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2002 Award
Morgan Plays Soccer
(by Anne Rockwell/illus. by Paul Meisel, HarperCollins $15 Score:) A terrific book for reluctant athletes! Morgan's not sure he can play, but is convinced and ultimately coached by his friend Nina in how to play soccer. We love the fact that the girl is the leader and the message is that it takes practice to become competent.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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The Big Auto Plant
(Little Mammoth Media, Little Mammoth Media $14.95 Score:) Clear, but not very compelling, footage of how a car (a Mercedes M-Class) is built. Of limited special interest. Also, The Big Boom! (***.5) Explore an active volcano, follow a demolition team as it implodes a 22-story building, and watch supersonic jets flying faster than the speed of sound. Some of the offered factoids about sound vibrations are a stretch for young viewers. 6 & up. Favorite in this series, The Big Space Shuttle (*****), with splendid footage of the shuttle, astronauts in training, and space camp. 5 & up. Platinum Award '99. (800) 543-8433.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
Big Book of Airplanes
(by Caroline Bingham, DK $14.95 Score:) From crop-dusters to Blackbird spy planes, this over-sized book has information and posterlike photos of some of the most unusual planes ever to fly.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
So You Want to Be President?
(by Judith St. George/illus. by David Small, Philomel $17.99 Score:)

Maybe you'd like not having to take out the garbage or having your own swimming pool, bowling alley or movie theater. But the president has a lot of homework, can't go anywhere alone and people do not always agree with him. Using funny stories and witty illustrations, this lively award-winning book introduces young readers to lesser known presidents with somewhat irreverent snap shots about their habits and families. This is a refreshingly long way from the kind of entries usually found in the encyclopedia.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2002. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2002 Award
Places in Time
(by Elspeth Leacock and Susan Buckley/illus. by Ran, Houghton Mifflin $15 Score:) This "atlas of American History" shows 20 different historic sites capturing the highlights of those moments in history. Visit the Pilgrims in New Plymouth, Saratoga during the Revolution, Philadelphia during the Constitutional Convention, and other significant places through the first half of the 20th century.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
Caillou the Explorer
(Warner Brothers, Warner Bros. $12.95 Score:) Welcome to the newest kid on the block! Caillou is older than Maisy, less noisy than Elmo, and paced just right for young viewers. Combining animation with live-action film, this video explores various forms of transportation (trains, boats, and planes) from a small boy's point of view. Unlike many, Caillou is about the "here and now" world of childhood, going places that kids will find entertaining and informative (3-5).

Age: Preschool,Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
I Dreamed I was a Ballerina
(by Anna Pavlova/illus. by Edgar Degas, Atheneum $18 Score:) Inspired by a performance of Sleeping Beauty, this is a brief girlhood memoir of the famous ballerina accompanied by paintings by Degas. Who knows what future ballerina this may inspire?

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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I Live in Tokyo
(by Mari Takabayashi, Houghton Mifflin $16 Score:) Using the framework of the months of the year, young readers are introduce to important sights of Tokyo, customs and special celebrations that fill the life of Mimiko, a seven-year-old girl.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
Shrek
(Dreamworks, Dreamworks $24.99 Score:) Based on William Steig's novel, the folks at Dreamworks have crafted a witty and visually stunning animated tale that has a valuable moral: that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Shrek, an endearing troll (Mike Myers), is sent by evil Lord Farquaad to rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) from the dragon guarded castle. Eddie Murphy plays Shrek's sidekick donkey and provides much of the comic relief. A giant of an animated tale! PG (for some language and crude humor) but would be fine for 5s & up. Available as video or DVD with a novel feature that allows viewers to voice-over parts and become part of the show.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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2002 Award
Gandhi
(by Demi, Simon & Schuster $19.95 Score:) Demi's paintings are jewel-like miniature studies that contrast with the life of a giant among men, Mahatma Gandhi. With grace and simplicity, Demi records the events in the life of man who changed the destiny of India and led the way to its independence.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2002.

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