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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

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

Teatime Around the World

2020

by Denyse Waissbluth and Chelsea O'Byrne

"A celebration of diversity and deliciousness, Teatime Around the World reveals all the wonderful ways we can enjoy a cup of tea––or two! Let’s go on an adventure to discover new cultures and friends through tea! In this fun and lyrical picture book for ages 4-8, kids will learn how tea is enjoyed in Thailand, Japan, Russia, Egypt, Pakistan, Hong Kong, Uruguay, South Sudan, India, and more countries! Did you know that po cha, the traditional tea in Tibet, is thick and salty like soup? Or that in Iran, tea is served with a rock? (A rock candy, that is!) Or that afternoon tea was dreamed up in England by a duchess who complained of being hungry between lunch and dinner? With vivid poetry, vibrant illustrations, and unique facts about different tea cultures, Teatime Around the World tells the delightful story of a beloved beverage." -- publisher

Beautiful Life Informational

Different Differenter

2019

by Jyoti Gupta and Tarannum Pasricha

"Different Differenter is a beautifully-illustrated, full-color, activity book for children that thoughtfully addresses everyday skin color consciousness (and bias) in a way that's easy to understand. Children’s rich observations and questions about color, caste, race elicit accurate yet straightforward responses. Jyoti’s art-and-craft-based book takes you on a playful and creative discovery to find answers that work for you and your family—while creatively introducing facts of history and 15-plus new words. Make art. Perform a play for the nanas when they’re in town. Eat a yummy homemade dessert. Ooh! and aah! about how each member of the family has a different skin color. Utilize this educational tool that sets the context for the hard conversations about self-awareness, color, discrimination, and identity. Subjects included in the book are biology about skin (melanin, genes, adaptation); culturally-related aspects (food, art practices, region/ethnicity); colorism's social impact (bullying, media bias) and solutions (bystander intervention, activism, and media literacy)." -- publisher

Incidental Informational Race/Culture Concepts

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