ALSC announces 2002 Notable Children's Videos

Contact: Laura Schulte Cooper


For Immediate Release

January 2002

ALSC announces 2002 Notable Children's Videos

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), has selected its 2002 list of Notable Children's Videos. The list includes videos for children 14 years of age and younger of especially commendable quality that demonstrate respect for a child's intelligence and imagination and that reflect and encourage the interests of children in exemplary ways. The list includes distributor and an annotation.

The videos selected are:

"Amelia's Moving Pictures"

Pleasant Company

Based on "Amelia's Notebook" by Marissa Moss, this lively animated film explores Amelia's feelings about moving from California to Oregon with her mom and sister, Cleo. Dramatic and spunky Amelia declares that moving day was absolutely, "the worst day of my life." Through imaginative drawings and humorous comments, Amelia's notebook is used to further illustrate the entire ordeal of packing, moving, leaving best friend Nadia and starting a new life in a new house and school.

"Ancient Greece"

Discovery Channel School This educational video follows the conquests of Alexander the Great, explores the philosophies of Socrates and Plato, and highlights the mythology of Homer's "Odyssey". Introduces students to the influences the ancient Greeks have had on Western civilization through interviews, vintage film clips and dramatizations.

"Badger's Parting Gifts"

GPN/Nebraska ETV Network and WNED-TV, Buffalo, N.Y. Part of the Reading Rainbow series, this video explores the way people deal with the loss of a loved one, including host LeVar Burton who shares memories and feelings about his late grandmother. The featured book is an iconographic presentation of Susan Varley's touching story about an old badger who dies, but is remembered fondly by his friends. Enhancing this remembrance episode are interviews with children using handmade artwork to honor loved ones who have died and members of the Alvin Ailey dance troupe who continue to pay tribute to the exuberant spirit of the dance company's original founder.

"Black Soul"

National Film Board of Canada

The Black experience powerfully comes to life through techniques of painting on glass under an animation camera to create imaginative explosions of shapes and colors that constantly change and transform. Pulsating rhythms emphasize each historical scene and wordlessly move the story from the shores of Africa to the snows of the Americas.


Spoken Arts

David Hyde Pierce brilliantly narrates this humorous tale of three sisters seeking buttons for their father's britches. This video lightheartedly contrasts the sisters' personalities as they strive to accomplish their goals. Classic iconographic techniques enhance this video adaptation of the book written and illustrated by Brock Cole.

"Christopher, Please Clean Up Your Room!"

National Film Board of Canada

In this hilarious animated tale, an international army of cockroaches descends upon Christopher's funky, smelly room at the request of his desperate pet fish, making for one unforgettable night that changes Christopher's cleaning habits forever. Based on the picture book by Itah Sadu with hip narration by the author, this video is part of the National Film Board of Canada's "Talespinners" series.

"Claude Monet"

Kiki & Associates, Inc.

The life of French Impressionist Claude Monet and his paintings are highlighted in this animated video inspired by Mike Venezia's "Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists" series. Through playful cartoon characters and examples of Monet's art, this important artist and his work become accessible and understandable to audiences young and old. Includes a list of paintings and locations.

"Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc.

When Farmer Brown's cows learn to type, his life changes drastically. The cows leave notes demanding electric blankets and even go on strike. Randy Travis narrates a delightful romp through the barnyard in this animated video from the Caldecott Honor book by Doreen Cronin, with illustrations by Betsy Lewin.

"Dying to Be Thin"

WGBH Boston Video

NOVA takes a disturbing look at the debilitating and sometimes life-threatening eating disorders that plague thousands of young American girls. Susan Sarandon narrates a documentary that investigates the causes, complexities, and treatments for the eating disorders anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa and introduces viewers to ballet dancers, fashion models, and other young women who are seeking recovery or who have overcome their disease.

"Elmo's Musical Adventure: The Story of Peter and the Wolf"

Sony Wonder

The Boston Pops Orchestra teams with the Sesame Street cast to present Sergei Prokofiev's musical story Peter and the Wolf. A double treat, the Muppets convey the story in a lively, silly, yet clear fashion and children are exposed to individual instruments and an entire pops orchestra.

"Georgia (Formerly of USSR): Nougzar in Georgia (Let's Dance! Series)"

New Dimension Media/A Questar Company Nougzar and his best friend share a passion for Georgian folk dance. Viewers participate in the behind-the-scenes dance lessons and an exciting stage production performed by a children's dance troupe. The pacing of both live action videography and narration match the fast rhythm and beat of Georgian drums and folk music.

"A Hunting Lesson"

National Film Board of Canada

Young Antoine's eccentric new neighbor is rumored to be a big game hunter. As their friendship grows, Antoine convinces the man to teach him to hunt. Based on the English adaptation of Jacques Godbout's book, this dramatic tale unfolds through the beauty of pinscreen images. Fine art animation brings to life the wild savannahs of Africa, the colors and textures of a Canadian autumn in hunting season, and captures the heartfelt emotions of the hunter and Antoine.

"I, Crocodile"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc.

Tim Curry's wry, witty narration and Raul Malo's whimsical score enlivens this sophisticated amusing story of a clever crocodile who is taken by the Emperor Napoleon from Egypt to captivity in Paris where he develops a new insatiable appetite…for people. An iconographic video based on Fred Marcellino's picture book.

"In the Small, Small Pond"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc. Bright, vibrant colors, sprightly music, and Laura Dern's soothing narration bring Denise Fleming's Caldecott Honor book to life. "Wiggle, waddle, shiver, quiver, sweep, scoop, and splash" through this delightful iconographic video.

"Joseph Had a Little Overcoat"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc. Simms Taback's Caldecott Medal winning story based on a Yiddish folk song about a clever tailor named Joseph, who always finds a way to make something out of nothing, comes alive in this video. Animation highlights the bright colors and patterns of eastern European folk art in a charming story narrated by Rob Reiner. The music and English words of the original folk song are included.

"My Louisiana Sky"

Hallmark Entertainment

During the most "auspicious" summer of her life, Tiger Ann experiences loss and grief, a first kiss, a glimpse of sophisticated city life, family secrets and ultimately finds her place in her world. This video, starring Juliette Lewis and directed by Adam Arkin, gracefully presents a richly woven tale based on the book by Kimberly Willis Holt.


Environmental Media

Using an entertaining and informative style, sixteen 15-minute programs explore concepts for understanding ecology and environmental issues. Snappy photography, exciting natural footage, animation, and a lively soundtrack make this video an engaging experience for children.

"The Old Man and the Sea"

Direct Cinema Limited

Presents a stunning fine art adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's classic novel, "The Old Man and the Sea," by world-renowned Russian animator Alexander Petrov who uses his fingertips to paint oil-on-glass animation. This masterpiece of artistic vision is combined with a story of friendship between a young boy and Santiago, an aging Cuban fisherman. In an epic struggle with a gigantic marlin, Santiago shows courage in defeat and personal triumph won from loss even though he must eventually come to terms with his failing abilities and age.

"The Railway Children"

WGBH Boston Video

Based on the 1906 novel by Edith Nesbit, this live action movie is set in turn of 20th century England. Three children and their mother move to Yorkshire and reduced circumstances after their father is forced to abruptly leave home one evening. The townspeople and its railway become a source of fun, adventure, and support, but will the children ever solve the mystery of their father's disappearance?

"Space Case"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc.

"The thing from outer space" joins Buddy and his friends on Halloween night and a wacky friendship develops. Spacey music and Christopher Lloyd's narration enliven this animated adaptation of the book by Edward Marshall with pictures by James Marshall.

"The Spooky Book"

Spoken Arts

Thunder rumbles, lightening crackles, and the wind howls as Andrew reads a book about a girl named ZoZo reading a book on a dark and stormy night. Where does the story end and the adventure begin in this iconographic version of Steve Patschke's "The Spooky Book?" Illustrated by Matthew McElligott.

"Trashy Town"

Weston Woods Studios, Inc.

"Dump it in, smash it down, drive around the Trashy Town" with energetic trash man Mr. Gilly. Playful animation and a catchy musical score make this video based on the book by Andrea Zimmerman and David Clemesha with illustrations by Dan Yaccarino lots of good clean fun.

"Vincent van Gogh"

Kiki & Associates, Inc.

Dutch Post-Impressionist Vincent van Gogh's paintings combine with playful animated storytelling to convey an engaging and inventive story of his creative life and legacy. Based on Mike Venezia's "Getting to Know the World's Greatest Artists" series, the video includes a list of some of van Gogh's paintings and their locations.


Spoken Arts

Ikarus Jackson follows his heart in this story celebrating uniqueness. Adapted from the book by Christopher Myers, the luminous textured illustrations are given an exciting new dimension in this iconographic production featuring passionate narration by Tatyana M. Ali.

For more information, including recommended ages and ISBN, visit the
ALSC Web site.

Members of the 2002 Notable Children's Videos Committee are: Elizabeth B. Miller, chair, College of Library and Information Science, University of South Carolina, Columbia; Paula Brehm-Heeger, Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (Ohio); Martha Edmundson, Denton (Texas) Public Library; Crystal Faris, Nassau Library System, Uniondale, N.Y.; Debra S. Gold, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Parma Heights, Ohio; Walter Metz, Columbia, S.C.; Edward T. Sullivan, White Pine (Tenn.) School Library; Margaret Tice, New York Public Library; Kathryn Lee Whitacre, Free Library of Philadelphia; Deanna Christine Wolf, Queens Borough Public Library, Long Island City, N.Y.; Kim M. Woo, Los Angeles Public Library; and Stephen A. Zampino, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, Conn.