Illinois children in grades K-3 who have read or heard at least 5 of the nominees may vote for their favorite book. The book which receives the most votes throughout the state will win the Monarch Award. This award is sponsored by the Illinois School Library Media Association and is designed to encourage Illinois students to read critically and to become familiar with children’s books, authors, and illustrators. The award is named in honor of the Monarch Butterfly, Illinois’ state insect. The butterfly symbolizes growth, change, and freedom-qualities that also characterize the emergent reader.