Sandhya Gandhi-Vakil
Sandhya Gandhi-Vakil
ANNA DAITYA/FOOD MONSTER by Meenu Thomas Tulika Publishers, 2019, 12 pp., 35
November 2019, volume 43, No 11

Sandhya Gandhi-Vakil


By Meenu Thomas. Illustrations by Oindri Chakravarti. Translated by Nagraj Rao

Level 1, pp.12, R35.00


Busy Ants/Kaamkaaji Cheentiyaan

By Kanchan Bannerji. Illustrator: Deepa Balsavar. Translated by Poonam Srivastava Kudaisya

Level 1, pp.12, R35.00



By Supriya Nair. Illustrations by Shivam Thapliyal

Level 4, pp.16, R45.00



By Zac O’Yeah. Illustrations by Niloufer Wadia

Level 4, pp.24, R55.00



By Ashima Freidog. Illustrations by Fahad Faizal. Translated by Nagraj Rao

Level 3, pp.16, R40.00

All published by Pratham Books, 2019

The five books that are reviewed below and the many others that I have read before, makes me wonder at the spectrum of quality that one finds in Pratham Books, as they range from excellent to mediocre to simply substandard..

Before reviewing the five at hand let us quickly look at Pratham’s classification of reading skills:

1 For children beginning to read/ read aloud: This level needs to be visually gripping and have a read aloud quality, apart from the obvious—a good story, a story that the child would want to hear again and again.

2 Learning to read: Again, visual appeal is very important here along with very simple vocabulary—short words and simple sentences. This would be the story teller’s challenge—tell a good story in the simplest words possible. It is also a good idea to keep space in the structure to explain words that are difficult.

3 Reading independently: I would assume that the average age in this level would have children between the ages of 7 and 9. They would have the ability to understand new concepts if explained simply and interestingly.

4 Reading proficiently: One would presume the age group in this category to be 9-10 to 13.

In today’s age of ease of access to information, the writer would have to have a very good idea of what kids of this age would know. An understanding of tween and teen psychology would be needed to grab their attention. The range of pre-knowledge is so wide that there is a danger of making your tale too childish or too adult.

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