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Panda Book Awards


Welcome to the Panda Book Awards


Join the conversation. Post pictures and activities of your panda book awards projects on the Panda Book Awards social media and share the fun. #pandabookawards



READ some good books

SHARE your thoughts

NETWORK with students from participating schools

VOTE for your favorite.



What is the Panda Book Award?

The Panda Book Award, initiated in 2008 by librarian Nadine Dewit Rosevear, invites students and teachers from participating international schools in China and beyond to vote for their favorite book published in the previous school year.


Titles chosen for the shortlists of the Panda Book Award meet selection criteria that focus on social justice, diversity and inclusion by up and coming authors and illustrators from across the world. There is an added spotlight on titles that feature Asian settings, characters or creators. 


The Panda Book Steering Committee, which includes an international representation of school librarians, is responsible for collecting input from schools, advertising the initiative, and organizing the voting.


There are seven separate title lists according to age level:

  • Early Years Readers (3-5 years) - picture books - Elementary School
  • Young Readers (5-8 years) – picture books - Elementary School
  • Middle Readers (7 to 10 years) – chapter books - Elementary School
  • Elementary School Graphic Novels
  • Older Readers (11 to 14 years) – Middle School
  • Mature Readers (15 to 18 years) – High School
  • Middle/High School Graphic Novels


The panda was chosen as the program’s mascot as it holds a special place in the hearts of the Chinese people and is a symbol of peace and a token of forging friendly ties.

The Panda Book Award reading program promises to take our students on an exciting reading adventure. Classroom teachers, language arts teachers, and librarians are encouraged to distribute the reading lists to their students and to incorporate them into their daily teaching.



How can schools participate?

Fill out the registration survey (see left hand side of the page). This will ensure that your school's name will appear on the Panda voting site that you will receive by email in the lead up to voting.

Your students will have three weeks to cast their votes.


The Panda Award yearly timeline


December - January : nominating titles for next year

  • Each participating school nominates lists of titles. These lists are discussed by the Panda Book Steering Committee who will take into consideration individual schools’ requests.
  • The Steering Committee will decide on the final lists and make these public by mid March. This gives participating schools time to order multiple copies of the titles to arrive over the summer.


July – August :

  • Schools may promote the titles through a summer reading program.


September – Chinese New Year: activities in schools culminating in voting

  • Schools organize reading promotion activities and plan. Promotional materials (flyers, posters, bookmarks) are created yearly and available for download.
  • The Panda Book Steering Committee organizes the student and teacher voting sessions to be done during a period of three weeks after the Chinese New Year holiday.
  • 2020-2021: Voting has been delayed until March due to COVID19 induced book arrival delays. Voting will close on May 7th 2021.


After the voting : and the winners are....

  • The Steering Committee meets to count votes and confirm the winners of the Panda Book Awards.
  • Winning authors are contacted as soon as possible and are sent their Panda Award Winner scroll.