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    Multicultural Children’s Book Day: Sweet Dreams, Sarah by Vivian Kirkfield (A Book Review)

    Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of this book from the author to share my review as part of Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019.  As always, all opinions expressed are my own.  Thank you to the Multicultural Children’s Book Day Team for selecting me as a reviewer and a co-host!

    Sweet Dreams, Sarah: From Slavery to Inventor by Vivian Kirkfield, illustrated by Chris Ewald

    Publisher: Creston Books
    Format: Hardcover
    Pages: 32
    Age Range: 5 – 9
    Grade Level: Kindergarten – 4

    Synopsis
    Sarah E.Goode was one of the first African-American women to get a U.S. patent. Working in her husband’s furniture store, she recognized a need for a multi-use bed and through hard work, ingenuity, and determination, invented her unique cupboard bed. She built more than a piece of furniture. She built a life far away from slavery, a life where her sweet dreams could come true.

    Reflection
    Prior to reading Sweet Dreams, Sarah: From Slavery to Inventor I had never heard of Sarah E. Good before.  I can honestly say I was blown away to learn about this woman.  Why didn’t I learn about her and countless other inventors in school when I was growing up?  It just goes to show there are a myriad of inventions created by Black people that are still unbeknownst to many.  I’m so glad author Vivian Kirkfield decided to write this book and understands the importance to highlight contributions of African-Americans as inspiration for our present and our future.

    Born into slavery, inventor and entrepreneur Sarah E.Goode was the first African-American woman to be granted a patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, for her invention of a folding cabinet bed on July 14, 1885.  When Sarah moved to Chicago later in life, that’s where she met her husband, Archibald Goode.  Her husband worked as a stair case builder and an upholsterer, and Sarah was the owner of a furniture store.


    Most of Sarah’s customers lived in very small houses or apartments with cramped spaces.  As a result, they couldn’t buy a lot of furniture since they complained that their homes couldn’t accommodate too many items.  This is what drove Sarah Goode to invent the folding cabinet bed.  She put on her thinking cap and went to work putting her masterful carpentry skills into full action.  The bed that Sarah invented doubled as both a desk and a bed.  Most importantly, it was compact which was exactly what her customers needed.

    I truly enjoyed reading about Sarah Goode’s story!  Not only was the story well written accompanied by vivid and lively illustrations, it was also engaging and highly inspiring too.  I loved Sarah’s drive and determination to press on in spite of the obstacles she faced and rejection letters she received.  I can only imagine how proud she must have felt to be the first Black woman to receive a U.S. patent for something that she created.  Glory!  Her idea filled a void in the lives of many, it was practical and many people appreciated it.  Kudos to Sarah for opening up the doorway for many women to come after her and obtain their own patents!


    The back matter of this book contains an author’s note, additional information about what a patent is, a timeline of Sarah Goode’s life and a handy timeline of Black women patent holders.

    Aspiring entrepreneurs, inventors and lovers of history are likely to be just as inspired by Sarah’s story as I was.  I’m thrilled to be able to share this story with my children and so many others in honor of Multicultural Children’s Book Day.  Look for Sweet Dreams, Sarah: From Slavery to Inventor when it publishes in May 2019.

    Your turn:  Have you ever heard of Sarah E. Goode prior to reading this review?  If you’re curious about other items invented by Black inventors, you might enjoy reading this blog post.

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019 (1/25/19) is in its 6th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

    MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board!

    *View our 2019 Medallion Sponsors here: https://wp.me/P5tVud-
    *View our 2019 MCBD Author Sponsors here: https://wp.me/P5tVud-2eN

    Medallion Level Sponsors

    Honorary: Children’s Book CouncilThe Junior Library GuildTheConsciousKid.org.

    Super Platinum: Make A Way Media

    GOLD: Bharat BabiesCandlewick PressChickasaw Press, Juan Guerra and The Little Doctor / El doctorcitoKidLitTV,  Lerner Publishing GroupPlum Street Press,

    SILVER: Capstone PublishingCarole P. RomanAuthor Charlotte RiggleHuda EssaThe Pack-n-Go Girls,

    BRONZE: Charlesbridge PublishingJudy Dodge CummingsAuthor Gwen JacksonKitaab WorldLanguage Lizard – Bilingual & Multicultural Resources in 50+ LanguagesLee & Low BooksMiranda Paul and Baptiste Paul, RedfinAuthor Gayle H. Swift,  T.A. Debonis-Monkey King’s DaughterTimTimTom BooksLin ThomasSleeping Bear Press/Dow PhumirukVivian Kirkfield

    MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board

    Honorary: Julie FlettMehrdokht AminiAuthor Janet BallettaAuthor Kathleen BurkinshawAuthor Josh FunkChitra SoundarOne Globe Kids – Friendship StoriesSociosights Press and Almost a MinyanKaren LeggettAuthor Eugenia ChuCultureGroove BooksPhelicia Lang and Me On The PageL.L. WaltersAuthor Sarah StevensonAuthor Kimberly Gordon BiddleHayley BarrettSonia PanigrahAuthor Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing DreidelsAuthor Susan BernardoMilind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu KidTara WilliamsVeronica AppletonAuthor Crystal BoweDr. Claudia MayAuthor/Illustrator Aram KimAuthor Sandra L. RichardsErin DealeyAuthor Sanya Whittaker GraggAuthor Elsa TakaokaEvelyn Sanchez-ToledoAnita BadhwarAuthor Sylvia LiuFeyi Fay AdventuresAuthor Ann MorrisAuthor Jacqueline JulesCeCe & Roxy BooksSandra Neil Wallace and Rich WallaceLEUYEN PHAMPadma VenkatramanPatricia Newman and Lightswitch LearningShoumi SenValerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci SorellShereen RahmingBlythe StanfelChristina MatulaJulie RubiniPaula ChaseErin TwamleyAfsaneh MoradianLori DeMonia, Claudia Schwam, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls RevolutionSoulful SydneyQueen Girls Publications, LLC

    We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

    Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts

    A Crafty ArabAgatha Rodi BooksAll Done MonkeyBarefoot MommyBiracial Bookworms, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms ShareColours of UsDiscovering the World Through My Son’s EyesDescendant of Poseidon ReadsEducators Spin on it Growing Book by BookHere Wee Read, Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin LeeJump Into a BookImagination Soup,Jenny Ward’s ClassKid World CitizenKristi’s Book NookThe LogonautsMama SmilesMiss Panda ChineseMulticultural Kid BlogsRaising Race Conscious ChildrenShoumi SenSpanish Playground

    TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party. GO HERE for more details.

    FREE RESOURCES From MCBD

    Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

    Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

    Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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    Multicultural Children’s Book Day: No Kimchi for Me! (A Book Review)

    No Kimchi for Me! by Aram Kim

    Publisher: Holiday House
    Format: Hardcover
    Pages: 40
    Age Range: 3-7
    Grade Level: Preschool – 2

    Synopsis
    Yoomi hates stinky, spicy kimchi―the pickled cabbage condiment served at Korean meals. So her brothers call her a baby and refuse to play with her.

    Yoomi is determined to eat kimchi. She tries to disguise it by eating it on a cookie, on pizza, and in ice cream. But that doesn’t work. Then Grandma shows Yoomi how to make kimchi pancakes. This story about family, food, and a six-year-old “coming of age” has universal themes, and at the same time celebrates Korean culture. A kimchi pancake recipe and other back matter are included.

    Reflection
    Thank you to Holiday House for sending me this book to review for Multicultural Children’s Book Day!

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/18) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Their mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

    Do your children have any food aversions? When both of my kids were babies they ate practically anything I made for them. Now as they’ve gotten older, they have become somewhat fussy about eating certain foods. My son tends to be particular picky about the texture and look of some meats.  But aren’t we all a little picky sometimes?  Besides, isn’t it normal for children to be fussy eaters anyway? It’s a way of exploring their environment and asserting their independence.  Little Yoomi illustrates this point very well in the book No Kimchi for Me!

    The kids and I really enjoyed this cute story!  I especially liked the clever grandmother for finding a creative way to expand Yoomi’s culinary horizons by making a kimchi pancake.  All it took was a little exploring in the kitchen.  Is Yoomi cured of thinking kimchi is too stinky or spicy?  Not by a long shot.  But she is feeling braver about eating it and she’s proud of herself for having conquered something new and proving to her brothers she’s a big girl.  A simple recipe for making kimchi pancakes is included in the back matter.

    Pair this book with another one of our favorite Asian food-themed picture books Bee-Bim-Bop by Linda Sue Park for a fun story time session.

    What is Kimchi?
    Kimchi is a traditional korean dish made of fermented vegetables and seasonings.  It’s considered to be one of the world’s healthiest foods.  Kimchi is often eaten as a condiment or side dish and is also used as an ingredient in stew, soup and fried rice.

    More Information About Multicultural Children’s Book Day

    Current Sponsors: MCBD 2018 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.

    2018 MCBD Medallion Sponsors

    HONORARY: Children’s Book Council, Junior Library Guild

    PLATINUM: Scholastic Book Clubs

    GOLD: Audrey Press, Candlewick Press, Loving Lion Books, Second Story Press, Star Bright Books, Worldwide Buddies

    SILVER:Capstone Publishing, Author Charlotte Riggle, Child’s Play USA, KidLit TV, Pack-n-Go Girls, Plum Street Press

    BRONZE: Barefoot Books, Carole P. Roman, Charlesbridge Publishing, Dr. Crystal BoweGokul! World, Green Kids Club, Gwen Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Juan J. Guerra, Language Lizard, Lee & Low Books, RhymeTime Storybooks, Sanya Whittaker Gragg, TimTimTom Books, WaterBrook & Multnomah, Wisdom Tales Press

    2018 Author Sponsors

    Honorary Author Sponsors: Author/Illustrator Aram Kim and Author/Illustrator Juana Medina

    Author Janet Balletta, Author Susan BernardoAuthor Carmen Bernier-Grand, Author Tasheba Berry-McLaren and Space2Launch, Bollywood Groove Books, Author Anne BroylesAuthor Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Eugenia Chu, Author Lesa Cline-Ransome, Author Medeia Cohan and Shade 7 Publishing, Desi Babies, Author Dani Dixon and Tumble Creek Press, Author Judy Dodge Cummings, Author D.G. Driver, Author Nicole Fenner and Sister Girl Publishing, Debbi Michiko Florence, Author Josh Funk, Author Maria Gianferrari, Author Daphnie Glenn, Globe Smart Kids, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Author Quentin Holmes, Author Esther Iverem, Jennifer Joseph: Alphabet Oddities, Author Kizzie Jones, Author Faith L Justice , Author P.J. LaRue and MysticPrincesses.com, Author Karen Leggett Abouraya, Author Sylvia Liu, Author Sherri Maret, Author Melissa Martin Ph.D., Author Lesli Mitchell, Pinky Mukhi and We Are One, Author Miranda Paul, Author Carlotta Penn, Real Dads Read, Greg Ransom, Author Sandra L. Richards, RealMVPKids Author Andrea Scott, Alva Sachs and Three Wishes Publishing, Shelly Bean the Sports QueenAuthor Sarah Stevenson, Author Gayle H. Swift Author Elsa Takaoka, Author Christine Taylor-Butler, Nicholette Thomas and  MFL Publishing  Author Andrea Y. Wang, Author Jane Whittingham  Author Natasha Yim

    We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

    TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Scholastic Book Clubs: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/27/18 at 9:00pm EST.

    Join the conversation and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party! http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party-great-conversations-fun-prizes-chance-readyourworld-1-27-18/

    Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

    Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

    Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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    black history, book reviews, children's books, multicultural children's book day

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day: Before She Was Harriet (A Book Review)

    Before She Was Harriet by Lesa Cline-Ransome, illustrated by James E. Ransome

    Publisher: Holiday House
    Format: Hardcover
    Pages: 32
    Age Range: 4-7
    Grade Level: Kindergarten – 2

    Synopsis
    We know her today as Harriet Tubman, but in her lifetime she was called by many names. As General Tubman she was a Union spy. As Moses she led hundreds to freedom on the Underground Railroad. As Minty she was a slave whose spirit could not be broken. An evocative poem and opulent watercolors come together to honor a woman of humble origins whose courage and compassion make her larger than life.

    Reflection
    I’m thrilled to be reviewing this book as a co-host for Multicultural Children’s Book Day!  Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/18) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Their mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

    Before She Was Harriet is written in beautiful, verse-like poetic text. The text is accompanied by gorgeous and very detailed watercolor illustrations that help bring each word to life. With the turn of each page, readers are introduced to a new role that Tubman had during her lifetime: suffragist, general, union spy, nurse, aunt and underground railroad conductor. Harriet Tubman was born a slave, her parents named her Araminta “Minty” Ross. She changed her name in 1849 when she escaped.

    I love that the author chose to tell Harriet’s story in reverse chronological order from her later days as an older woman to her earliest days as a young slave girl.  The book ends in the most poignant way possible with Harriet riding on the train as a free woman.  What an honor it must have been to be able to ride on the train freely after all she went through during her days as the leader of the Underground Railroad.  It was so powerful for me to see everything in her life come full circle.

    While this book doesn’t include an author’s note, a timeline, or any additional biographical information about Harriet Tubman, it is a beautiful tribute and brief introduction to her life.  I think this poetry book would inspire readers to want to learn more about Tubman.

    Before She Was Harriet challenged me to fill my life with the brilliant history of a woman who has made her own choices just like Harriet did.  I’m inspired to slowly begin to slowly peel back the layers of my own life until the very core of my being is revealed.  As I get older it’s become clear that each pivotal point in my life often requires changes for growth to continue. Thanks to Harriet Tubman for reminding me to elevate my consciousness, and embrace a new sense of freedom to find my place in this challenging world.  Thank you for helping me to discover my power just as you did.  I can now pass along these messages and this beautiful book to my own children.

    Check this one out for your home or school library.  Perfect for reading during Black History Month, Women’s History Month or any time of the year.  Recommended for ages 4-7 and up.

    More Information About Multicultural Children’s Book Day

    Current Sponsors: MCBD 2018 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.

    2018 MCBD Medallion Sponsors

    HONORARY: Children’s Book Council, Junior Library Guild

    PLATINUM: Scholastic Book Clubs

    GOLD: Audrey Press, Candlewick Press, Loving Lion Books, Second Story Press, Star Bright Books, Worldwide Buddies

    SILVER:Capstone Publishing, Author Charlotte Riggle, Child’s Play USA, KidLit TV, Pack-n-Go Girls, Plum Street Press

    BRONZE: Barefoot Books, Carole P. Roman, Charlesbridge Publishing, Dr. Crystal BoweGokul! World, Green Kids Club, Gwen Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Juan J. Guerra, Language Lizard, Lee & Low Books, RhymeTime Storybooks, Sanya Whittaker Gragg, TimTimTom Books, WaterBrook & Multnomah, Wisdom Tales Press

    2018 Author Sponsors

    Honorary Author Sponsors: Author/Illustrator Aram Kim and Author/Illustrator Juana Medina

    Author Janet Balletta, Author Susan BernardoAuthor Carmen Bernier-Grand, Author Tasheba Berry-McLaren and Space2Launch, Bollywood Groove Books, Author Anne BroylesAuthor Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Eugenia Chu, Author Lesa Cline-Ransome, Author Medeia Cohan and Shade 7 Publishing, Desi Babies, Author Dani Dixon and Tumble Creek Press, Author Judy Dodge Cummings, Author D.G. Driver, Author Nicole Fenner and Sister Girl Publishing, Debbi Michiko Florence, Author Josh Funk, Author Maria Gianferrari, Author Daphnie Glenn, Globe Smart Kids, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Author Quentin Holmes, Author Esther Iverem, Jennifer Joseph: Alphabet Oddities, Author Kizzie Jones, Author Faith L Justice , Author P.J. LaRue and MysticPrincesses.com, Author Karen Leggett Abouraya, Author Sylvia Liu, Author Sherri Maret, Author Melissa Martin Ph.D., Author Lesli Mitchell, Pinky Mukhi and We Are One, Author Miranda Paul, Author Carlotta Penn, Real Dads Read, Greg Ransom, Author Sandra L. Richards, RealMVPKids Author Andrea Scott, Alva Sachs and Three Wishes Publishing, Shelly Bean the Sports QueenAuthor Sarah Stevenson, Author Gayle H. Swift Author Elsa Takaoka, Author Christine Taylor-Butler, Nicholette Thomas and  MFL Publishing  Author Andrea Y. Wang, Author Jane Whittingham  Author Natasha Yim

    We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

    TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Scholastic Book Clubs: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/27/18 at 9:00pm EST.

    Join the conversation and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party! http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party-great-conversations-fun-prizes-chance-readyourworld-1-27-18/

    Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

    Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

    Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

    Share:
    children's books, multicultural children's book day

    It’s Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2018!


    I’m thrilled to be supporting the upcoming Multicultural Children’s Book Day as one of this year’s co-hosts!  

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day (1/27/18) is in its 5th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Their mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

    This year I had the pleasure of reviewing three fantastic books which was a real treat!

    The best part about Multicultural Children’s Book Day is anyone from anywhere in the world can be a part of the celebration!  There will be a TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Scholastic Book Clubs: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party it be held 1/27/18 at 9:00pm.

    Join the conversation on Twitter and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party! http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party-great-conversations-fun-prizes-chance-readyourworld-1-27-18/

    There is also a chance to receive Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

    And… a Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

    As you can see, there will be something for just about everyone.  So be sure to take advantage of everything this mega literacy event has to offer!

    Connect with MCCBD!
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MulticulturalChildrensBookDay
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/MCChildsBookDay
    Official Hashtag: #ReadYourWorld

    Your turn: How will you be celebrating Multicultural Children’s Book Day with your little readers? Feel free share in the comments.

    Link up your MCCBD blog post review here!

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    book reviews, children's books, multicultural children's book day

    Once Upon a World: New Multicultural Fairy Tale Books for Kids!

    As a kid, I used to love reading fairy tales because they are unlike any other kind of story. They’re magical, enchanting tales where anything is possible and they always end with the line ‘and they lived happily ever after’.  We all know that situations in life don’t always have happy endings, but I think sometimes it’s nice to revisit some of my childhood fairy tale favorites.

    Every once in a while I come across an amazing book that I find randomly while browsing at the bookstore.  My most recent discovery is the new series of board books called ‘Once Upon a World’ written by Chloe Perkins.  Have you seen these gems yet?  These unique board books take the classic fairy tales we all know and love and gives them a beautiful multicultural makeover.  The illustrations are simply gorgeous!

    There are currently two books in the series based on the fairy tales Snow White and Cinderella.  The Snow White book features Japan as the backdrop and Cinderella is set in Mexico.   Cinderella is still the same girl with a fairy godmother and a glass slipper and Snow White is still the same girl who meets seven dwarves and accepts a shiny red apple, but both characters are totally reimagined.

    onceuponaworldsnowwhite1

    onceuponaworldsnowwhite2

    I love these books because they help change the way children see the world.  Who says Snow White and Cinderella always have to look the same way?  I like the fact that the author didn’t retell these fairy tales, she simply reimagined the characters.  Unlike fairy tale retellings, the characters in these books have their same names and story lines.  And don’t worry, little readers will still be comforted by a guaranteed ending where everyone lives happily ever after.

    onceuponaworldcinderella1

    onceuponaworldcinderella2

    I’m looking forward to seeing the rest of the books in this series like Rapunzel set to publish in March 2017.  That book will feature India as the backdrop with a beautiful Indian girl playing the role of Rapunzel.  Priced at less than $10.00, I think these books make the perfect gift for little readers who enjoy classic fairy tales.  Little readers of different cultures will treasure these books and delight in the fact that the characters look like them.

    onceuponaworldrapunzel

    About the Author
    Chloe Perkins is the editor and author of a few dozen books for children. She lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with her husband, Rico, and their corgi puppy/sometimes shark, Marius. Growing up in a small town in Ohio, Chloe always dreamed of writing stories that could take kids on their own reading adventures, and she’s thrilled to be doing just that!

    Your turn: Will you be checking these books out with your little readers?  Feel free to share in the comments.

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    a book and a craft, book reviews, multicultural children's book day

    Drum Dream Girl: A Book Review #ReadYourWorld

    Happy Multicultural Children’s Book Day!

    I am so excited to be chosen as a Multicultural Children’s Book Day (MCCBD) reviewer this year!

    The book I was sent to review is Drum Dream Girl written by Margarita Engle and beautifully illustrated by Rafael Lopez.  Although I previously read this book with the kids before, I was delighted to receive a copy to add to our home library!

    Drum Dream Girl by Margarita Engle
    IMG_0646
    This book is based on the true story of a young girl named Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, a Chinese-African-Cuban who broke down barriers for female drummers in Cuba in the 1930s.  Back in those days, there was an unwritten rule that stated girls cannot be drummers.  No one dared to question that rule – that is until little Millo came along.  She thought both boys and girls should be free to play the drums, but everyone else disagreed including her father.

    Millo dreamed of pounding tall congas and tapping small bongós.  She hoped her dream would some day come true, but until that day came, she kept on dreaming and practicing in secret on her own.  Millo’s father understood how much his daughter loves playing the drums, so one day he finds her a teacher who helps to perfect her drumming skills.  Finally, Millo is ready to play the drums in a cafe on the street to show that girls can play drums too.  It was during that performance that everyone decided that indeed both girls and boys should be free to drum and dream.

    It was refreshing to revisit this book with the kids.  They really liked all the bold colors and illustrations and I loved the overall message which tells children to follow their dreams.  It was interesting to hear my daughter say, “Look Mommy, I can play the drums!” as she ran off and got her drum set right after I finished reading the book.  It’s amazing how far we’ve come from the 1930s when it was taboo for women and girls to have the freedom to do the things their hearts desired.

    Extension Activities
    There are lots of different extension activities you can do with kids after reading this book.  Below are two examples.

    Have a Discussion

    • Talk about the idea that only boys should play drums.  Do you think it’s unfair or reasonable?
    • Talk about different things that people today think is only for boys or only for girls.

    Make a Drum (or another musical instrument)!
    Since the Chinese New Year is coming up, we decided to do a Chinese drum craft activity using paper plates.  It was fun!  We got the idea from Pinterest.

    Here’s what we used:

    • Two paper plates (or bowls)
    • Paint (we used red and gold glitter paint)
    • Paintbrush
    • Glue gun (or stapler)
    • 1 craft stick
    • Yarn
    • Two buttons (you can also use jingle bells)

    FullSizeRender

    Want to learn more about the Multicultural Children’s Book Day organization?
    Our mission:  The MCCBD team’s mission to spread the word and raise awareness about the importance of diversity in children’s literature. Our young readers need to see themselves within the pages of a book and experience other cultures, languages, traditions and religions within the pages of a book. We encourage readers, parents, teachers, caregivers and librarians to follow along the fun book reviews, author visits, event details, a multicultural children’s book linky and via our hashtag (#ReadYourWorld) on Twitter and other social media.

    The co-creators of this unique event are Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom and Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book/Audrey Press. You can find a bio for Mia and Valarie here.

    Platinum Sponsors: Story Quest Books.Wisdom Tales PressLil’ Libros

    Gold Sponsors: Candlewick PressTori Nighthawk: Don’t Judge A Bird By its FeathersBharat Babies

    Silver Sponsors:Lee & Low BooksChronicle BooksCapstone Young ReadersChina Institute.orgTuttle PublishingNY Media Works, LLC/KidLit TV

    Bronze Sponsors: Jacqueline Woodson, Pomelo BooksPapa Lemon BooksGoosebottom Books LLCAuthor Gleeson Rebello, M.D .Shout Mouse PressMahvash ShaheghLiveOak Media

    Our CoHosts
    Multicultural Children’s Book Day has 12 amazing co-Hosts and you can view them here.

    Classroom Reading Challenge: Help spread the word on our Classroom Reading Challenge . This very special offering from MCCBD offers teachers and classrooms the chance to (very easily) earn a free hardcover multicultural children’s book for their classroom library. These books are not only donated by the Junior Library Guild, but they are pre-screened and approved by them as well.

    What we could really use some help with is spreading the word to your teacher/librarian/classroom connections so we can get them involved in this program. There is no cost to teachers and classrooms and we’ve made the whole process as simple as possible. You can help by tweeting the below info:

    Teachers! Earn a FREE #Multicultural Kids Book for Your Classroom! #teachers, #books #teacherlife
    http://ow.ly/UUy96

    The Classroom Reading Challenge has begun! Teachers can earn a free diversity book! #teachers, #books
    http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/?p=1796

    Connect with MCCBD!
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MulticulturalChildrensBookDay
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/MCChildsBookDay
    Official Hashtag:  #ReadYourWorld

    Multicultural_Paint_R.LiuTrujillo2-240x300

    Your turn:  How will you be celebrating Multicultural Children’s Book Day with your little readers?  Feel free share in the comments.

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    book giving day, multicultural children's book day, national dictionary day, national library week, national picture book month, national poetry month

    15+ Literary Events & Holidays You Should Know

    Hooray for fun children’s and young adult literature events!   You can find them being celebrated from coast to coast all across the country and internationally as well.

    I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time keep track of all those hard-to-remember literary dates.  You know, National Dictionary Day, Take Your Child to the Library Day, etc.  I think it’s great that there are so many opportunities to get involved and promote literacy, reading and books, but sometimes I find it hard to recall when they take place throughout the year.  That’s why I decided to write this blog post to use it as a reference for myself and others.

    If you’re a literature lover like me, I hope you’ll appreciate having this list of dates handy to refer to throughout the year.  Enjoy!

    January

    National Letter Writing Week
    The purpose of National Letter Writing Week is to encourage and foster the advancement of international understanding, better human relations, friendship, good will, and peace through a world fellowship of men and women of good will.

    This year it will be celebrated on January 13 – January 19, 2019.

    Multicultural Children’s Book Day
    The mission of Multicultural Children’s Book Day is to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these of books into classrooms and libraries.

    Children’s reading and play advocates Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book and Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom have teamed up to create an ambitious (and much needed) national event. On January 27th, 2014 Jump into a Book and Pragmatic Mom presented their very first Multicultural Children’s Book Day as a way of celebrating diversity in children’s books. The results and support overwhelming as authors, publishers, parents, teachers, bloggers and librarians joined forces to offer up an online event designed to shine the spotlight on diversity in children’s literature.

    This year it will be celebrated on January 25, 2019.

    February

    Harry Potter Book Night (#HarryPotterBookNight) is back!  This year it will be celebrated on February 7, 2019.

    Get ready to celebrate The Professors of Hogwarts on February 7th 2019 when once again, fans of all ages will have the chance to celebrate J.K. Rowling’s wonderful series – and pass the magic on to young readers who haven’t yet discovered these unforgettable books. 

    Take Your Child to the Library Day
    Take Your Child to the Library Day (TYCLD) is an international initiative that encourages families everywhere to take their children to their local library. Launched in 2011 in Connecticut by librarians Nadine Lipman (Waterford Public Library, retired) and Caitlin Augusta (Stratford Library) with artist Nancy Elizabeth Wallace, TYCLD raises community awareness about the importance of the library in the life of a child, and promotes library services and programs for children and families.

    TYCLD is officially held on the first Saturday in February – but the date is flexible! TYCLD celebrations may take place on any date(s) in February – it’s up to your library.  This year it will be celebrated at many libraries on February 2, 2019.

    International Book Giving Day
    I recently wrote a blog post about this day.  Find out how I celebrated last year by clicking here.

    International Book Giving Day takes place on February 14th each year (Valentine’s Day). The aim is to get books into the hands of as many children as possible.  International Book Giving Day is a 100% volunteer initiative aimed at increasing children’s access to and enthusiasm for books.

    World Read Aloud Day
    World Read Aloud Day motivates children, teens, and adults worldwide to celebrate the power of words and creates a community of readers taking action to show the world that the right to literacy belongs to all people. World Read Aloud Day is celebrated by millions of people in more than 100 countries thanks to people like you who participate and spread the word across the globe!

    This year it will be celebrated on February 1, 2019.

    March

    Read Across America Day (also known as Dr. Seuss Day)
    Read Across America Day is an initiative of the National Education Association (NEA).  NEA’s Read Across America is an annual reading motivation and awareness program that calls for every child in every community to celebrate reading on March 2nd, the birthday of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss.  NEA’s Read Across America also provides NEA members, parents, caregivers, and children the resources and activities they need to keep reading on the calendar 365 days a year.

    National Read Aloud Month
    March
    is Read Aloud Month, started by Read Aloud 15 Minutes. Reading aloud is the single most important thing a parent or caregiver can do to improve a child’s readiness to read and learn. When every child is read aloud to for 15 minutes every day from birth, more children will be ready to learn when they enter kindergarten, more children will have the literacy skills needed to succeed in school, and more children will be prepared for a productive and meaningful life after school.

    April

    International Children’s Book Day
    Since 1967, on or around Hans Christian Andersen’s birthday, 2 April, International Children’s Book Day (ICBD) is celebrated to inspire a love of reading and to call attention to children’s books.

    This year it will be celebrated on April 2, 2019.

    National Library Workers Day
    National Library Workers Day (NLWD) is a day for library staff, users, administrators and Friends groups to recognize the valuable contributions made by all library workers.

    This year it will be celebrated on April 9, 2019.

    National Bookmobile Day
    National Bookmobile Day celebrates our nation’s bookmobiles and the dedicated library professionals who provide this valuable and essential service to their communities every day. Each year, it is celebrated on the Wednesday of National Library Week.

    National Bookmobile Day is an opportunity for bookmobiles fans to make their support known—through thanking bookmobile staff, writing a letter or e-mail to their libraries, or voicing their support to community leaders.

    This year it will be celebrated on April 10, 2019.

    D.E.A.R. (Drop Everything and Read)
    D.E.A.R. stands for “Drop Everything and Read,” a national month-long celebration of reading designed to remind folks of all ages to make reading a priority activity in their lives. Because, what’s more fun(damental) than reading, really?

    D.E.A.R. programs have been held nationwide on April 12th in honor of Beverly Cleary’s birthday, since she first wrote about D.E.A.R. in Ramona Quimby, Age 8 (pages 40-41). Inspired by letters from readers sharing their enthusiasm for the D.E.A.R. activities implemented in their schools, Mrs. Cleary decided to give the same experience to Ramona and her classmates. As D.E.A.R. has grown in popularity and scope, the program has expanded to span the entire month of April . . . offering classrooms and communities additional time to celebrate!

    Independent Bookstore Day
    Independent Bookstore Day is a one-day national party that takes place at indie bookstores across the country on the last Saturday in April.  Every store is unique and independent, and every party is different. But in addition to authors, live music, cupcakes, scavenger hunts, kids events, art tables, readings, barbecues, contests, and other fun stuff, there are exclusive books and literary items that you can only get on that day.

    This year it will be celebrated on April 27, 2019.

    National Poetry Month
    The month of April has been designated as National Poetry Month.  National Poetry Month is the largest literary celebration in the world, with tens of millions of readers, students, K-12 teachers, librarians, booksellers, literary events curators, publishers, bloggers, and, of course, poets marking poetry’s important place in our culture and our lives.

    While we celebrate poets and poetry year-round, the Academy of American Poets was inspired by the successful celebrations of Black History Month (February) and Women’s History Month (March), and founded National Poetry Month in April 1996.

    World Book Day

    World Book Day was designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and is marked in over 100 countries around the globe.

    In the UK and Ireland World Book Day is on March 7, 2019. This date came about after serious thought and lengthy discussion to ensure that we were making the best decision for all participants and our supporters. We take into consideration religious holidays, school terms and potential conflict with other charitable activities.

    In other countries World Book and Copyright Day takes place on April 23. Celebrations take place all over the world to recognize the magical power of books – ‘a link between the past and the future, a bridge between generations and across cultures.  By championing books and copyright, UNESCO stands up for creativity, diversity and equal access to knowledge…’

    National Poem in Your Pocket Day
    Every April, on Poem in Your Pocket Day, people throughout the United States celebrate by selecting a poem, carrying it with them, and sharing it with others throughout the day as schools, bookstores, libraries, parks, workplaces, and other venues ring loud with open readings of poems from pockets.

    Poem in Your Pocket Day was originally initiated in 2002 by the Office of the Mayor, in partnership with the New York City Departments of Cultural Affairs and Education, as part of the city’s National Poetry Month celebration. In 2008, the Academy of American Poets took the initiative national, encouraging individuals around the country to join in and channel their inner bard.

    This year it will be celebrated on April 25, 2019.

    National Library Week
    First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. It is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation’s libraries and librarians and to promote library use and support. All types of libraries – school, public, academic and special – participate.

    This year it will be celebrated the week of April 7 – 13, 2019.

    School Library Month
    School Library Month (SLM) is the American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) celebration of school librarians and their programs. Every April school librarians are encouraged to create activities to help their school and local community celebrate the essential role that strong school library programs play in transforming learning.

    May

    Children’s Book Week

    Children’s Book Week is the annual celebration of books for young people and the joy of reading.

    Established in 1919, Children’s Book Week is the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country. Every year, commemorative events are held nationwide at schools, libraries, bookstores, homes — wherever young readers and books connect!  Children’s Book Week is administered by Every Child A Reader, a 501(c)(3) literacy organization dedicated to instilling a lifelong love of reading in children.

    This year it will be celebrated April 29 – May 5, 2019.

    June

    Audiobook Appreciation Month
    June is Audiobook Appreciation Month!  Celebrating Audiobook Month is simple, find your favorite book in an audio format and try listening to it on your way to work. You can listen to it while you’re in the shower, or laying in bed, or even riding the bus or driving in the morning. The opportunities are endless, and the types of books you can find on tape are growing every year, from compilations of mythology to books on learning a new language, and even certain forms of technical manuals can all be found in an audio format. What would you like to listen to during Audiobook Month? Start making a list!

    GLBT Book Month

    Starting in 2015, the American Library Association will mark GLBT Book Month™, a nationwide celebration of the authors and writings that reflect the lives and experiences of the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community.
    Originally established in the early 1990s by The Publishing Triangle as National Lesbian and Gay Book Month, this occasion is an opportunity for book lovers and libraries with the very best in GLBT literature.

    August

    Book Lovers Day

    August 9 is Book Lovers Day, an unofficial holiday that encourages people to pick up a book (or two) and spend the day reading.

    September

    National Library Card Sign-up Month
    September is Library Card Sign-up Month, a time when the American Library Association and libraries nationwide join together to remind parents, caregivers and students that signing up for a library card is the first step towards academic achievement and lifelong learning.

    Banned Books Week
    Banned Books Week, an annual celebration of the freedom to read since 1982, is observed the last week of September. Each year, librarians, booksellers, teachers and countless others take this opportunity to highlight the importance of intellectual freedom and remind us not to take this precious democratic freedom for granted.

    This year it will be celebrated September 22 – 28, 2019.

    October

    National Dictionary Day
    National Dictionary Day is observed annually on October 16th, the same day as Noah Webster’s birthday.  Dictionary Day was founded to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Noah Webster – the father of the modern dictionary. The objective of this day is to emphasize the importance of dictionary skills, and seeks to improve vocabulary.

    Boo’s for Books
    Boo’s for Books is an annual Halloween campaign sponsored by Sydney’s Book Club. Their goal is to offer parents, families and communities an alternate approach to the traditional Halloween experience by considering passing out books to trick or treaters visiting their home or business in lieu of or in addition to candy and other treats.

    This year it will be celebrated on October 31, 2019.

    November

    National Picture Book Month
    Picture Book Month is an international literacy initiative that celebrates the print picture book during the month of November.

    Founder, Dianne de Las Casas (author & storyteller), and Co-Founders, Katie Davis (author/illustrator), Elizabeth O. Dulemba (author/illustrator), Tara Lazar (author), and Wendy Martin (author/illustrator), put together their worldwide connections to make this happen.

    Every day in November, there is a new post from a picture book champion explaining why he/she thinks picture books are important.

    December

    Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day
    Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day (TYCBD) is celebrated on the first Saturday in December. Founded by novelist Jenny Milchman, TYCBD has grown from 80 stores participating in its first year to 700 this year across all 50 states, Canada, Europe and Australia.

    This year it will be celebrated on December 7, 2019.

    Your turn:  What is your favorite literary event/day to celebrate?  Did I miss any days that should be added to the list?  Feel free to share in the comments.

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