Valarie from Jump Into a Book and I are starting series of book lists to highlight our favorite multicultural children’s books. We plan to turn this into an eBook which we will give away next January for Multicultural Children’s Book Day and sell the rest of the year to raise money for our non-profit so that we can donate more books to kids.
I’m kicking off my lists with my favorite multicultural board books for babies and toddlers. I’ve always loved board books; they are full body entertainment for babies who might explore them with their teeth and virtually indestructible for toddlers! But it was surprisingly hard to find board books with diversity and inclusive themes. I hope you like my first list!
What are your favorite multicultural board books? Please share!
A few readers have asked me to post more on my entrepreneurial experience (b.k. — before kids). I co-founded a dorm room enterprise, now called Aquent, with two friends that has grown, now nearly 30 years later, into a mid-sized company (as defined by “less than one billion in sales but larger than one hundred million”).
It does feel like a different era now that I spend most of my time blogging, but starting my company also feels like just yesterday. The foundation of our business was the new Macintosh computer and desktop publishing software (PageMaker) that we learned to publish a liberal political magazine back in 1986.
The computerized version was less costly and time-consuming than the old way of waxing up galleys into place. Read more…
Grasshopper and Sensei turned 15-years-old recently which means my husband is going to start taking her to empty parking lots to learn to drive. She’s had some driving experience in golf carts and via Mario video driving games; enough for us to realize that she’s a cautious driver but needs to learn how to take corners.
My ninety-two-old mother in California is on the other end of the driving spectrum. She just stopped driving completely. She had tailed back by not driving at night or on highways a few years ago but now she’s done driving, relying on friends, my sister and Über instead.
In celebration of Easter, I wanted to share this video and two picture books about the Ukranian craft of egg painting called Pysanka.
A pysanka is a Ukrainian Easter egg, decorated with traditional Ukrainian folk designs using a wax-resist (batik) method. The word pysankacomes from the verb pysaty, “to write”, as the designs are not painted on, but written with beeswax.
Many other eastern European ethnic groups decorate eggs using wax resist for Easter. These include the Belarusians (пісанка, pisanka), Bulgarians (писано яйце, pisano yaytse),Croats (pisanica), Czechs (kraslice), Hungarians (hímestojás), Lithuanians (margutis), Poles (pisanka), Romanians (ouă vopsite, incondeiate or impistrite), Russians (расписанное яйцо “rаspisannoe yaitsо”), Serbs (pisanica), Slovaks (kraslica), Slovenes (pisanica,pirhi or remenke) and Sorbs (jejka pisać). from Wikipedia
This is Part 2 of the 2015 Notable Books for a Global Society Award, for middle grade readers ages 8 and up. I haven’t read them all so I’ll use book jacket blurbs with age range to make this list more helpful for parents and teachers looking for books for kids.
Many of these chapter books deal with difficult themes like genocide, racism, and violent civil wars. Will kids and parents actually put themselves through these kinds of experiences where the protagonist goes through unimaginable hell? I hope so. These are important stories that haven’t received the attention they deserve and if kids are aware of the mistakes made by their elders in the past, perhaps this is our best hope they will not be repeated in the future.
Part I from the list of picture books are here. I will post on the best young adult books from this list at the next Kid Lit Blog Hop. Read more…
It’s hard to get kids to try new things, be it new food, new sports or new summer camps. Sigh! I think it’s just a personality trait — risk taking. Grasshopper and Sensei who is my least risk taking child is the most resistant to trying new foods as well as sports! PickyKidPix, however, is a daredevil. She’ll eat off your plate at restaurants so as not to miss out on anything good. She’s also game to most sports. My son is somewhere in between.
I’ve been harping on my family about making healthy food choices since winter time is when things are dreary and it’s tough to get out. But I think that making healthy food choices starts at the supermarket; if you don’t bring it home, you don’t eat it.
Our issue is not the family dinner or packing lunches but snack time. My kids are ravenous right after school that they eat as much (or sometimes more) than they do at a meal. Sometimes it is due to their lunch which is scheduled unusually early at 10:30am. Sometimes my kids chat more than eat during lunch period. And sometimes they just don’t love their lunch.
Two of my kids are fascinated by the ukelele. My son, who plays guitar, was inspired by musician Jake Shimabukuro that he showed the video to his guitar teacher, and watched Jake’s videos on technique that he can apply to guitar later on when he gets more advanced.
Grasshopper and Sensei is learning the ukelele on her own after coveting a beautiful handmade ukelele found at a shop on vacation two years ago. I figured that after one year of asking for it, she must be serious, so I bought it for her the following year we returned.
My husband played golf for the University of Hawaii so Hawaii has a special place in his heart and he is equally surprised to learn that the ukelele is not actually from Hawaii! Read more…
Happy Pi Day! Get it? March 14th is 3.14! It’s especially appropriate this year, 2015, as the first few number of pi are 3.1415!
To celebrate, I dug up Pi Day cartoons! I hope you enjoy Pi Day today!!
The number π is a mathematical constant, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, commonly approximated as 3.14159. It has been represented by the Greek letter “π” since the mid-18th century, though it is also sometimes spelled out as “pi“.
Hi! I'm Mia Wenjen. I blog excessively about children's books. I am also the co-founder of Multicultural Children's Book Day on Jan 27th.
I'd love to chat with you. Let's connect! PragmaticMomBlog (at) gmail (dot) com.
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