Best of the Best: Lists for the End of 2014

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‘Tis the season for “Best of” lists, so I thought I’d pull together a few of the very best.

Best Books

School Library Journal has a great slideshow of their Best Books 2014, separated into useful categories. I use SLJ all year round to help me select the very best books to add to the library, and this list is truly the cream of the crop. The slideshow format is great, since you get to see the cover of each book, which (despite the famous aphorism) really helps to give you an idea of the book.

The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books releases a comprehensive list at the end of each year. The BCCB is a notable review journal that is published by the University of Illinois Champagne-Urbana’s School of Library and Information Science, consistently ranked in the top five of MLIS programs in the country. These folks know their stuff! The result is a downloadable PDF Guide Book to Gift Books that makes finding the perfect present for a child or teen in your life a breeze.

Best Apps

SLJ has also released a Top Ten Apps of 2014 list this year. This list covers all manner of educational apps that bring subjects to life, from science to math to history to literature to language.

If you’ve been following the Applewild Technology blog for a while, you know about my undying love of Common Sense Media. They have all kinds of “Best Of” lists year round, covering books, movies, video games, and more. I found this great list of the Best Holiday Apps on there, filled with treasures that are appropriate for kids of all ages.

CSM also created the ON for Learning Awards, which go to “the very best in kids’ digital media.” The list includes apps, websites, and video games, complete with age guidelines and comprehensive reviews.

Finally, the American Library Association has released its Best Apps for Teaching and Learning 2014. This is a fantastic list, curated with the American Association of School Librarians’ Standards for the 21st Century Learner in mind, that includes not only apps to use with your students, but also apps that will help you stay organized and connected.

Have a great Best Of list that you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments!

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