Hello friends, or as they say in the country of Korea, 안녕하세요 친구 annyeonghaseyo chingu!
Today I'm writing to you from my home in West Sumatra, Indonesia, in my comfy tree nest. You may be wondering why I am speaking Korean to you when I am not writing to you from Korea? Well, I am so excited to share that I have been chosen to write book reviews for Multicultural Children's Book Day (MCBD) this year for the very first time! MCBD is a non-profit organization that was started four years ago by two very nice ladies who love reading (see below to learn more about them) and who came together to create a day that celebrated books from all around the world for kids! Now, their national event helps spread love for reading and learning about different cultures and people to families everywhere. Isn't that awesome?!? So, when I found out that I get to review some of the amazing books from authors all over the world, I jumped for joy! I love traveling the world and sharing my adventures with kids and families like you, so to be part of such a great event and help you learn even more about our world means a lot to this little sun bear!
Photo By Joy Sun Bear, Inc.
So, to start my adventure tour of book reviews (three in total), we are first taking an imaginary trip to the country of Korea to explore a fun and interesting story called, "Heung Bu and Nol Bu: A Coloring Book Story in English and Korean," written by FB Smit, illustrated by Monserratt Vallejo and published by EeyagiTales. Now, before I share more about this fascinating book, I wanted to show you where Korea is in our world. Maybe some of you have heard of it, but if not, here is a map to show you where Korea is located:
Map Photo By derivative work: Seb az86556 Locator map of South Korea.svg: KSiOM (Locator map of South Korea.svg) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Korea (in red) is right next to Japan, a beautiful country I visited last April. When flying in my red air balloon to Japan, I remember seeing Korea and I hoping I will get to visit it one day soon!
The story of Heung Bu and Nol Bu is an old folktale from Korea. It is about two brothers who grew up together with their father, but while one brother was kind and generous, the other was greedy and mean. When they grow up, the mean brother, Nol Bu, takes everything he can from his family and keeps it all for himself. The kind brother, Heung Bu, doesn't have much and his family was often hungry. Still, he shares whatever he has and goes out of his way to help others.
Their story goes on to show what happens when Heung Bu helps a pair of baby birds, even nursing one back to health after it breaks its leg. I don't want to spoil the great story, but I can tell you that it becomes a magical tale about doing the right thing, even if it isn't easy. And what a great ending!
The book is written in both English and Korean, so if you know Korean you can follow along. If you don't know Korean, that's okay, you can learn with me! I'm still practicing, but the alphabet is short - only 24 characters - and it is pretty easy to learn how to read and write it. Here's a video that is the first in a series to help you learn:
I really enjoyed the illustrations in the book, the character's expressions were always easy to understand. The pictures are full of energy too, and very fun to color! I used some crayons I got from my friends in Japan to color the pages, and I took a picture to share with you.
Photo By Joy Sun Bear, Inc.
If you and your parents are interested in buying the book, you can find it in paperback from Amazon.com. It is 56 pages long, with the writing on one page and the illustration on the opposite page. As you may know, I'm a big fan of coloring pages, and I had a lot of fun coloring the story as I read along. I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did! There are some great lessons about treating others well that are very important for everyone of all ages to learn. Oh and if you want to learn more about the author of the book, FB Smit, and check out her other book and blogs, click here.
Hope you enjoyed my first book review friends! How did I do? Ask your parent, guardian or teacher if you can comment below and share what you think with me. If you do read the book, let me know how you enjoyed it, if you learned any of the words in Korean and which page you enjoyed coloring the most!
Also, don't miss some great multicultural books, activities and a free classroom kit for homeschoolers, teachers and librarians provided in the links below courtesy of MCBD!
Stay tuned for the next stop on my book adventure tour coming out soon: Cambodia!!
Have a great day and 안녕히 계십시오 annyeonghi gyesibsio (goodbye friends)!
-Joy Sun Bear
Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/17) is its fourth year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness on the ongoing need to include kid’s books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.
Despite census data that shows 37% of the US populationconsists of people of color, only 10% of children’s books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural
Children’s Book Day holiday, the MCBD Team are on a mission to change all of that.
This event has also proven to be an excellent way to compile a list of diverse children’s book titles and reviews for parents, grandparents, educators and librarians to use all year long.
Current Sponsors: MCBD 2017 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.
Platinum Sponsors include:
Other Medallion Level Sponsors include heavy-hitters like:
Author Sponsors include:
We’d like to also give a shoutout to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also work tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts
MCBD Links to remember:
Free Multicultural Books for Teachers:
Free Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators:
Free Diversity Book Lists and Activities for Teachers and Parents: