This is the last day of the Picture Books for Adoptive Families Series. I've given you lists for general adoption books, transracial adoption books, and heritage books for children of various cultures.
Today, I'm sharing my list of books for Asian heritage children.
If you have any questions for me, or if you'd like to recommend a book, please leave a comment.
Hush! A Thai Lullaby by Mingford Ho (Thailand)
I frequently read this brightly illustrated song to Simon when he was a baby and toddler. In the book a mother goes to each animal, from big water buffalo to little mosquito, asking them to hush so that her babe can sleep.
Baya, Baya, Lulla-by-a by Megan McDonald (India)
Vibrant illustrations are accompanied by rhythmic text:
Baya, baya, lulla-by-a.
Mata rocks you, choti ladki,
to the east, to the west,
to the land, to the sea.
You blink to the jingle jingle of Mata's silver.
She sings to you morning after morning,
like a sleepy cricket.
Your heart answers like a small drum.
This lulling book tells the story of a baya bird saving a baby's life.
One Grain of Rice Demi (India)
In this folktale, Rani, outsmarts a selfish raja in order to save her village. A wonderful story.
The bold and beautiful artwork is inspired by traditional miniature paintings.
Bee-bim Bop by Linda Sue Park (Korea)
A girl helps her mother shop for and cook a traditional Korean dish, Bee-bim Bop. The text is lyrical and the pictures are fun! The book also includes a recipe for Bee-bim Bop.
The Firekeeper's Son (Korea)
In Korea in the early 1800s, news from countryside reached the king by means of signal fires. On one mountaintop after another, a fire was lit when all was well. If the king did not see a fire, that meant trouble, and he would send out his army. This book is about Sang-hee, son of the village firekeeper. When his father is unable to light the fire one night, young Sang-hee must take his place. –amazon.com
A great book about growing up and responsibility.
Sori's Harvest Moon by Uk Bae Lee (Korea)
This book was recommended to me by a friend who has adopted two boys from Korea.
Sori is excited about leaving the city and traveling to her grandmother's village for the celebration of the harvest moon. Every year the whole family gathers together for the ancient traditions, including dancing at Pung-Mul, the folk festival. Sori's grandmother prepares delicious food for the holiday, with fruit and freshly harvested rice. Sori falls asleep on the way home, dreaming of her grandmother and waiting for the next year. –amazon.com
New Clothes for the New Year by Hyun-joo Bae (Korea)
The book a girl getting ready for Korean New Year was also recommended by my friend.
Round Is a Mooncake by Grace Lin (China)
A little girl's neighborhood becomes a discovery ground of things round, square, and rectangular. Many of the objects are Asian in origin: round rice bowls, square dim sum, Chinese lace, etc . . . a short glossary explains the cultural significance of the objects featured in the book. –amazon.com
When Elijah was young, we read this one over and over again.
Many of her books are for younger children (ages 2-5), but others encompass a larger age range or are for the older set.
The Empty Pot by Demi (China)
I never tire of reading this book about integrity and honesty to my children.
The emperor needs to choose a successor and so he issues a challenge: who can grow a beautiful flower? He gives seeds to every child in the village and the children each try to tackle the task.
Ping is one of these children. He normally has no problem growing something grand, but this task is proving challenging. Despite Ping's determination and hard work, he has nothing to show at the end but an empty pot. Based on some great advice from his dad, he takes his empty pot to the emperor.
The ending of the book is as rich as the illustrations that accompany the text throughout.
Moonbeams, Dumplings & Dragon Boats by Nina Simonds and Leslie Swartz (China)
This is a treasury of Chinese holiday tales, activites, and recipes!
Filled with delectable recipes, hands-on family activities, and traditonal tales to read aloud, this extraordinary collection will inspire families everywhere to recreate the magic of Chinese holidays in their own homes. They can feast on golden New Year's dumplings and tasty moon cakes, build a minature boat for the Dragon Boat Festival and a kite at Qing Ming, or share the story of the valiant warroir, Hou Yi. -amazon.com
Grandfather's Journey by Allen Say (Japan)
This book is about a man who immigrates from Japan to America. He longs to return to Japan, but when he does, he has mixed feelings: "The funny thing is, the moment I am in one country, I am homesick for the other."
This is a great story demonstrating how a person can love two places at the same time. Good for all children who are adopted from another country.