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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Multicultural Children's Books -- Rainbow Stew


Disclosure: Lee and Low Books sent me a copy of Rainbow Stew to review. I received no other compensation. All opinions are my own.

Today I am so excited to be part of the Multicultural Children's Book Day: Celebrating Diversity in Children's Literature. Valerie at Jump Into a Book and Mia at Pragmatic Mom joined forces to come up with this amazing idea! 



The Mission: Despite the census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of people of color, only 10% of children's books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural Children's Book Day, Mia and Valerie are on a mission to change all that. Their mission is to not only raise awareness for the kid's books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these books into classrooms and libraries. Another goal of this exciting event is create a compilation of books and favorite reads that will provide not only a new reading list for the winter, but also a way to expose brilliant books to families, teachers, and libraries.

What is a Multicultural Book? A multicultural book is a book that celebrates the diversity in our world. Its main characters should be people of color or a combinations of races. Why do these books matter? It is important for children to have role models like themselves, so that they feel part of the world. I also think it is important for all children to see diverse characters to they understand there are differences, but also commonalities. 


Multicultural Children's Book Day Information
Now, the first thing that Valerie and Mia did was find some amazing sponsors who have donated books to be reviewed for Multicultural Children's Book Day: Celebrating Diversity in Children's Literature. The sponsors are Wisdom Tales Press, Lee & Low Books, Chronicle Books, and Susan Daniel Fayad: Author of My Grandfather’s Masbaha.

Next they found a group of bloggers to help review all these multicultural books. The blogs that will have reviews are:
2GirlsLostInaBook · 365 Days of Motherhood · A Bilingual Baby · A Simple Life, Really? · Africa to America · After School Smarty Pants · All Done Monkey · Andi’s Kids Books · Anita Brown Bag  · Austin Gilkeson · Barbara Ann Mojica ·  Books My Kids Read · Bottom Shelf Books · Cats Eat Dogs · Chasing The Donkey · Children's Book-a-Day Almanac · Children's Books Heal · Church o Books · CitizenBeta · Crafty Moms Share · Discovering The World Through My Son's Eyes · Early Words · Flowering Minds · Franticmommy · Gathering Books · GEO Librarian · Gladys Barbieri · Going in Circles · Growing Book by Book · iGame Mom · I’m Not The Nanny · InCulture Parent · Itsy Bitsy Mom ·Just Children’s BooksKid World Citizen · Kristi’s Book Nook · Mama Lady Books · Mama Smiles · Mission Read · Mother Daughter Book Reviews · Mrs AOk · MrsTeeLoveLifeLaughter · Ms. Yingling Reads · Multicultural Kids Blog · One Sweet World · Open Wide The World · P is for Preschooler · Rapenzel Dreams · School4Boys · Sharon the Librarian · Spanish Playground · Sprout's Bookshelf · Squishable Baby · Stanley and Katrina · Teach Mama · The Art of Home Education · The Brain Lair · The Educators' Spin On It · The Family-Ship Experience · The Yellow Door Paperie · This Kid Reviews Books  · Trishap’s Books · Unconventional Librarian · Vicki Arnold · We3Three · World for Learning · Wrapped in Foil 

The reviews will appear any time before January 27th. On January 27th there will be a blog hop where all the reviews will be linked up. For more information on the event, check out the Multicultural Children's Book Day page at Jump Into a Book.

Our Book Review



Now onto our book!! Lee and Low sent us a copy of  Rainbow Stew by Cathryn Falwell. This is a wonderful story about a group of children who are visiting their grandfather. When they wake up one morning their happiness to be with the grandfather and play outside quickly turns to sadness when they realize it is raining. The grandfather suggests they make his famous rainbow stew. They go out to the garden and pick a rainbow of vegetables and bring them in the house and help make the rainbow stew. Then they all sit down to a lunch of rainbow stew and salad. What makes it a multicultural book is that the characters are African American. The illustrations are beautiful, colorful and detailed.


The book itself shows the love of the family which is another important lesson. It also shows a healthy meal and lifestyle. Now Rainbow Stew has its own website full of ideas for activities and crafts and of course recipes. They talk about having a garden with children. Well with the 7 degrees outside and snow, our garden right now is in planning stages, but we did buy some of our seeds.

I let Hazel pick out mostly what she wanted for seeds. We also saved some pumpkin and watermelon seeds from last year. 

After reading the book, Hazel of course wanted to make some rainbow stew. Again with the weather, we could not go out to the garden so we went to Whole Foods and I let Hazel pick out a rainbow of vegetables. We had rainbow potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, onion, green beans, purple cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, snap peas, yellow pepper, zucchini, butternut squash and I added some garlic and ginger for flavor. Then she helped prepare the stew. We had it for dinner one night when Steve was out with friends. The book does provide a recipe at the end. I found I added much more broth to it to cook the vegetables. 

Giveaway Information
Now here are some more fun things about Multicultural Children's Book Day!! There is a giveaway at Wisdom Tales. You can enter to win a full set of their books now through the 26th!! On January 27th Barefoot Books (another sponsor) will be hosting a giveaway on their Facebook page.

More Multicultural Children Books Featured at Crafty Moms Share