This year, I am delighted to announce that I am taking part in Multicultural Children’s Book Day, which is celebrated each year in a bid to raise awareness of books that celebrate diversity, and which aims to get such books into the hands of both young readers and teachers.
As part of this, it has been my pleasure to review books by Greek authors. I have never made any secret of my support of multilingualism, and I believe that teachers could support multilingual children by encouraging them to read in their minority language. For those that have Greek-speaking children in their classrooms, here is a book to recommend.
Captain Rake and the Ocean Pirates – Ο Καπετάν Τσουγκράνας και οι πειρατές του Ωκεανού
by Argyro Mountaki – Αργυρώ Μουντάκη
This is a book for early readers who have got past the basic stage and are ready for something a bit more challenging, while still enjoying a wealth of illustrations.
It is a lovely story, encouraging children to think of kindness and what it really means to be courageous, and find one’s inner strength, through a fun pirate story. Building on these themes, there is an undercurrent of suggesting that children should not judge by immediate appearances, with both monsters and pirates not being quite as they seem at first, not to mention the hidden potential of sandwiches!
Children can set sail with Captain Rake, an unusual pirate whose problem is that he is afraid. Along with his friend Christopher, they can follow through his adventure as he overcomes this problem. On discovery of a message in a bottle, he sets off in search of a monster, who he hopes will give him all his courage in return for a joke. However, the tale is not entirely straightforward, and there are lively twists and turns to give depth to the tale and keep children’s attention.
It will stimulate the young imagination through its fresh and different approach to the genre: unlike many other pirate stories aimed at this age group, this one is not stuck in a pseudo-Middle Ages environment without technology, but even mentions TV cameras and other modern devices that children these days can relate to. The writing flows beautifully, in a light and playful tone with a varied language, from words to sentence structure, to help young readers to enrich their vocabulary and consider alternative ways to express themselves.
The illustrations by the talented Christine Menard are bright, cheerful and colourful, full of a vibrance that will appeal to children and which suits the story very well.
The book is available here
Argyro Mountaki is a Greek author of children’s literature, born in Chania on the island of Crete. She is also a teacher of German language in public schools in Greece. She runs an internet site for parents and she writes book reviews published in distinct newspapers and internet sites.
She has studied German Language and Philology and also she has two Master Degrees, one MBA and one in Literature, and is soon to finish her PhD Thesis in Philology. She has taken part in many conferences as a speaker concerning philological matters. She has been writing books since 2005. Her books are published by Patakis, Metaixmio, and Minoas Publications and are beloved by children. She is married and has two children.
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
Medallion Level Sponsors Honorary: Children’s Book Council, The Junior Library Guild, TheConsciousKid.org. Super Platinum: Make A Way Media GOLD: Bharat Babies, Candlewick Press, Chickasaw Press, Juan Guerra and The Little Doctor / El doctorcito, KidLitTV, Lerner Publishing Group, Plum Street Press, SILVER: Capstone Publishing, Carole P. Roman, Author Charlotte Riggle, Huda Essa, The Pack-n-Go Girls, BRONZE: Charlesbridge Publishing, Judy Dodge Cummings, Author Gwen Jackson, Kitaab World, Language Lizard – Bilingual & Multicultural Resources in 50+ Languages, Lee & Low Books, Miranda Paul and Baptiste Paul,Redfin, Author Gayle H. Swift, T.A. Debonis-Monkey King’s Daughter, TimTimTom Books, Lin Thomas, Sleeping Bear Press/Dow Phumiruk, Vivian Kirkfield,
MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board
Honorary: Julie Flett, Mehrdokht Amini, Author Janet Balletta, Author Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Josh Funk, Chitra Soundar, One Globe Kids – Friendship Stories, Sociosights Press and Almost a Minyan, Karen Leggett, Author Eugenia Chu, CultureGroove Books, Phelicia Lang and Me On The Page, L.L. Walters, Author Sarah Stevenson, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Hayley Barrett, Sonia Panigrah, Author Carolyn Wilhelm,Alva Sachs and Dancing Dreidels, Author Susan Bernardo, Milind Makwana andA Day in the Life of a Hindu Kid, Tara Williams, Veronica Appleton, Author Crystal Bowe, Dr. Claudia May, Author/Illustrator Aram Kim, Author Sandra L. Richards, Erin Dealey, Author Sanya Whittaker Gragg, Author Elsa Takaoka, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Anita Badhwar, Author Sylvia Liu, Feyi Fay Adventures, Author Ann Morris, Author Jacqueline Jules, CeCe & Roxy Books, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, LEUYEN PHAM, Padma Venkatraman, Patricia Newman and Lightswitch Learning, Shoumi Sen, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing,Traci Sorell, Shereen Rahming, Blythe Stanfel, Christina Matula, Julie Rubini, Paula Chase, Erin Twamley, Afsaneh Moradian, Claudia Schwam, Lori DeMonia, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls Revolution, Soulful Sydney, Queen 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-HostsA Crafty Arab, Agatha Rodi Books, All Done Monkey, Barefoot Mommy, Biracial Bookworms,Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes, Descendant of Poseidon Reads, Educators Spin on it, Growing Book by Book, Here Wee Read,Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin Lee, Jump Into a Book, Imagination Soup, Jenny Ward’s Class, Kid World Citizen, Kristi’s Book Nook, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Miss Panda Chinese, Multicultural Kid Blogs, Raising Race Conscious Children, Shoumi Sen, Spanish 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: https://wp.me/P5tVud-1H 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.