Monday, April 16, 2012

A Visit With Kashmira Sheth

Our school had a wonderful visit with Kashmira Sheth recently. She shared about being an author, showed us how to fold paper boats, told us a bit about India, and even read a bit from her next book. It is an early chapter book called The No Dogs Allowed Club and it really had us laughing. I can't wait until it comes out this fall.

Another fun thing was that she also let us wear some of the clothing she brought. I never thought I would get to wear a sari.

Her picture books, My Dadima Wears a Sari and Monsoon Summer are wonderful glimpses into families that care for one another.

Her middle grade novels are each very unique. Blue Jasmine was her first published book. I loved it the first time I read it.  I think I am on my third time through it now as I read it with my fifth grade lunch book group.   I am still enjoying the many layers of the book and learning about the experience of moving to a new country and learning about a new culture.  Our book group has had a lot of fun discussing Seema (the main character) and her many new experiences.
The second book I read was Keeping Corner which is a very moving look into India in the 1940s. The cultural expectations for women were very different at the time.  It is amazing to think about what situations a young woman might have been faced with and how some women and the men in their lives worked to change that.
Her book Boys Without Names is a look at the working lives of some young boys in Mumbai. It is an eye opening look at children in the workforce. It is heartbreaking, but still hopeful.

I am really thankful that the PTO sponsored her visit with us. I have been so happy to share Kashmira Sheth's work with my students and we have had some amazing discussions around her books.  We are so glad she shared her books and herself with us!

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