Archive for October, 2017

Funny Asian Fractured Fairy Tales

Funny Asian Fractured Fairy Tales

Funny fractured fairy tales are my jam, especially if you add in an Asian twist. What books have I left out? Thanks for your suggestions!

Funny Asian Fractured Fairy Tales

Ninja Red Riding Hood by Corey Rosen Swartz, illustrated by Dan Santat

The three little pigs started a ninja school and now the wolf can’t catch any prey. He joins the dojo to get some fighting skills and then goes out into the wood where he finds Little Red Riding Hood. Turns out she went to ninja school too. Because he can’t defeat Ninja Red, the wolf decides to go vegetarian and takes up yoga instead. There is also The Three Ninja Pigs, and Hansel and Gretel Ninja Chicks in this fun series.[picture book, ages 4 and up]

Goldy Luck and the Three Pandas by Natasha Yim, illustrated by Grace Zong

In this riff on Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Goldy Luck is a Chinese American girl who upsets her panda family neighbors. She eats their congee, sits in their chairs, and messes up their beds. Her conscience gets to her and she returns to make amends, just in time to help the pandas celebrate Chinese New Year. This is a fun picture book for kids to compare with the original fairy tale. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Read more…

fish Glass Blowing with My Girls

My Girls Learn Glass Blowing

My daughters fell in love with glass blowing after going to the Chihuly exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts a few years ago. They wanted to learn how to blow glass and there is a glass blowing school (Diablo Glass) near the museum, but, of course, it was booked solid for a year after the show.
Chihuly

Chihuly at Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. Photo from TripAdvisor.

We waited a year and tried again, and they both got a spot for a week long camp during the summer. It was a hot summer, as I recall. This is pertinent because the furnace for glass blowing is 800 degrees Fahrenheit, and they had to wear long sleeve t-shirts and pants for protection.

Glass Blowing with My GirlsGrasshopper and Sensei makes a seahorse working with hot glass and a blow torch. Read more…

Honey Lemon Ginger Tea and Honey Lemon cough drops

Honey Lemon Ginger Tea to Beat Cold and Flu Season

Tracking Pixel

I’ve teamed up with Star Market to share how my family deals with cold and flu season.

Have cold and flu season hit your family yet? We’ve already had our first round of colds, coinciding with our first week back to school. It’s not the best time to miss school!

Honey Lemon Ginger Tea and Honey Lemon cough drops

I find that tinctures — old fashioned teas steeped with herbs and fruit — help my kids beat a cold. The teas help to flush their system with fluids and the warmth soothes their dry sore throats. They also feel cared for. I’m sharing our Honey Lemon Ginger Tea recipe — it as easy to make as lemonade. Read more…

NaPiBoWriWee: My 7 Picture Books

NaPiBoWriWee: My 7 Picture Books

NaPiBoWriWee week was last month, and I attempted to write seven picture books in seven days. That didn’t go so well, but I did manage to write three picture books, edit two picture book manuscripts that I had written a few weeks earlier, and come up with four new picture book ideas.

I think that’s the point of NaPiBoWriWee week … even if you don’t hit your goal of writing seven picture books in seven weeks, you are much closer to your goal by just attempting it.

NAPIBOWRIWEE event

Next year, I will actually do some work prior to NaPiBoWriWee week so that I’ll have seven picture book ideas already conceived, with notes and research for each book. This is probably the only way I can actually pull off seven picture books in seven day.  Read more…

Native American Folklore by Native Americans

Native American Folklore & Creation Stories by Native Americans

You might have missed the drama caused when Nancy Bo Flood was invited to join the “Indigenous Experience in Children’s Literature” panel. Native American children’s book blogger, Debbie Reese objected:

“As regular readers of AICL know, I’ve been studying the ways Native peoples are depicted in children’s literature for decades. In that time, I’ve come to know the work of many people who–like Flood–are not Native, but write books about Native peoples. Amongst that body of White writers, there are many instances in which the writer has done particularly egregious things.”

Her objection is well said. The United States was founded on Native American genocide, with their lands taken away, their treaties violated, and their cultural heritage stolen through forced a boarding school system. In my opinion, it’s not right that their stories are stolen or “retold” by non-Native Americans unless there is explicit permission from the specific tribe.

To the best of my ability, I make this Native American folklore list as part of my Folk Tales series with books by just Native American authors. What am I missing? Thanks for your help.

p.s. My other Folk Tales posts include:

24 Wonderful Chinese Folk Tales for Kids

15 Great Korean Folk Tales for Kids

Filipino Folk Tales

21 Wonderful Japanese Folk Tales for Kids

Hawaiian Folk Tales and Children’s Books

 

Native American Folklore & Creation Stories by Native Americans

Beaver Steals Fire: A Salish Coyote Story told by the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, illustrated by Sam Sandoval

“This story represents thousands of years of oral tradition. In Beaver Steals Fire, fire is a gift from the Creator brought by the animal beings for human beings who are yet to come.” from Acknowledgements

“For those who use this book in the classroom, this story should be read or discussed only during winter when snow in on the ground. The elders usually bring out the stories in November and put them away again when the snow is gone. It is said that snakes will come to those who do not follow this custom or that cold weather will come during the warm months.” from A Note to the Reader

Since I do not want to disrespect the Salish and Kootenai traditions, and this is July, I am not reading the book as snow is not on the ground here in Boston and I certainly don’t wish for cold weather to come sooner than it already does. Please enjoy this book at the first snowfall. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Crossing Bok Chitto: A Choctaw Tale of Friendship & Freedom by Tim Tingle (a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma), illustrated by Jeanne Rorex Bridges (an artist of Cherokee ancestry)

Crossing Bok Chitto is a tribute to the Choctaws — and Cherokees and Creeks and Chickasaws and Seminoles — and Indians of every nation who aided the runaway people of bondage. from A Note on Choctaw Storytelling in the backmatter

In the days before the Trail of Tears, the river Bok Chitto was a boundary, separating the Choctaws from the Mississippi plantation owners. This river was the line between slavery and freedom for their slaves. When Martha Tom, a young Choctaw crossed the river in search of blackberries, she met Little Mo, a young black slave who helps her find her way home. Their friendship continued as the years passed, Martha Tom crossing Bok Chitto on her way to church and sitting with Little Mo’s family. When Little Mo’s mother was to be sold, Little Mo had a plan. His family, with the help of the Choctaws, would cross to freedom. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Following the singing of the Treaty of the Dancing Rabbit Creek in September of 1830, the government forced thousands of Choctaws from their homes in Mississippi. The Choctaws began the trek to Indian Territory, thus becoming the first travelers on the Trail of Tears. from Choctaws Today: Two Properous Nations, One Strong People in the backmatter

Read more…

Diversity, Inclusion & #Activate4Autism Movement

Diversity, Inclusion & #Activate4Autism Movement

Please welcome, Jodi Murphy of Geek Club Books, with today’s pots on #Activate4Autism movement.

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“When we speak about diversity and inclusion, it’s important to include everyone in our community, and that includes those on the autism spectrum. I activate my voice for autism.”

I’m speaking out for diversity and inclusion for all. For the last 3 years, I’ve participated in Multicultural Children’s Book Day because, like its founders Mia and Valerie, I believe that children must be able to find themselves in the books they read. Beyond seeing diversity in literature, I want to see inclusiveness spread into every aspect of our culture, especially for those on the autism spectrum.

Chances are someone in your community or social network is on the autism spectrum. You may not be aware of the challenges they face. Most grow up with a sense of shame because they’ve been stereotyped, judged as strange, and often bullied for being different. If you have a loved one with autism, you know how important it is that we help the public gain a deeper understanding of the autism experience. Read more…

Marc Gargaro boxing trainer for US National Elite Team

HOW TO COACH GIRLS Progress Report

We are so thrilled to have fifteen coaches lending their wisdom to How To Coach Girls. The lineup of coaches is below. After the interviews were conducted, two of these coaches received recognition:

Acacia Walker, Head Coach of Women’s Lacrosse, Boston College was named NCAA Division 1 Women’s Lacrosse Coach of the year!

Marc Gargaro, Boxing Trainer, Nonantum Boxing Club was selected as a national coach for both the men’s and women’s USA Boxing Elite National Team that competes in the Pan Am and Olympic games.

Marc Gargaro boxing trainer for US National Elite Team

With 70% of kids quitting organized sports by age 13 and girls quitting at six times the rate than boys, it’s clear the the priority for coaches and parents is to keep their girls in sport!

The benefits of sports for girls are numerous: higher self esteem, higher high school graduation rates, lower teen pregnancy rates, less issues with body image, travel opportunities, overcoming adversity, setting and reaching goals, making new friends, and fitness for life.

We hope our book will help parents feel confident to volunteer as coaches, and coaches to feel like they have a resource that has practical ideas for creating team chemistry and keeping girls engaged in sport.

Ainslee Lamb on how to keep girls in sport:

And now for our lineup of coaches:

Fabian (Fabe) Ardila, President at MGA Sports Inc., and High Performance Court Coach, USA Volleyball

Fabian (Fabe) Ardila has coached volleyball for almost 30 years. In addition to having held the position of Assistant Coach for Harvard University, he has coached high school volleyball for both boys and girls at Newton South, Wellesley, Sacred Heart, and Weston High Schools. He currently coaches at the club level for Smash Volleyball, as well as at his own club, MGA. For the U.S.A. Women’s National Volleyball Team, Fabe was a coach for the setters who competed at the Rio Olympics under Coach Karch Kiraly. He is currently working at U.S.A. Volleyball with high performance athletes, training future Olympians. Last, but certainly not least, he coached his three daughters who all play at an advanced level.

How to Coach Girls Read more…

#MistressOfAllEvil

#MistressOfAllEvil Prize Pack GIVEAWAY!

I’ve partnered with Disney Hyperion for this Mistress of All Evil Giveaway. They are supplying the prize package.

Why does Maleficent curse the innocent princess? What led to her becoming so filled with malice, anger, and hatred? Many tales have tried to explain her motives. Here is one account, pulled down from the many passed down through the ages. It is a tale of love and betrayal, of magic and reveries.

It is a tale of the Mistress of All Evil.

Are you excited for the fourth book in this series? I’m giving away a prize pack that includes all four books and a color changing branded mug! Read more…

FREE Classroom Empathy Kit: Immigration & Refugees

FREE Classroom Empathy Kit: Immigration & Refugees

Our FREE Classroom Empathy Kit is ready to download and share!

As our fifth Multicultural Children’s Book Day holiday approaches on January 27, 2018, we are thrilled to present our second Classroom Kit for teachers, librarians, parents, and guardians.

Our 2017 Multicultural Children’s Book Day Classroom Kindness Kit is here.

Our 2018 Classroom Empathy Kit has a special poster from award-winning author Juana Medina. This kit’s emphasis is on understanding the immigrants and refugee experience and includes a booklist along with some excellent activity ideas. Read more…