Written by: Afsaneh Moradian
Illustrated by: Maria Bogade
For ages: 3 years and up
Topics Covered: Self-Expression, Gender Stereotypes, Identity, Friendship, Kindness, Self-Esteem.
Summary: This book is absolutely adorable! Jamie has just moved, and is starting a new school. When they get to school and join in free play, Jamie moves about the classroom looking for new friends and fun activities. Jamie is completely ungendered throughout the bookend when asked by other classmates if Jamie is a boy or girl, they answer “I’m Jamie!” The entire book is about how it truly doesn’t matter, any kid can like any activity and dress however they want. Jamie is a good friend, and that’s what matters! The illustrations are diverse and fun, we really enjoyed seeing Jamie’s story come to life.
This was sent to us by the author for Children’s Multicultural Book Day to review, but all opinions are our own! We believe along with Afsaneh that children shouldn’t be strongly stereotyped, and gender neutral activities are the way to go in a classroom. This means that an educator allows and promotes every activity to every child equally, based on what that child is interested in. We really loved this book and were so glad to be paired with Afsaneh for the event!
Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020 (1/31/20) is in its 7 th year! This non-profit children’s literacy initiative was founded by Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen; two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural books and authors on the market while also working to get those book into the hands of young readers and educators. Seven years in, MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves continues.
About the Author & the Illustrator:
We are excited to learn more about Afsaneh Moradian, author of the book! Here is her “about me” section from her website:
“I grew up between Washington, D.C., northern NJ, and New York City. I spent my childhood reading, writing, singing and watching tv.
After college, I started working at a Montessori preschool and my career as an educator began. I went on to get a Master’s in Education and am in the process of finishing a PhD in Education.
For more than 15 years, I have had an amazing time combining my love of writing and creativity with teaching students of all ages (from preschool to graduate school) in a variety of educational levels and settings between the United States and Mexico.
I love sharing my ideas with students, teachers, school administrators, parents, and anyone who will listen.
I write children’s books, poetry, short stories, essays and articles, in addition to writing about education.”
Maria Bogade is an illustrator and author with an animation background. She loves creating illustrations with a strong narrative, colorful and beautifully composed to entertain children and adults alike. Her work is internationally published and is also found on greeting cards and products such as chocolate. With her three children and spouse, she lives in a tiny village in southern Germany where fox and hare bid each other good night (we don’t know what this means, but it sounds lovely!).