Publication Date: May 7, 2024
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Ages 4 to 8
A young girl makes a bindi with her grandmother and discovers what wearing one means to her. A young girl is eager to learn all about bindis, the red dot that goes between her brows. Paati, her grandmother, shows her how to make a bindi in a clay pot by combining crushed turmeric, sandalwood powder and a dollop of ghee. They mix and mix and mix until, like magic, the mixture turns from yellow to bright red. Her bindi can be big or small, and shaped like a star, a flower or a glowing half-moon. She can wear her bindi to celebrate different festivals, such as Diwali, or on an ordinary day as a way to stay centered and calm. In this way, she discovers that her bindi is more than just a dot. Author Suma Subramaniam’s lovely intergenerational story celebrates the cultural traditions that make us who we are. The rich illustrations by Kamala Nair add layers of cultural details and captivatingly evoke the girl’s experience as she prepares and wears her bindi. A Bindi Can Be … is a mirror for the millions of children around the world who wear, or have family members who wear, a bindi. It offers a wonderful entry point for children learning about global cultures and traditions, and can be used for lessons on traditional celebrations such as Diwali. The story also provides an opportunity to introduce topics of mindfulness and emotional regulation to young children. Back matter contains extended information about bindis, what they are, other names for them, why people wear them and how they are made, as well as a glossary.
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