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111 Trees

2020

by Rina Singh and Marianne Ferrer

"In a small village in India, a boy grows up to make a huge difference in his community by planting trees to celebrate the birth of every girl. Based on a true story, this book celebrates environmental sustainability, community activism and ecofeminism. This is the story of Sundar Paliwal, who is from a small Indian village ruled by ancient customs. As he grows to be a man, Sundar suffers much heartbreak and decides it is time for change to come to his village. Sundar is determined to live in a place where girls are valued as much as boys and where the land is not devastated by irresponsible mining. Sundar's plan? To celebrate the birth of every girl with the planting of 111 trees. Though many villagers resist at first, Sundar slowly gains their support. And today, there are over a quarter of a million trees in his village, providing food, water and opportunities for women to earn a living. His efforts have turned a once barren and deforested landscape into a fertile and prosperous one where girls can thrive. Based on true events in the life of Sundar Paliwal, and written in collaboration with him, Rina Singh's uplifting story shows how one person can make a difference in a community. Beautiful illustrations by Marianne Ferrer sensitively bring the evolution of the village to life. With strong links to the science curriculum, this book offers lessons on environmental awareness, sustainability and stewardship, as well as the concept of ecofeminism. It also explores ideas of social development, community and culture, and the character education traits of responsibility and cooperation. A thoroughly researched author's note with photographs and more information about the village of Piplantri is included." -- publisher

Biography Informational Oppression & Resilience

A Bowl Full of Peace

2020

by Caren Stelson and Akira Kusaka

"In this deeply moving nonfiction picture book, award-winning author Caren Stelson brings Sachiko Yasui's story of surviving the atomic bombing of Nagasaki and her message of peace to a young audience. Sachiko's family home was about half a mile from where the atomic bomb fell on August 9, 1945. Her family experienced devastating loss. When they returned to the rubble where their home once stood, her father miraculously found their serving bowl fully intact. This delicate, green, leaf-shaped bowl—which once held their daily meals—now holds memories of the past and serves as a vessel of hope, peace, and new traditions for Sachiko and the surviving members of her family." -- publisher

Biography Informational Oppression & Resilience

Ani’s Light

2020

by Tanu Shree Singh and Sandhya Prabhat

"Everything has turned dark. Will Ani find his light again? This sensitive, hopeful story will help kids explore their sadness when a close family member is undergoing medical treatment, while highlighting sources of light that can bring stability during uncertain times. It is also a terrific resource for anyone who wants to understand the ups and downs of coping with a parent’s illness. Ani's stuck in a dark cloud because his mother hasn’t been home. His friends and family try to brighten his mood, but nothing helps. When Mama finally comes back, but with her hair missing, Ani’s light gets brighter and brighter, chasing away his darkness. The unconditional love between Ani and his mother shines through as the two enjoy their precious time together, whether it’s forever, or just for now. Includes a note from the author explaining ways to help a child through a family crisis." -- publisher

Any Child

Fauja Singh Keeps Going

2020

by Simran Jeet Singh and Baljinder Kaur

"The inspiring true story of Fauja Singh, who broke world records to become the first one hundred-year-old to run a marathon, shares valuable lessons on the source of his grit, determination to overcome obstacles, and commitment to positive representation of the Sikh community. Every step forward is a victory. Fauja Singh was born determined. He was also born with legs that wouldn’t allow him to play cricket with his friends or carry him to school miles from his village in Punjab. But that didn’t stop him. Working on his family’s farm, Fauja grew stronger to meet his own full potential. He never stopped striving. At the age of 81, after a lifetime of making his body, mind, and heart stronger, Fauja decided to run his first marathon. He went on to break records all around the world and became the first person over 100 to complete the grueling long-distance race. With inspiring text by Simran Jeet Singh and exhilarating illustrations by Baljinder Kaur, the true story of Fauja Singh reminds us that it’s both where we start and how we finish that make our journeys unforgettable." -- publisher

Biography

Grandmother School

2020

by Rina Singh and Ellen Rooney

"This brilliantly illustrated picture book tells the story of the Aajibaichi Shala, the Grandmother School, that was opened in Phangane, India, in 2016 to teach local grandmothers how to read and write. Every morning, a young girl walks her grandmother to the Aajibaichi Shala, the school that was built for the grandmothers in her village to have a place to learn to read and write. The narrator beams with pride as she drops her grandmother off with the other aajis to practice the alphabet and learn simple arithmetic. A moving story about family, women and the power of education—when Aaji learns to spell her name you’ll want to dance along with her. Women in countless countries continue to endure the limitations of illiteracy. Unjust laws have suppressed the rights of girls and women and kept many from getting an education and equal standing in society. Based on a true story from the village of Phangane, India, this brilliantly illustrated book tells the story of the grandmothers who got to go to school for the first time in their lives." -- publisher

Beautiful Life Oppression & Resilience

Krit Dreams of Dragon Fruit

2020

by Natalie Becher, Emily France and Samantha Woo

"A beautifully illustrated, Zen-inspired picture book for children ages 4-8 about moving to a new home, making friends, and finding beauty wherever you are. Krit and his dog, Mu, love their beautiful home in Thailand—full of golden temples, colorful mountainsides, and endless adventures. Everything seems perfect until Krit’s mother announces they will be moving to the frigid city of Chicago. At first, Krit tries to adjust to this unfamiliar place, but he can’t do any of the things he used to love. Missing Thailand, Krit asks his mother to tell him a story about home. But instead of a story, she gives Krit a koan—a Zen riddle—to puzzle through. Krit wonders what the story about a blade of grass and Buddha’s smile have to do with home, but in solving the puzzle, Krit meets a new friend and learns that home is wherever he makes it." -- publisher

Beautiful Life Cross Group

Story of the Mongolian Tent House

2020

by Dashdondog Jamba, Anne Pellowski and Beatriz Vidal

"Based on an original tale by award-winning Mongolian author, Dashdondog Jamba, and retold by distinguished author, Anne Pellowski, find out how the traditional Mongolian tent house (called a ger in Mongolian and a yurt in Turkish), was created in the ancient past by drawing on the example of nature, and how it later became a symbol of friendship and harmony. With stunning illustrations by renowned artist, Beatriz Vidal, experience first-hand the wide-open steppes of Mongolia!" -- publisher

Folklore

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