Multicultural Children’s Book Day Shines with Sparkalina

Have you heard the big news? It’s time for the second annual  Multicultural Children’s Book Day: Celebrating Diversity in Children’s Literature being held on Tuesday, January 27, 2015.

PicMonkey Collage

The co-creators of this event are Mia Wenjen from Pragmatic Mom and Valarie Budayr from Jump Into a Book. They have done a wonderful job generating excitement and promoting the event.

Why multicultural books? They say:


Despite census data that shows 37% of the US population consists of people of color, only 10% of children’s books published have diversity content. Using the Multicultural Children’s Book Day, Mia and Valarie are on a mission to change all of that. Their mission is to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these types of books into classrooms and libraries. Another goal of this exciting event is create a compilation of books and favorite reads that will provide not only a new reading list for the winter, but also a way to expose brilliant books to families, teachers, and libraries.

“MCCBD team hopes to spread the word and raise awareness about the importance of diversity in children’s literature. Our young readers need to see themselves within the pages of a book and experience other cultures, languages, traditions and religions within the pages of a book. We encourage readers, parents, teachers, caregivers and librarians to follow along…”

You may want to:


After signing up to participate, I found out I would be receiving a brand new picture book from author Shana Bernabela to review. I feel so lucky.


Sparkalina (Sparkalina Brights) (Volume 1) by Shana Bernabela and illustrated by Maythe Carpertino is a delightful little book with a big message:  It is okay to be different!

Sparklina Brights lives for glitter and sparkles. Her clothes are shiny, her pencils shimmer, even her breakfast bowl and spoon are sparkly. When Sparklina encounters the neighborhood bully, aptly named Tiger Rex, he puts down her look and says it is weird.  Sparkalina is deeply hurt, but her wise mother knows exactly how to help her appreciate her unique qualities.

Many readers are going to be able to relate to Sparkalina’s struggles with identity and self-esteem. In fact, in this interview author Shana Bernabela reveals she had similar issues when she was young. Sparkalina (Sparkalina Brights) (Volume 1) helps give victims of bullying some much-needed tools to feel more confident.

Activities to Accompany Sparkalina:

Wow, this book really begs to be accompanied by some sparkly crafts and activities to reinforce learning. Prepare to be bedazzled.

1. Dress up!

What better way to try on new identities and looks than a game of dress up?


  • Scarves
  • Bright clothes
  • Wacky shoes
  • Costume jewelry
  • Hats
  • Tiaras

The fun outfits in the book are sure to be inspirations. Make it a party and have the “paparazzi” take a lot of pictures.

2. Design sparkly clothes


  • Glitter glue (takes some time to dry)
  • Paper:  construction, poster, shiny wrapping paper, etc.
  • Glitter shakers
  • Glitter tape
  • Sparkly stickers, etc.
  • Scissors
  • Markers

Have the children draw and cut out clothes, either to stand alone or as outfits for paper dolls. Then decorate the outfits with all things sparkly.

spark-craft-1Let their imaginations run wild!

Extension:  The book mentions several items that could also be fun to decorate, such as:

  • Pencils
  • Plastic or paper bowls (for decorative purposes only)
  • Plastic spoons or forks (for decorative purposes only)

Series: Sparkalina Brights
Paperback: 24 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (December 31, 2014)
ISBN-10: 1505481937
ISBN-13: 978-1505481938

Disclosure: Book provided by the author for review purposes. Also, I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.



 Let’s not forget the Multicultural Children’s Book Day: Celebrating Diversity in Children’s Literature Sponsors.

2015 Sponsors include:

Platinum Sponsors: Wisdom Tales Press, Daybreak Press Global Bookshop, Gold SponsorsSatya House,,   Author Stephen Hodges and the Magic Poof, Silver Sponsors: Junior Library GuildCapstone Publishing, Lee and Low Books,  The Omnibus Publishing. Bronze Sponsors:Double Dutch Dolls, Bliss Group Books, Snuggle with Picture Books Publishing,  Rainbow Books,   Author FeliciaCapers,   Chronicle Books   Muslim Writers Publishing ,East West Discovery Press.

CoHosts: The co-creaters have nine amazing Co-Hosts, as well. You can view them here.

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