Center for Children’s Literature

The Cook Prize

Presented for the first time in 2012, the Cook Prize is named in memory of two ground breaking Bank Street educators – Don Cook of the Graduate School of Education, and Michael Cook (no relation) of the School for Children. In naming this award, Bank Street not only honors Michael and Don for their intangible contributions to the world of education, but encourages excellence in publishing informational books on STEM topics for elementary-aged children.

Cook Prize Seal

Our Mission

The Cook Prize honors the best science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) picture book for children aged eight to ten. It is the only national children’s choice award honoring a STEM book. The Cook Prize is administered with support from School Library Journal. The award is presented in May.
Design of the Cook Prize Seal

The Cook Prize Ceremony

Over 5,000 children in the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia and the United Arab Emirates will participate in the voting process. The winner and honorees will accept their awards on Thursday, May 14, 2020.  The event will be open to the public.  Caldecott winner Sophie Blackall will keynote.  The ceremony will be livestreamed, and a URL will be posted soon. To view last year’s ceremony use this  KidLitTV link.

2020 Cook Prize Contenders

Flower Talk
Flower Talk
Hedy Lamarr's Double Life
Hedy Lamarr
Mario and the Hole in the Sky
Secret Engineer
Secret Engineer
  • Flower Talk: How Plants Use Color to Communicate  by Sara Levine; illustrated by Masha D’Yans  (Millbrook Press: A Division of Lerner Publishing Group)
  • Hedy Lamarr’s Double Life by Laurie Wallmark; illustrated by Katy Wu (Sterling Children’s Books)
  • Mario and the Hole in the Sky: How a Chemist Saved Our Planet by Elizabeth Rusch; illustrated by Teresa Martínez (Charlesbridge)
  • Secret Engineer: How Emily Roebling Built the Brooklyn Bridge, by Rachel Dougherty (Roaring Brook Press)

Counting on Katherine

2019 Cook Prize Winner

Counting on Katherine
by Helaine Becker; illustrated by Dow Phumiruk (Christy Ottaviano Books, Henry Holt and Company)

Honor Books

  • Fossil by Fossil: Comparing Dinosaur Bones by Sara Levine, illustrated by T.S. Spookytooth (Millbrook Press/Lerner)
  • If Polar Bears Disappeared by Lily Williams (Roaring Brook Press)
  • Nothing Stopped Sophie: The Story of Unshakable Mathematician Sophie German by Cheryl Bardoe; illustrated by Barbara McClintock (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)