caudill who lived and wrote in Urbana, Illinois, for nearly 50 years. The award is given in recognition for her literary talent and the universal appeal of her books which have touched the hearts of many children and young adults!



My name is Erin Perkinson and I am one of the Learning Lab teachers for the 2017-2018 school year.  I would like to take this opportunity to tell you a little bit about myself.  I earned my Bachelor of Arts at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in Elementary Education.  I also have a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from West Virginia University with a school counseling specialization.  In addition to my two degrees I have a School Counselor endorsement, Learning Behavior Specialist 1 endorsement and my English as a Second Language endorsement.  This summer I took the Illinois State Board of Education Gifted Education Seminar. I am a lifelong learner and look forward to nurturing that passion for learning in your student!  My goal is to help each student grow academically, socially and emotionally.

I believe that open communication with parents is a key component to a student’s success.  The best way to contact me throughout the school day is via email.  My email address is:

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